Hot Mess! Olympic Hopeful Auctions Self For Training Money

By Steve Bryant
|  Friday, Sep 25, 2009  |  Updated 9:28 AM EDT
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Olympics by the Numbers

An Olympic hopeful, Jenna Shoemaker auctioned herself on eBay to raise training money.

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Save Jenna from the pole!

In a bid to save herself from becoming a stripper in order to pay for her training, triathlete, Olympic hopeful, and gobsmackingly attractive ur-femme Jenna Shoemaker auctioned herself on eBay.

More precisely, the California-born Shoemaker's offered a dinner "date" at a restaurant "mutually agreed upon" lasting 2.5 hours (precise, these triathletes) and an autographed race kit worn during her 2009 season.

No word on whether she'd mind if you intently ogle her ... abs?

Shoemaker wasn't really considering stripping -- it was apparently a joking reference on her Facebook page -- but she was "advised to get a job this fall so that come January I will be able to train full time without worrying about money."

"I don't think there's anything wrong with [stripping]," Shoemaker said, "but it's not my style. Some things need to be left to the imagination."

But therein lay the problem: observers used their imaginations, and decided what Shoemaker was doing -- selling her body?! -- was shameful.

"You did this primarily for personal gain - be it publicity or money. Shameful," wrote one of the many commenters.

The triathlete community largely leapt to her defense, and Shoemaker said she was astounded by the negative reaction.

"It's a shame that everyone is raking me over hot coals," Shoemaker wrote on her blog, explaining that she'd decided to donate the proceeds from the auction to breast cancer research.

"There are so many amazing and talented athletes who are so gifted but so broke and it's just such a shame that there isn't more money to support all of us," she wrote.

Sadly, for all the furor over her auction, nobody -- not Shoemaker, not breast cancer research -- will be making much money off this. Shoemaker received only five bids, with the winner offering up $275.

Here's hoping the dinner was, ah, revealing.

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