Tuesday, February 10, 2009


seriously. the sports radio stations have been taken over by the latest breaking sh0cking report of yet another great american hero using steroids. i would like to bestow upon them the "just shut up award."

here is why:

first, does it SERIOUSLY shock you that this incredibly vain and notoriously prima donnaesque man would use steroids to stay at the top of his game? second, why does everyone seem so shocked but yet willing to believe that he 'suffered' from insecurity and the pressure to perform and live up to his giant multi-million dollar contract? why is the guy from the texas rangers so 'personally hurt' that a-fraud would have done such a thing while employed by him?


This is not something new. We all know that baseball is riffe with steroid use. I would be more shocked if you could have 100% infallible documentation that a baseball player had never used a performance enhancing drug of any kind legal or not! from redbull to anabolics, come on!

I love sports. LOVE them. I have never really played a sport competitively though unless you count my brief junior high stint as a bad ass volleyball player. My husband has though and I know that in his home town, it is not uncommon for parents to hold their children back from going on to 7th grade so that they can get one more year of size and 'maturity' before getting into the real tackle football. it's not illegal...so why not give them an advantage? 5 hour energy isn't illegal...and it gives an advantage according to osi umenyura (spelling?) the 5 hour energy guru on tv. well, steroids weren't really routinely tested for, so why wouldn't a baseball player take that advantage. it's our culture! must be the best, must be the thinnest, must be this must be that.

The emphasis on being bigger, better,faster, stronger is nearly as dangerous for men as the emphasis for women on being thinner, thinner and thinner. In baseball and football you have steroids, in football you also have concussion syndrome from playing through repeated injuries, you have seriously dangerous weight gain for the linemen... gorging themselves to make it to college ball or the pros. because they NEED to be so large.

And to me...it really seems like most of this pressure to be the best comes from both their own competitiveness to set records, but also from our desire to see the home run rather than the close game, to make our Pros into celebrity superstars. They get MILLIONS to play a game. MILLIONS. and the problem with this is that there doesn't seem to be any public support. Look at Vince Young from the Tennessee Titans, Brady Leaf, Michael Phelps and others...they get to the pros fresh out of college, and can't handle the pressure. They flake out, they use drugs, they can't handle criticism and the ridiculous expectations that their fans and the owners place on them....and they turn to steroids, they turn to anger, they turn to running away and talking about suicide. How about we put a counseling system in place for these young men? A better one that what's there, one that takes the stigma away from feeling pressured to be the best and not being able to handle it gracefully. And better yet, how about changing culture so it's okay for these guys to talk about it.

Will I stop buying football tickets or baseball tickets to try to end this cycle? No...I'll continue to pay exorbitant prices for my "American Pasttimes." Because I truly do love sports and i truly do enjoy watching the close games, sneaky wins and even the excitement of a blow out....but if my quarterback throws 6 interceptions on his birthday during the playoffs...I'm not going to really mind. I also wont be surprised or shocked if next year it turns out that good old Grady Sizemore's dabbled in some performance enhancers...There are 103 players on that list that they found Rodriguez's name on...i'd venture to say there's twice that that have used.

So seriously people....just shut up...or at least...quit acting like you're SO surprised.

3 things:
being able to watch sports and enjoy them for being a game
that my husband has no unrealistic expectations for our future children that might someday play sports
that there are some sports 'heros' that are clean, and are still talented.


Wolf said...

i hear ya. when this whole thing broke i was like...yeah? not surprised. i'm more surprised that it seemed so many others were so surprised...

i actually feel kind of bad for michael phelps. in reality, how many others out there have done the same thing and get a slap on the wrist...but because of who he is they have to make it into a huge thing and hurt him. geez, as many students as i found smoking pot in the residence halls, and they got 3-6 months academic probation...no police unless we saw a bong, etc. give the poor boy a break, people make mistakes. he just loves to swim. that puts him in the spotlight, and he can't help it necessarily...

b and i feel the same way about our kids. if they want to play...ok...but no pressure and we'd really love for them to just be happy...

Lump said...

ahahaha YES! I love this JUST SHUT UP award. I have many people I'd like to award it to. ;)


Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you. Princess Diana

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