Tuesday, August 31, 2010

R.I.P. Laurent Fignon...

Laurent Fignon died earlier today of complications from pancreatic cancer at the age of 50. If you're not a cycling fan you wouldn't know who he is, and the name would probably ring hollow in your household. Well, there is a reason why anyone who is a fan of sport should know who he is. He was one of the main protagonists of the most intense back-and-forth battle ever to be waged at the Tour de France. The overall performance by the men who fought each other for those three wonderful weeks in July transcends cycling. It is a monument to what true sport hopes to be but rarely achieves-a clash of titans-three men (France's Fignon, Spain's Pedro Delgado and Greg Lemond of the United States) at their physical peak going at each other like very few times in the recorded history of sport. We remember those rare times because they are so fleeting, which is why this man will forever live in cycling history-and deservedly so.

It is inevitable that his name will forever be linked with that of Greg Lemond, and for good reason. Lemond was the one who took that Tour win in 1989 after a nail biting finish into Paris which he won overall by the slimmest margin on record-8 seconds. But it was everything that lead up to that last stage, with Lemond chugging down the Champs-Élysées like a runaway train that made this Tour the most dramatic in modern-day history. But it wouldn't have been as memorable had it not been for the dogged determination of one Laurent Fignon.

Take a good look at modern-day sports. Where are the rivalries? Where's the drama? Where's the passion? We have college football, micromanaged by a bunch of tight-assed Stalin protegés who recruit talent-heavy classes and then get awarded bogus championships while beating opponents not worthy of their talents.

College basketball is a mess due to the dilution of talent, a ridiculous AAU summer league system that produces great athletes who lack the basic fundamentals and parody that exists in a game where the brightest stars have absolutely no interest in playing more than one year and then go pro.

Pro football-the majority of the Superbowls are overhyped pieces of garbage with the terrible half-time shows. When people watch the Superbowl for the commercials, you know what you're in for more often than not.

Baseball-you have the Yankees purchasing the best free agents in the game and everyone else trying to win with anonymous pieces that manage to put together one great run and then it's over for them.

The biggest story at this years' Tour ended with a resounding thud very early on as Lance Armstrong, fumbling and bumbling his way around France like a punch-drunk prizefighter way past his prime, was exposed as the pack jelly he truly is, an anonymous rider who failed to capture even one single stage win. He mumbled and stumbled his way to a very pedestrian 29th place without making so much as a ripple. Andy Schleck failed again to exhibit the type of firepower in the mountains he needed to display to dislodge Albert Contador, whose biggest move came during a controversial mechanical problem experienced by Schleck. The time Contador gained on Schleck that day came to be the overall margin of victory, 39 seconds.

Which leads us back to the drama that unfolded in July of 1989. You had Greg Lemond, the victor of the Tour in 1986 who was felled by a hunting accident and lost the two previous years to illness, injury and bad form. You had Pedro Delgado, who had won the previous Tour in 1988 under a cloud of suspicion due to a positive dope test which was overruled on a technicality. And then there was Fignon, who barnstormed his way through his first three years as a professional, winning the Tour in '83 and '84 but was hamstrung for years due to knee and Achilles tendon problems.

He was on demonstrative form in '89, beginning the year with a win in Milan-San Remo, taking the Giro D'Italia and usurping Sean Kelly as cycling's No. 1 rider. While Lemond, riding for a small Belgian team whom no one expected much from, struggled mightily in the Italian race but did manage a win in the final time trial. A harbinger of things to come, an unexpected return to form or the fact that Fignon didn't race all-out because by that point he already had the race in the bag? The stage was set for these three to duke it out in France...

The drama started from the opening bell. Pedro Delgado, riding the opening prologue in the leader's yellow jersey as the previous year's winner, showed up at the starting line 2 minutes and 40 seconds late. How or why is a mystery. Whatever the reasons, this was inexcusable given what was at stake.

Fignon, riding with a much stronger team (Systeme U-Gitane) than Lemond, wasn't too concerned. He and his team were going along nicely, winning the team time-trial during stage three after one of their lesser-known riders, Acacio da Silva, won the yellow jersey on stage one. He held the race lead for three days.

Lemond, aside form the low expectations and having to withstand a whirlwind of unfair criticism from the staid European cycling establishment for not being dedicated enough to the sport and for having a typical "American" attitude towards training and dieting, surprisingly won the leader's jersey after stage 5. He stated he just wanted to do well in the race and did not consider himself a serious contender for the overall title. But the mountains loomed, with the strongest riders having yet to show their cards or throw down the gauntlet. It was now the time.

(under construction)

Monday, August 30, 2010

The Girlfriend Experience...

Steven Soderbergh is at the enviable point in his career where he can afford to make a bad movie and move on to the next project as if nothing happened. This is rarefied air for Hollywood directors and many, even the good ones, don't have that luxury. But I'm wondering what the endgame is here, because his latest efforts have been ghastly. I'm not talking about your run-of-the-mill bad storyline, unfortunate choice of actors or anything like that. He has taken some very provocative subjects and has rendered them monumentally, unforgivably bad and singularly unwatchable.

How he was able to take an actor with the charisma and talent of Benicio Del Toro, put him in the shoes of one of the most compelling figures of the 20th Century (Argentine guerrilla Ernesto "Che" Guevara) and turn it into a 2-film, 4-plus hour magnum opus of sheer drudgery. Just trying to sit through these films made me feel as if I were sweating it out in some jungle trying not to go insane from the humidity, the incessant marching over mountainous regions and lack of amenities. A crashing bore form beginning to end.

And now we have the latest effort at existential navel-gazing from Soderbergh-"The Girlfriend Experience". The most provocative aspect of this film is the chance he took in hiring porn star Sasha Grey for the lead role, a role she plays to the hilt as one would expect from a vacuous porn star just in it for the easy money and exposure. Her performance is as flat as the pulse of a rotting corpse and stinks up the room with the same aroma.

We have her idiotic boyfriend, played by an equally terrible Al Santos, a personal trainer who spends his time trying to get his clients at an upscale gym to purchase training packages they clearly aren't interested in. His one big moment in the film is a showdown with his boss. He confronts his manager with an ultimatum-give in to his demands for a management level position or he's gone. But his manager, unimpressed, throws in the fact that homeboy is not a team player because he refuses to wear the gym t-shirt while working with the gyms' clients. Absolutely riveting stuff. How these two moron ever got together is one question-why they stay together is another that is never even touched upon throughout the whole film.

We then are subjected to an equally pathetic and annoying array of lonely, jag-off yuppies complaining about the state of the economy and the upcoming Presidential elections. One of the most cringe-worthy episodes involves a Hasidic Jew explaining to Sasha how she should vote for McCain because he's a friend of Israel, and the incessant advice over the course of the movie for her to invest in gold because in a tough economy it's a sure thing. Almost as sure as selling pussy to high-rolling biscuit heads.

The film is littered with drearily one-dimensional, washed-out characters who pathetically try to engage a whore in a deeper, more personal relationship to the point where you really start to feel that being a high-end call girl isn't what it's cracked up to be. Is the money really worth to have to spend time with these emotional cripples? For Sasha's character, it is a resounding YES only because she too is so utterly devoid of any human emotions that one wonders why her character is so fascinating to Sondbergh that he devotes a whole movie around the minutiae of her sordid and empty career.

Grey is actually not bad as Vincent Chases' girlfriend on the HBO series "Entourage", but that's because she's playing off other characters who can actually act. She is only asked to be herself, a porn star who demands to be taken seriously with legitimate roles in real movies while having her butt cheeks firmly entrenched in the line of work that made her famous.

Her 15 minutes will soon be up. Not because she's a terrible actress but because what makes her a porn star is what is holding her back. She oozes an icy emptiness of soul that will be a major impediment to any semblance of a legitimate acting career. It is too ingrained in her persona. Her face is blank and devoid of anything remotely resembling human feeling. She has had way too much cock in her face and up her ass. She has gulped too many gallons of semen for her to be anything but a circus oddity in mainstream films.

This film is a strikeout worthy of a Dave Kingman at-bat. Whatever you do, PLEASE don't waste your time watching it. It is a gigantically smarmy, self-impressed and horrifically boring piece of shit.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Born Ready, eh? Not quite, young man...

Lance Stephenson, the latest basketball phenom from Brooklyn to come out of Abraham Lincoln High School, is in trouble again with the law.

Again it involves an incident-a physical altercation-against a woman. This time it's his long-time girlfriend Jasmine Williams.

Again there are people coming out of the woodwork to make apologies and excuses for him.

Stephenson is a product of the same dysfunctional ghetto mentality that has laid low many other talented players from the 'hood. The second he exhibited talent he became a basketball commodity for his family and every single hanger-on in his periphery. Here is the problem-his parents. I've seen this a million times and the same act gets played over and over again like an insufferable soap opera. The characters change, the times change but the neurosis remains the same. You can go from 8-track tapes, $15 dollar Converse canvas sneakers and bell-bottom polyester-knit pants in the 1970's to the Ipods, $140 dollar kicks and $120 Ed Hardy t-shirts that are in vogue now. It doesn't matter. Human nature never changes.

Here is the issue-you have a bunch of working-class poor people who suffer from generational dysfunction. Many people from these backgrounds seem to be genetically predisposed to making terrible, self-destructive life decisions. This mindset gets passed down as a bizarre type of inheritance. It becomes more glaring in situations when a young star athlete is involved. It is obvious that Stephenson's family were not equipped to handle the pitfalls of raising a talented athlete, and one thing that stands out is the pressure they've put on him from a very early age to make it big, pressure that could have been avoided had they used discretion.

As a high school junior, he was the focus of a documentary series that was featured on the internet called "BornReady.TV". It's been said his parents benefited monetarily from this arrangement, but I can only dismay at the publicity grubbing involving a teenager in the 11th grade. Parents are supposed to shield their children from exactly this type of hype. But they not only didn't, they profiled many family members on the site who one could surmise were just looking for their 15 minutes of fame. There seems to be many failed characters giving this young man advice, using "family" as a cloak to rant about how they know what's best for Lance.

It's been painfully apparent over the years that they don't know shit about anything except being poor, but as this was their only opportunity to grab the spotlight and run with it, bad advice was sure to follow. Case in point-his senior year he was involved in a widely-publicized incident involving the groping of a young lady (a fellow student at Abraham Lincoln High School) which his white trash lawyer pleaded down to disorderly conduct. One could fathom the obvious scenario-a young, immature yet gifted athlete with entitlement issues, a young lady sending mixed signals and things getting blurred after that. This type of game-playing is a rite of passage in high school between students, but Stephenson should have used better judgment simply because as a star athlete he is a target. But his "advisers" decided to take the predictable track and blame the victim for Stephensons' irresponsible actions. Pure genius on their part.

Then came the college fiasco. A highly touted phenom who was dropping mad points on NBA players as a 15 year-old in summer league games goes to the University of Cincinnati where he gets little national exposure. How did this happen? Again, terrible guidance from the adults in his life. Many high-profile D-I programs shied away from his ignorant, obnoxious,entourage and the manner in which the groping incident was handled. All of the hard work undone in a matter of months because these jackasses can't manage to give this young man decent advice, and the inability on Lances' part to realize how these choices would impact his future.

It was becoming clear that one of Stephensons' major advantages would be nullified playing against better competition. There was no one on the public high school level in NYC who could physically match up with him, so he was able to pound away at smaller, weaker players and get his flatfooted, non-arcing jump shot off with very little effort. But college is different. He had a decent year at UC, but nothing spectacular. And he left the same way he came in-with no jump shot to speak of.

He averaged 12.3 points a game and was voted Big East Rookie of the Year, but hardly anyone saw him play, and the faults in his game were becoming apparent the more anyone DID see him. First of all, the Cincinnati Bearcats already had a similar player in forward Rashad Lewis. How were these two expected to play together? Did Stephenson's so-called "handlers" even take this into account? No, because they are clueless. And leaving after his freshman year for the NBA to get picked in the second round? WTF was that all about? Did his agent do any research or talk to NBA general managers to gauge where this kid was going to be picked? Because if he had, he would have told Lance to stay in school and watch his stock rise in a couple of years. All he had to do was be patient, work on his game and go to class.

He needed two more years at the college level to improve his game, mature as a young man and increase his draft stock. If the starving hyenas in his family couldn't have waited two more years after being mired in poverty for the last who knows how many generations, then it is apparent they don't give a rat's ass about him or his future. With a bit more work on his game he would have gone much higher than a 40th second-round pick. Even his hometown Knicks, as dysfunctional a franchise as there is in pro basketball, passed on him on draft day. But his family, fiending for that big pay-day to get themselves out of poverty, felt otherwise. "Born Ready" was anything but.

Here is Lance Stephenson on his desire to go pro after one year of college-

“After reviewing my options, it is now clear to me that the need to emotionally and financially support my family, especially my young daughter, along with my long-standing and burning passion to play in the NBA, outweighs my desire to return to the University of Cincinnati."

These are the things that guided his decision-making process. This is, by the way, the first time I've heard that he has a child. I would have thought someone in his entourage would have shown him how to use a condom as well, but that's expecting too much from this hapless crew of uneducated, jive-ass losers.

So uncle Rufus will get the new set of dentures he's been needing since his real teeth fell out at the age of 14, Grandma will get a whole new set of wigs and his father can finally retire from his bullshit day laborer gig. But after signing a deal with the Indiana Pacers, who are trying desperately to shed their reputation as a team full of players with serious character issues, they are presented with this latest nonsense.

Note to the Stephenson family inner circle-what the fuck are you assholes still doing in Brooklyn? Wasn't the point of all this to get the fuck out of Coney Island? Maybe in a different environment, Lance would not have had to throw his girlfriend down a flight of stairs after waiting for her to come home from a night of partying at 5 in the morning. He should have been waking up at that time to go work on his game. Instead, he sat in his home fuming all night, waiting for her to come home to give her the standard issue ghetto beat-down, par for the course when motherfuckers fuck up between the hours of 1 and 5 a.m. in the 'hood.

Frankly I'm surprised he didn't bust her upside her head with a half-empty 40-ounce bottle of Colt 45. But that's how unmarried, teenage, inner-city, parents behave. This is how they roll and it's how they'll ALWAYS roll. Which is why a person who lives in the 'hood has to get the fuck out the second they can and leave everyone behind and start over. New family, new friends, new environment, new everything. Fuck uncle Rufus and his fucking fake teeth. Let him keep chomping those greasy chicken wings from the corner Chinese take-out with his gums. If you gotta take anyone with you, take momma dukes. The woman that gave birth to you deserves some type of consideration. Everyone else? F-U-C-K 'EM.

This is my forecast for the Stephenson household-his father will soon divorce his battle-ax wife and shack up with a revolving door of younger, money-grubbing ghetto hoochies. He will spend his leisure time banging these little hookers and purchasing mucho bling in the form of expensive cars, jewelery, watches and the finest liquor money can buy. No more Paul Masson for this cat-now it's Hennesey up the wazoo, just like in those rap videos.

Lance will get into a nasty child support court battle because his girlfriend is just as young and stupid as he is. She's never been nowhere and neither has he. The spotlight and the money will be too much for them to survive together. We'll have another young, urban couple raising a child in a broken home. All the money in the world will not keep the ghetto mentality from creeping in and destroying this relationship. The hangers-on will juice Lance like Kool-Aid.

All the relatives will come out the woodwork asking for shit he can't possibly afford to give them-not on a yearly pre-tax income of $700,000. That sounds like a lot of money to most people but when you have so many family members on your payroll who have no concept of fiscal responsibility because they've never HAD any cash, I'll bet anything his first year's wages are already spoken for. Just ask that other distinguished Lincoln schoolboy standout Sebastian Telfair, who reportedly has 17 family members on his payroll. I'll bet anything this cat Stephenson is already in debt despite having not played one NBA game yet.

This will go on until the money runs out and they all wind up right back where they started-Coney Island, in the fucking 'hood. And that's if any of them actually leave. From what I understand Telfair's mother STILL lives in the same Coney Island project building he went pro specifically to get her out of.

This is the reason for my gloomy prediction-he has no one to teach him how to make basic, fundamental life choices. If he did he wouldn't have fucked up the way he has. Look at what he's done so far-dropped out of college after one year, had a child out of wedlock as a teenager, and has an antagonistic, physically abusive relationship with his girlfriend. This is the type of ghetto shit that was never supposed to happen to him. But his life choices seem to be no better than your average special-ed loser. And shame on his parents because Lance isn't from your typical inner-city broken home. He lives with both of them, which is a luxury few kids in the 'hood can brag about (just the fact that he knows who is father is puts him well ahead of his peers in Coney Island). It's as if his parents hired Huggy Bear from "Starsky and Hutch" to be his life coach.

Take away the basketball and, judging from his life choices so far, what you have is a stereotypical ghetto fool with no future. If you think money alters this type of ingrained dysfunction and the type of negative upbringing that creates generation after generation of losers, just ask Antoine Walker, who went through hundreds of millions of dollars and is now filing for bankruptcy. Or Kenny Anderson, who let one of the biggest hoochies this side of a Las Vegas whorehouse take him to the cleaners for everything he had and is now broke. That twat was on a reality show before she hooked up with Kenny, and anyone with half a brain should have seen this gold digging, hoochie coming a mile away. So much for street smarts.

I'm hoping for the best but I predict the worst. I've seen too many of these guys get taken down by money grubbing women and family members, who many times are their worst enemies. Abraham Lincoln High School has an incredible track record for producing basketball phenoms that do not translate well into solid pro players. Stephon Marbury had it in him and did well for many years, but is sadly out of the league way too young after fucking up with his hometown Knicks. Sebastian Telfair, after all the hoopla coming out of high school, is a journeyman point guard who quite possibly is on his last NBA contract. He's been passed around the league like a soggy chimichanga on Cinco de Mayo. Why? Because he never honed his skills in college. He suffered the same condition Stephenson suffers from-greedy family members who just wanted to get paid and who convinced these immature young men they were ready for the NBA when they clearly were not.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Leadvlle 100...

Hey everyone-check out the man who came in first in the women's race in Leadville-

The Leadville Tranny 100-they even have sexually ambiguous shemales as course marshals. Look at this one jumping up for joy on the left-

Sorry, but if you're a woman and you could be mistaken for Michael Moore (like the freak in the blue t-shirt with her arms in the air), do yourself and the rest of us a favor and pack it in.

What a horrible race this must have been for the fans out on the course. There is no end to how steroids are permeating even bullshit events like this one, a 100 mile obstacle course full of weeds, hills, rocks and from the looks of it the ugliest-man-bitches this side of female bodybuilding.

I was going to do my due diligence and research this race, but I can't. The winner, pictured above being cheered on by a pit bull of a dyke on the left, is so obviously on horse steroids that I don't even want to know anything about it. The pictures alone are enough to let you know what type of "athletes" show up to compete.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

NBA News...

One of the stories that dominated the weeks I spent away from the blog was the free agent bonanza of the summer of 2010. It was finally here, and the pundits went bananas. Sports news consisted of mainly one question-"Where will Lebron land?"

During the time my computer was down, I resorted to listening to sports talk radio to kill the boredom-specifically ESPN and WFAN in NYC. Yes, it took all of 5 minutes to get sick of these characters with their incessant over-analysis. The amount of actual reporting was minimal-the amount of conjecture was what dominated the airwaves to no end. No one really knew anything, and if you know what sports talk radio is like, the less these guys know the more they talk AS IF they know.

These morons hung on every word sputtered by the equally clueless Chris Broussard of ESPN. He seems like a nice enough guy. He certainly isn't an obnoxious, grating, self-promoting blowhard like his fellow colleague Steven A. Smith. But it turns out Steven was the one who got it right way before the new "Big Three" signed with the Miami Heat. Smith is the type of guy you love to hate-loud, opinionated, and seldom right. He's been drubbed out of Philadelphia, got his show "Quite Frankly" yanked out from underneath him and was unceremoniously bounced from ESPN. But his prediction put him back on the relevancy radar, and he's doing well at Fox Sports. So props to Steven A. for resurrecting his career with the only bit of reporting during this time that turned out to be true.

Broussard, on the other hand, was going in the opposite direction with his commentary. He had the Chicago Bulls as frontrunners since April, but had no hard evidence to back this assertion. He simply did what you and I were doing from the comfort of our couches-he analyzed the amount of cap space they had, looked at the players they could potentially surround James with and went with the prediction, but put it forth as a prediction based on intelligence gathered from "sources", or so he said.

But this conjecture passed on as fact wasn't the most nauseating aspect of his commentary. It was how he kept mentioning Joachim Noah as if he were the next Bill Russell. The guy is actually a light-in-the-ass version of Anderson Varejao without the offense. He's as good as he is because he really does give it "110%", a physical and mathematical impossibility until you see him play. If he doesn't play with the volume turned up to eleven every night, he's a goner in this league. Straight-up. He is the ultimate over-achiever. If he were three inches shorter there would be nowhere for him to play in the NBA. And despite his propensity towards smoking weed, he's not that fucking high all the time that he doesn't know it, so he seems hell-bent on capitalizing on the situation. Let's face it, at his height what the fuck else is he good for? Kudos to Noah for being aware of his limitations and conducting himself accordingly by maximizing the time between now and when he would have to go out and get a real job.

(under construction)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Armstrong Chronicles...

When this whole thing started, it was 'Roid Floyd Landis making accusations against Lance Armstrong and a host of others. He claims an organized doping program was in place during his time as a rider at the US Postal cycling team and directly implicates Armstrong not only as a user but as a supplier. Due to Landis' credibility issues, which run the gamut from lying in court during his doping trial, the slimy phone call from his then-manager to Greg Lemond ridiculing him about his childhood sexual abuse in the presence of Floyd, to taking money from supporters to mount his ridiculous defense that he never used PED's to win the 2006 Tour de France.

Armstrong and team director Johan "The Hog" Bruyneel at first presented a confident and united front, attacking Floyd personally as being a man angry with the world to thiis little gem from Armstrong himself-"It's his word against ours. And we like our word".

Still feel that way, big guy?

Because thanks to Jeff Novitzky and his merry band of Federal agents, it is no longer Landis' word against yours. Let us deal not in conjecture, but in fact to ascertain where we are at the present moment-

1) The Feds are in the process of questioning athletes who rode with Armstrong, handing out grand jury subpoenas as we speak. Already another ex-Postal rider has verified claims of widespread and systematic drug use within the team, but his name has not been leaked as of yet.

2) Greg Lemond has been asked for documents relating to his case against his former employer Trek Bicycles, which he won.

3) The Feds are not after cyclists who doped per se. They are looking into the financial aspects of the team and believe strongly that public money from the US Postal sponsorship was used to finance an organized doping ring, which constitutes fraud. But the information revealed from the doping side will shed light on the machinations behind Armstrong's improbable success at the Tour.

4) Here is an excerpt from a Newsweek article profiling the rift between Landis and Armstrong-

"Armstrong’s associates suggest that Landis launched his campaign against the seven-time Tour winner after Armstrong rejected Landis’s efforts to make a comeback. Johan Bruyneel—the manager of Armstrong’s Radio Shack cycling team, which was assembled in July 2009—tells NEWSWEEK that Landis contacted him last October or November seeking a spot. Bruyneel says he turned Landis away because of his reputation as a doper. “I told him it would be a bad PR move” that could damage the new team’s efforts to win entry into the 2010 Tour, Bruyneel says."

If that last sentence doesn't make you gag at the level of hypocrisy and hubris exhibited by Bruyneel, then nothing will.

Armstrong's lawyers, two cracker-ass good ol' boys from Texas named Bryan Daly and Tim Herman (who sound like they stepped off the sound stage of the '70s Hillbilly variety show "Hee Haw") are resorting to tactics used to similar effect by ambulance chasers and jive-turkey law firms that have little to no scruples when it comes to interpreting the law. So far, these two jackasses have stated that Armstrong is willing to cooperate only if the investigation isn't a witch hunt.

How humble of Lance to tell the Feds how they should go about their investigation.

They also claimed the Feds are offering immunity deals in exchange for testimony incriminating their client. Wrap your head around this nonsense for a second. They are accusing the Feds of asking riders to change previously given testimony in exchange for leniency just to nail this one asshole.

And the best one they saved for last. Herman stated the investigation is "Un-American". What is it then, French? Previously, the jingoistic hogwash spewed by the fanboy retards was the French were out to get Armstrong out of bitterness and jealousy because a French rider hadn't won the Tour in 1986. Nothing could be further from the truth. Despite his nauseating public persona, the French have always admired Armstrong. But like an amoeba that can only thrive in nuclear waste and toxic sludge, Armstrong needs to feed off negativity, real or imagined.

Armstrong has stated that he has done too much for too many people for this to be happening to him. Really, Lance? Why don't we ask Filipo Simeoni, a rider you tormented to no end right until he retired? Armstrong, aside from all the lying, needs to go down for this if for nothing else.

The manner in which he treated this anonymous Italian rider who, in the twilight of his career after winning the Italian National Championship was excluded from representing his jersey in the Giro D'Italia because Armstrong told the Giro organizers he wouldn't bless their race with his presence if Simeoni was there. So the organizers took the unprecedented step of excluding the national jersey wearer from their own national race to placate Armstrong's ego and thirst for revenge. Now the bad karma is coming back to hit him square in the face and he doesn't like it. It's "Un-American", don't you know!!!

I've addressed this issue previously but it bares repeating-he has manufactured a superhero image to the cancer community to enrich himself, grow his public persona as a crusading do-gooder and to live a celebrity lifestyle few of us could ever envision. The truth of the matter is he has hijacked the cancer community and has held them hostage with a fake message of hope-"LIVESTRONG"-that resonates like a shrill, overbearing cow bell at a Mott the Hoople 30th Anniversary concert-

*Here is a quote from a poster called "the Hog" from the Cyclingnews.com forum that explains the whole "fighting cancer" issue from the "Livestrong" perpective-"

There are many cancer charities that provide support for cancer patients by supplying nurses, home care and treatment advice and counseling. The fundamental keys to outpatient support. And funny enough all the things Livestrong doesn't do."

I have a message to all the unadulterated idiots who in any way shape or form condone or make excuses for this man. Here it is-

Those of you who have it cemented into your pea brains that Armstrong has done so much for the cancer community, or that he has raised millions upon jillions of dollars for the fight against cancer, or that he inspires millions of cancer sufferers and survivors, do us all a favor and please, please, please get your heads out of your asses already with this bullshit.

1) He has perpetually lied to the cancer community and the whole world about how he won his seven Tours.

I'm also fairly sure said charities providing support don't need the use of a private jet to operate

2) He has lied to the corporations that have paid him handsomely to sponsor their products.

3) He's lied to every corporate cocksucker who has ever sat in an auditorium listening to his drivel about Living Strong and "fighting" cancer. Newsflash for you fanboys-you don't "fight" cancer-your oncologist "treats" it. That's how it's done. The difference isn't just a question of semantics-it's the chasm that lies between the perception and the reality. The difference is that a fairy tale is a concocted series of silly little events where the ending is always a happy one because the hero is honest, hard-working and is morally and ethically above reproach. Little kids need fairy tales-adults need to get a fucking life.

4) He has lied about the use his personal appearance fees, pocketing millions from various race organizers during his "Hope Rides Again" comeback last year-money that he pledged would go straight to his foundation but strangely enough wound up in his personal bank account.

5) He has mercilessly bullied riders and has made a complete mockery of the ideal of fair play in sport. He's been a serial celebu-whore dater (al whom morbidly look exactly like his mother) and breeds like a man who has never fathomed the concept of birth control, much less monogamy.

6) His every move is a contrived and insincere ploy to call attention to himself. He has enriched himself by marketing and selling a brand-Livestrong-that is nothing but ether. (I guess it's called intellectual content-regardless of the fact that the color yellow is one he stole from the leader's jersey of the Tour de France).

So the fanboy denials remains the same-

"So what if he doped? He's done too much good for too many people."

"If he doped, so did everyone else."

"Given this fact, he was still the most naturally talented rider and would have won the same number of Tours if everyone else rode clean."

"This investigation is a witch hunt."

"But Landis has no credibility."

Unfortunately for the fanboy cretins who gurgle this putrid bile, all the obfuscations will turn out to be complete and utter bullshit once the Feds get done interviewing all the pertinent people. Very soon this house of cards will fall. Here is hoping it happens soon. I want it to be messy and ugly. For Simeoni, for Greg Lemond, for all the people this slimeball has looked in the face and lied to for all these years. It's over, pal. You should have stayed retired the first time. And you should have gotten Floyd Landis a job the second he was done serving his suspension. You wouldn't be where you are if you had just done these two things.

That's right, asshole-it's over. You are officially-