13 November 2012

It's been a long time

It's a good news kind of day

I know, I know, I've been absent. I am so sorry.

I'm back in Colorado, my dog has retained his high-altitude ball fetching skills (even though he spent the last 5-6 weeks near the beach in beautiful sunny southern California), and my Mother is doing fine.  That is the best news of all. Never ever spend 34-days in the hospital if you have any choice. That's what my Mother did. They call her a miracle, I call her extremely tough and tolerant. I do not care for hospitals and wonder how I ever spent years working in healthcare, and why they combine the words health and care to describe what people go through in those places. It is one of those places I hope to forget, soon.

Strange how the biggest baddest months in cycling went down while I was holding vigil in a hospital. Strange how it puts it all into one big ball of perspective of who cares about Lance Armstrong! The only thing I care about is all those people who should have won when he stole the win (by cheating) and all those dollars spent on Livestrong (and redistributed by Livestrong) when that good cash could have gone to true cancer research. What a major pain in the distraction Lance Armstrong was.

I sure am glad I never went hog-wild over that guy, in fact he became a real pain in the process of trying to view the Tour de France as a fan. Body guards, throngs of fans, rope lines, inner circles, American brashness - I quickly soured of his effect on cycling some time ago. Nobody else seemed so totally unapproachable as Armstrong. Every World Champion or up-and-coming rider I have since stood next to was so much more real then Armstrong ever was. Perhaps next time we will know what to watch out for.

I find this image eerily creepy and downright disturbing ... do you think he will ever get it?
(Image tweeted by Lance Armstrong 3 days ago.   Poignantly alone.)
It's not about the cheating

I am sorry Phil Liggett, but I want to punch you out for saying that everyone doped therefore you find it hard to believe that Lance Armstrong did not. That is not the point and does not help the future of cycling; we all know not everyone doped, we also know some were better dopers than others, and we know it was not only about the doping. It was about the coercion, bribery, libel, slander, intimidation, blackmail, evasion, and generally ruining an otherwise good bike ride. Lance Armstrong is a thug. There are cheaters in sport, but thugs have no place in sport, and any triathlete who is willing to encourage a race organizer to abandon USAT to allow Armstrong to compete against weekend-warriors in the USA for his ego, is contributing to diminishing the sport of Triathlon. Just say no.

I say - place your support where your heart is

Donate to genuine cancer research
Support clean riders, teams, and races
Buy the products of sponsors who speak out
Ride your own bike race
Train for your own bike ride
Take your own trip to climb Alpe d'Huez

If Lance Armstrong has taught me anything it is that sometimes bad people do get their comeuppance. Also - apparently I am not as slow a bike rider as I thought. I would watch mere mortals plod along up the routes of the Tour de France only to witness the pros sail by with nary a grimace. Heck I did the Galibier "on bread and water," in fact I did all those cool rides in France clean, and my slower pace did not diminish the thrill one iota. If you love riding a bike, the shake-up in the sport will not affect your ability to spin the pedals and chase your own dreams.

While the world of cycling shook - I was in California (but not on my bike)
Laguna Beach, California
And road tripping it back and forth (with a few hikes) across beautiful Utah with my dog
Jack Denny, the enormous Labradoodle
Hi Mom! I was happy to spend the time with you. Next time let's do it someplace fun.