Thursday, April 24, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

If all of 2013 is like this, I’m going back to sleep

BruceGallaudetW

By
From page B1 | January 18, 2013 | Leave Comment

Right now, I just want to pull the covers up over my head and sleep till 2 p.m.

Maybe when I awake, the sports world we all knew, trusted and could believe in, will be back in place.

Coming from a year’s worth of bad tidings thanks to Jerry Sandusky and the Penn State molestation cover-up, Lance Armstrong, Ryan Braun and Melky Cabrera, we jump right into the void known as the National Baseball Hall of Fame vote, Manti Te’o and that never-ending story of Armstrong’s doping.

Where, oh where, to start?

* Shame on Armstrong: It’s one thing to cheat. It’s another to lie about it. It’s still another — and triply unconscionable — to dig your heels in and demonize former colleagues and friends who testified against you as liars and/or manipulators.

Armstrong took down a sport, and during his recent Tour de Lance, cast a shadow on cycling that will require years to lift.

“Winner” of the Tour de France seven times, Armstrong this week apologized to staffers and volunteers of the Livestrong Foundation and went on Oprah Winfrey’s network to come clean.

Damage done, Lance. We don’t care about you anymore.

Sure, your one-time organization — originally called the Lance Armstrong Foundation — is brilliant, designed to raise awareness of cancer and to help cancer patients cope. That you survived testicular cancer is a miracle, and for that we’re all grateful.

But let Pat McQuaid of the International Cycling Union send you a message on behalf of me, your abandoned fans and the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame:

“Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling and he deserves to be forgotten in cycling.”

Oh, if you want to become relevant again, work as a line volunteer — doing grunt work — at Livestrong Challenges, one of which comes to Davis again on June 22-23.

Take any money you still might have (that was gained directly or indirectly by cheating) and do something meaningful for somebody else. (Do it anonymously, we don’t care about you anymore, remember?)

Your win-at-all-costs approach to your sport has left a wake of destruction from which the cycling world — which means so much to the Davis community — may take decades to recover.

* Speaking of thanks for nothing: Barry Bonds is selling his Beverly Hills home. He’s asking $25 million for it. Ill-gotten gain, I say.

Bonds, suspected of using performance-enhancing supplements, retired as the all-time home run king, once blasting 73 round-trippers in a single season.

While with Pittsburgh, Bonds — at 187 pounds — was headed for baseball’s Hall of Fame. Then came San Francisco (and 60 more pounds). The older he got, the more prodigious his numbers became.

Charge after charge about juicing came to nothing. Nothing, until the Baseball Writers’ Association of America last week said, “You’re a liar.”

While giving Bonds less than half the votes he needed to enter the Hall of Fame, the writers also said no to Roger Clemens, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro.

Sosa, Palmeiro and McGwire certainly never would have had their numbers without synthetic assistance. But Clemens and Bonds? Again, shame on you — you could have been in Cooperstown.

* From the Say What? Dept.: Thank God Manti Te’o didn’t win the Heisman Trophy …

I was an only child, and when I was little, I had an imaginary friend, Hector. I played cards with him, we walked to school together and, frequently, he and I chatted.

I never knew what Hector looked like. I didn’t tell people about Hector. And, in the end, Hector moved away.

I supposed I could have killed him off, but Hector and I loved each other.

In not telling people about him, I saved myself from embarrassment and, probably, trips to the child psychologist. I knew that no one could steal his friendship from me. (Don’t tell anyone, but Hector and I still keep in touch.)

The moral of this story? Thank goodness I didn’t have the Internet in 1957.

I wonder how this story of Manti Te’o’s dead “girlfriend” will turn out?

Regardless of the final version, the Heisman Trophy runner-up linebacker from Notre Dame can’t win.

Too bad Te’o doesn’t know Hector. He’d get some good advice.

Excuse me, please. I’m pulling the covers back over my head. Good night.

— Bruce Gallaudet is a staff writer at The Davis Enterprise. Reach him at bgallaudet@davisenterprise.net or 530-747-8047.

Bruce Gallaudet

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