Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Bruin Banter 2020 - Episode 9: Macy Toronjo

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Felicia Hano: What's up, Bruin fans?

Welcome back to this week's episode of Bruin Banter, or Zoomin' Banter because,

you know, social distancing is making it hard to have a one-on-one interview.

But we wanted to give all the seniors on the team an opportunity to just

have one last time on Bruin Banter just because I wanted all of them

on the show, and I'm sure you guys want to hear from them as well.

And I'm super excited to announce our first guest, Macy Toronjo.

Macy Toronjo: Hey y'all!

Felicia Hano: Macy, thanks for being on the show.

I heard you're done with school, so that's awesome.

Congratulations to you.

Macy Toronjo: Thank you so much.

Yeah, it's, it's weird to be done with college finally, after five years.

It doesn't quite feel like it yet.

Probably because we're still in quarantine, but yeah, it's

nice to not have to go to any Zoom lectures or anything.

Felicia Hano: That is nice.

It's definitely been a little bit tricky and a little bit hard, but no, after this

is all over, all the seniors, we have to get together and celebrate because

we didn't get that opportunity, so,

Macy Toronjo: Oh yeah, 100% we need this- we need to celebrate.

Felicia Hano: Yes.

So Macy, where are you social distancing right now?

Macy Toronjo: So I actually just came back home to Texas.

I booked a one-way flight and it's crazy.

Like, I was able to use my miles and it cost me $5.60 to fly all

the way back to Texas, which is crazy, and there was like 10 people

on my flight, which is also crazy.

But yeah, I think for the remainder of the quarantine, I'll be in Texas.

Um, I'm definitely coming back to LA.

I'm just not sure when that is.

Felicia Hano: Yeah, definitely.

I feel that.

I went back home to, um, thankfully my home isn't as far as Texas, um,

only like 35 minutes away from campus.

But I think especially during this time, it's nice to just be with family and

it's also a nice opportunity just to get close to our loved ones, especially

if we don't get to see them very often.

So I think that's awesome that you went home.

Macy Toronjo: Yeah, I was reluctant to come home because you know, both

my parents are in the medical industry and they're still working, and my

brother's actually not home yet, so I'm actually, I'm all by myself!

But it's in a bigger house, my tiny apartment in Westwood, so.

But it's definitely nice to be home.

Felicia Hano: I feel that.

Well, thank you to your parents for putting themselves out

there to protect everybody else.

I think that's really awesome.

And I know you're probably taking good care of them at home.

Macy Toronjo: Oh yeah.

Felicia Hano: So instead of meet highlights, we're going to do career

highlights because every senior on this team has had such an amazing career.

So we just want to highlight those different things.

And with Macy, she's got quite a few.

The first one being her first meet back after her freshman season, tearing her

rotator cuff, getting surgery, coming back and hitting an amazing floor routine

against the Bridgeport and Utah State.

Macy, how was that?

What did you feel like?

Macy Toronjo: It was such an amazing experience.

It was the first time I got to really represent my school and my

teammates and just everything I had been working for, and I kind

of had two major obstacles before I competed floor for the first time.

I came back from a rotator cuff tear.

And I also had a bit of a health scare in preseason.

I went blind, which, there's an old Bruin Banter episode on all of that.

But yeah, I had a little bit of a health scare and it just kind of gave

me a different appreciation for life.

Really enjoying it in every, in all aspects, whether that be, you know,

any type of obstacle you're facing or the times when you feel very

victorious and you accomplish, you know, what you've been working for.

So yeah, it was a, it was a great, great day.

Felicia Hano: Alright, Macy, the next highlight we're going to talk about is

the first time you competed bars ever.

It was at Utah last season in 2019.

And you had been exhibitioning bars all season long.

How did it feel to compete bars for the first time and make lineups?

Macy Toronjo: You know, it was a terrifying experience having not

competed bars in three, four years.

And he didn't warn me either.

Chris did not warn me when we- cause we were at Utah and I had never been to

Utah before and it was like a sea of red.

I walk in and you know, they always put our lineup orders, like on the

whiteboard in the locker room, and I saw my name like on the lineup

spot and I was like, "Oh, all right, we're gonna, we're going to do this."

Felicia Hano: No, but I totally feel you on that 2019 was the first time I had

ever competed bars really in college and yeah, the last time I had competed bars

before that was probably, shoot like, yeah, five years, six years before that.

Like, bars was not my thing, but I totally feel you.

It's so scary, but it's-

Macy Toronjo: So scary!

It's the only event that's like, I get scared of in like a week.

I'm like scared again.

Felicia Hano: Honestly, now I feel like bars is such a fun event to

compete on, especially kind of like once you get the hang of it.

Like after that you started competing bars more and you got into your

groove and that was really awesome.

So the last highlight that we're going to talk about was from this season where

you exhibitioned beam against Utah as well, um, for the first time since 2017.

How was that?

How was getting up on the beam again in front of Pauley?

Macy Toronjo: You know being in Pauley's always a magical experience.

We have our home crowd and they're just the most amazing

fans, and I was so nervous, but I had been training very well.

Beam is actually my, one of my favorite events to train ever since

I had to take off pretty much the entire year from my shoulder surgery.

I kind of struggled with the whole confidence thing, um, on beam and beam

is basically 98% confidence, I feel like.

But working with Kristina and just really dialing in on my mental game

really helped me and I was, I just kept telling myself positive things.

I was like, "You're good.

You got this."

I went through my beam routine, I don't know, probably like 10 times

in my head throughout the meet and yeah, I was able just to calm down and

dial it in and it was, it was so fun.

It's always a great time competing in Pauley.

Felicia Hano: Yeah.

And that beam routine was beautiful.

Once you hit your series, I was like, "Oh, she's good."

Macy Toronjo: Yeah.


I was like, "Oh, okay.

I'm good now."

Felicia Hano: That's awesome.

All right.

Moving on to Twitter questions.

The first one comes from Sydney and she asks, "Do you regret taking a fifth

year since you got such an abrupt end to your gymnastics career, or would you

have made the same decision regardless?"

Macy Toronjo: Oh, that's such a good question.

Um, I definitely would have made the same decision.

I don't regret going back for a fifth year at all.

I've been told by many grownups, you know, if you can stay in

college as long as you can, do it.

I said, "All right."

And a part of me after last year was like, "You know what?

I'm just, I'm not done."

I was so honored and so blessed that I got to be here for this transitional period.

With UCLA Gymnastics, with the coaching change, it was by no means easy.

It was...

in any case, it's never going to be easy.

But you know, Chris really took ahold of this team and I think he did an

amazing job, and I remember in our- my exit meeting last year, I said,

"You know, Chris, there's a reason this is happening right now when

you're going to have nine seniors."

When are you ever going to have nine seniors?

All the seniors, all the nine of us.

I think there's nine at least.

We are all very individual people and I think we all have

very strong personalities.

But I think, Fishy, you, me, and like all the other seniors really

worked very well together and I think it really made a family this year.


Kudos to you, dude.

And to all of us.

Cause I think we really took the reins of this family this year and it was so fun.

And I don't regret it one bit.

I would not change a single thing.

Besides maybe season ending early.

That was sad.

Felicia Hano: Yeah.

No, I totally feel you like, the seniors.


Having nine seniors, like it kinda sounds like a nightmare, but we all work together

so well and you know, there were times where we had to be honest with each

other, like we weren't going to give each other the short end of the stick.

Like we were just going to lay it all out there.

And that's what we all decided as a class from the beginning of season,

from the beginning of, you know, when we all reported all together, like.

We were going to go through this together.

We were going to be honest with each other, even if it was hard to hear.

And I think that's what we did and we stayed true to

ourselves and to our teammates.

Macy Toronjo: Yeah.

And it, it turned out so amazing.

It was honestly such a fun year.

Probably one of the funnest years I've ever had, which I don't know if I can say

that, but, but I, it really was, it felt like a family to me, which was awesome.

Felicia Hano: It's okay.

I think it was probably one of the most fun years, too.


This question comes from @queenkaly and they asked, "If you could give

your freshman year self one piece of advice, what would you say?"

Macy Toronjo: I'd say I'd tell myself to get more sleep.

I was super social.

I mean, I still am, but I kind of didn't take care of myself that much.

Like I was great at my rehab was great at making friends, but I did

not sleep a lot, and that was probably one of my big pieces of advice.

Now I'm like, "I love my bed and I want to go to sleep."

Felicia Hano: And the last Twitter question comes from @jmblue73 and they

asked, "What's the most embarrassing thing to happen to you while competing?"

Macy Toronjo: Oh, I love this question.

Um, it actually was the same meet that I competed in floor lineups

the first time my sophomore year.

I don't know what I tripped on, but I tripped when we were running out.

And I, when I say face planted, I fell down and I just popped

right back up and kept running.

Felicia Hano: Yeah, I do remember that.

That was pretty funny.

Macy Toronjo: I was like,"Wwell, we can only go up from here."

Felicia Hano: So Macy, we're coming up on the end of our senior year.

What are your future plans?

Do you plan on coming back to LA?

I know that's what you want to do.

What's going through your head right now?

Macy Toronjo: Oh man.

Um, you know, I've been thinking about it a lot and I have always had a huge

passion for the film industry and acting.

And I know it's a little bit of a cliche thing to say, but

I'd love to pursue acting.

And I've actually signed up for a few online, um, acting

classes, which I've started.

Um, however, I am aware of, economically what is going on in our country and it's

going to be a bit rough for a while.

So I was actually talking with my mom yesterday, like on a

walk, and I, I also love science.

And coming from a medical household, I know a lot about medicine.

And that's why I'm kind of the team mom.

Cause I'm like, "What?

What do you feel like?

Do you have a cold?"

Like whatever.

And uh, I also have a huge passion for science and I- my mom was telling me

there's a few accelerated programs.

I'd have to move back to Texas for probably about a

year, maybe a year and a half.

And it would be a great way to also, um, be able to help people

out and go to nursing school.

And I can always, the good thing about nursing school is it's shift work.

So you get signed up for shifts on certain days and certain

days you don't have to work.

You have the day off.

And that would kind of work well with acting, if I choose to do that.

But yeah, I'm just kind of seeing what all my options are.

But I'd definitely say actingandn nursing are my two biggest passions right now.

Felicia Hano: Wow, that's awesome.

Oh my gosh.

I knew about the acting, but I had no idea about the nursing stuff.

Macy Toronjo: Yeah, I haven't told that many people about it.

Felicia Hano: Wow I literally could picture you as such a great nurse,

but she really is the team mom.

So the last meet that we had was against Cal, and I was a little bit sick, like

just a cold, like a little sinus thing.

And I go back into the locker room and Macy was like, you

want some Advil Cold and Flu?

And I was like, "Yeah."

She was like, "I promise you, like you will feel so much better."

And this medicine just cleared me up.

Oh my gosh.


So thank you to Macy.

Macy Toronjo: Always.

I always got you, Fishy.

Felicia Hano: Alright, well thank you, Macy, for being our

first guest on Zoomin' Banter.

It was so awesome talking with you and catching up.

I'm so happy that you're happy and you're pursuing the things

that you want to pursue.

I'm, I'm just really happy for you

Macy Toronjo: Aww.

Thanks Fishy, and thanks so much for having me on the show.

I miss you.

Felicia Hano: I miss you too.

All right, well thank you guys so much for watching.

We will be reaching out to the rest of the seniors who haven't been on

Bruin Banter yet cause I know you guys definitely want to hear from them.

Yeah, I hope you all are staying safe and we love you so much and don't

forget, keep your eye out for future episodes because more will be coming.

Other than that, I hope you guys are having a great day.


The Description of Bruin Banter 2020 - Episode 9: Macy Toronjo