There are so many intelligent and articulate people covering the hard-hitting
issues in our country these days, that I felt it was my duty to cover the
rather inconsequential bullshit that tends to make up the vast majority of
our lives. Actually, I'll just be griping a lot which, if you weren't aware,
doubles as a synonym for complaining, and as a descriptor for
a sharp pain in the bowels.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

A Note to Cheaters: The Truth Tends to Come Out

No, I'm not talking about this Cheaters, but that was a pretty sweet show to watch about six years ago. The host in that link is a totally different guy than I remember, which isn't surprising since the original host, Tommy, got stabbed by an exposed cheater during one of the more outrageous episodes.

The cheating I'm referring to comes back to sport and, more specifically, the sport I follow the closest: track and field. To be honest, a lot of my focus in track is on high school performances because I feel like they have the greatest likelihood of being completely legitimate — that is, untainted by drugs. Drugs is rarely far from the forefront when discussing athletic performance these days and in endurance running it's no different. Today (or a couple of days ago to be completely accurate) that man is Rashid Ramzi. This isn't the first time I've talked about Ramzi being a potential drug cheat, but with this recent revelation my claims are a bit less unsubstantiated. Still, they will test his B sample of urine to see if that also tests positive for CERA, a supplement boosting erythropoietin levels and thus red blood cell production in the body. And if that comes up negative, I will still consider Ramzi a cheater, which might not be fair, but it's hard to ignore along with his accelerated progression in performance. The truth is in the urine.

As much as I want to single out the suspect 2008 Olympic 1500m champion, the ugly truth is that this is just everywhere. I would like, for once, to watch someone do something completely amazing in athletics and not have to be thinking, "I wonder if he's on drugs." Take two groups of four kids running 7:31 and 7:32 for the 4x800m relay, now that is amazing. Could some of those kids be on drugs? Sure, I mean Hell, allegedly A-Rod took steroids in High School and I certainly know kids at my own school that used, and some weren't necessarily athletes. But, and it's a big but, the chances are much more remote and I'll continue to view those performances with a bit of awe.

Switching to a more somber tone, there was a tragic development in my hometown as a high schooler dropped dead today at track practice. Given the time frame in that article I find it even more strange and unsettling as I was out on a run at the very same time this kid was. These things happen what seems like far too frequently so I'll just take a moment to pay my silent and [relatively] anonymous respects here.

I already do cherish every run and I suggest you do the same, but aside from that, as clich├ęd as it is, we really must try to remember to cherish every day, even if it's only just a little something here and there, like the amusing manner in which children move like miniature humans and sometimes speak with wisdom we feel is supposed to be reserved for those advanced in years. It's the little things people, it's the little things...

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