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That time 'Today' show hosts awkwardly rubbed down an Olympian live on air

Pita Nikolas Taufatofua carries the Tongan flag as delegation marches in the Parade of Nations, during the opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Aug. 5, 2016.

Doug Mills/The New York Times

Pita Nikolas Taufatofua carries the Tongan flag as delegation marches in the Parade of Nations, during the opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Aug. 5, 2016.

8

August

Hey.

Remember that time on Monday when Olympic athlete Pita Taufatofua appeared on the Today show?

Remember that time hosts Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager scrambled to lustily rub him down with coconut oil, but an uncomfortable Natalie Morales chose to simply oil herself?

(today.com)

Remember when the Taekwondo competitor was like:

"It took me 20 years just to..."

And Hoda was like:

"GO ON, WE'RE LISTENING," while rubbing his pecs with coconut oil?

Remember how you cringed and thought, if male hosts ever rushed a female athlete wearing traditional dress and rubbed her down with oil as she tried to talk about her accomplishments, we'd all be like:

Backstory: Taufatofua was the flag bearer for Tonga at the opening ceremonies. He went out wearing a garment called a taʻovala. He was covered in coconut oil, which also has cultural significance. Interwebs went nutty, of course.

Today.com has some interesting information about the athlete, which we didn't get while the hosts were rubbing him down live on air:

Physically, he endured six broken bones, three torn ligaments, three months in a wheelchair and 18 months on crutches during his two previous bids to qualify for the Olympics, according to an interview with an Australian radio station.

[Last modified: Monday, August 8, 2016 3:28pm]

    

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