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Lance, You Lost Me (Post 32)

“How do you feel about him…the fact that he cheated?”



“It doesn’t bother me,” she said.


“Why,” I asked.  “I mean, I know you.  You hate cheating.”


“I guess because I feel that everyone was doing it.  So, that’s what he did…to level the playing field.”


“Yeah, agreed,” I said.  “But, I have to say something’s not sitting right with me,” I added.


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As Wifesy and I started the descent of our California hike, I worked it out in my head and told her what I was thinking.


“I guess what bothers me most is that he KNEW he was lying and in order to protect his lie, he tried to destroy the character of other people.”


“What do you mean?” asked Wifesy.


“Well, from what I’ve read there was this woman, Betsy Andreu, whose husband was a cyclist on Lance’s team.  She testified for her husband against Lance.  They settled out of court.  She was just trying to protect her husband, so she told the truth about Lance’s doping.  In return, Lance called her a crazy bitch.  He knew he was lying and yet, he called her a crazy bitch.  That doesn’t sit well with me.  If you know you are lying and someone else is coming clean, say nothing.  Walk away, maybe.  But, to go on the attack when you KNOW you’re in the wrong.  Nope, I don’t like it.”


That’s how I feel right about now.  It’s not that Lance cheated.  I’m pretty sure a lot of people cheat in professional sports.  I’m not saying it’s right, but I’m also not 100% sure that I think it discounts all of his accomplishments.


But, when you lie, vehemently, and try to make everyone else look deceitful and crazy, there, I draw the line.


I know most people would draw the line at cheating.  So, I’m not sure what this says about me.  I suppose I’m just being honest.


I suppose, the way I see it, Lance involved himself in a ridiculous, underhanded, scheme that gave him an advantage.  However, so did a TON of other people.  Look no further than the investigation and you have to disqualify almost all of Team USA.  That doesn’t make it right.  But, it does make it more likely that someone will cheat.

For example, I was in an honors English class in high school.  We were in a later period of the day from the other English classes.  Every week there was a vocabulary quiz.  The students in the earlier honors class would give the answers to our later class.  When I was offered the answers, I didn’t want to take them.  But, I also didn’t want to have a lower grade because everyone else in the class had them.  So, I took them.  That’s what I mean about a level playing field.  If Joe Schmo is doing it and I have to compete against him, I want them.


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Now, let’s say someone in my English class was found out for having the answers.  In order to save himself, he turns the rest of the class in.  He calls us out.  What I would NOT do is say, “He’s a crazy a-hole.  I never cheated.  You’re gonna believe that guy?  He’s a loser in every way.”  If you are caught cheating, you have to own it.  A good person faces the consequences.  A sh*tty person deflects.


Everyone f*cks up.  But, I have no sympathy for people who blame their own crisis on the character of others.  I have no sympathy for people who will throw another person under the bus to save their own ass.


I don’t know.  What do you think?  Tell me all about your Lance theory.  I’m dying to know.  😉


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31 thoughts on “Lance, You Lost Me (Post 32)

  1. I’m with you. It sounds like if he hasn’t cheated he would not have been able to compete. Do I like that and give him a pass, no, but I understand it. The bullying and character assassination – that’s messed up. He destroyed relationships and reputations to cover his scheme. If he had simply said early on, “I did it, and here’s why I felt I had to” we would be seeing a very different outcome for both Lance and the sport.

    1. i honestly think him talking about it and ‘coming clean’ is making it worse. the more he talks, the less i like him. and i really liked him prior. i read his biography and loved his ‘story.’ now, i think he just may be an a-hole. sigh. this is what we get for putting humans up on a pedestal. xo, sm

  2. I have been trying to stay away from this whole thing as all I keep focusing on is the damage done to the cancer foundation he started. It has done a lot of good over the years. Of course if he was cheating at sports then perhaps we will find dirt in the organization as well. That being said…
    Cheating just because everyone else is cheating certainly isn’t acceptable but you are right, most of us would probably do it just to level the playing field or (insert your justification here). Lying about it and turning the tables on an innocent is the lowest of the low. If you did it at least have the ball(s) to own it.

    1. i really, really hope that nothing underhanded was happening with the charity. but, you’re right when deceit goes this far, chances are that it may seep into everything. “if you did it, at least have the balls to own it.” i couldn’t agree with you more, mg. and i’m really enjoying he who’s comments on here too. xo, sm

  3. I get that he didn’t handle being accused of cheating well….butttt…They all complied in it. They all got caught, took deals by tossing up Lance and they had to deal with his reaction. No sympathy for anyone involved. I have even heard stories in which reporters are saying if he had been nicer this all wouldn’t have happened….”like in baseball”. They all made money. The loser here is Live Strong. A great organization now associated with a great sports fraud. So he used the B word, so he called his massage therapist a whore, really? He was a mastermind of manipulation and don’t tell me they all didn’t know. Wonder how many books will come out of “I was a victim of Lance Armstrong”. More money to be made.

    1. you are right, it’s a never ending series of turds. however, i like to tink of a de tocqueville quote here: “I have no hesitation in saying that although the American woman never leaves her domestic sphere and is in some respects very dependent within it, nowhere does she enjoy a higher station. And if anyone asks me what I think the chief cause of the extraordinary prosperity and growing power of this nation, I should answer that it is due to the superiority of their women.” okay that was written cira 1442 b.c. (kidding, but long ago, is what i mean), however, i take the sentiment to mean, “a country is only as strong as its women.” i would take that further to say, “a man is only as strong as HOW he treats women.” here, armstrong is coming off as treating women very, VERY badly. that is a deal breaker for me. but, maybe i should’ve known that when he left sheryl crow for one of the olsen twins. i mean, feck me! anyway, i liked him and now i don’t much. a lot of it has to do with how he’s handling this. it’s not the hand that your dealt, but how you play the cards and all that… xo, sm

      1. I don’t think Lance has a “woman’s” issue problem. He is a simple narcissist. As woman, we tend to give to much power to words like bitch, whore, c**t. Why do we (from a societal standpoint) expect him to cheat with respect. Doesn’t make sense to me. He won at ANY cost. He did that very well. 7 times!!! Not the goal I would have chosen or method. Truth be told, the people who are hurt the most are his kids. They will always carry the failure of their fathers fame. Its not like he called Sheryl Crowe a B or his ex wife. Just wait a bit, I am sure we will read about it soon.

      2. lol. how right you are. it might be simple (complex?) narcissism in this case and that’s what women are going to get called. i’m not sure why in the feck he’s going after betsy harder than the actual guy on his team tho? maybe ’cause she’s more outspoken? interesting, nonetheless…

  4. My stance is a simple one: I don’t care one way or another. They can strip all they want: I saw an American crossing the finish line 7 times. As for the charity, how is it really affected? It’s done all that they claimed it would do (raise money for cancer research).

    Question: if everyone is doing it, is it still “cheating”, or is it simply playing?

    Did he dope? I have no idea. The only one that does is Lance. Did he lie? Yes, either before, or to Oprah. Regardless, I don’t care. It doesn’t affect me one way or another.

    This is something I do know: That commitee that said they tested his blood from 7 years ago? They lied their fecking asses off. Blood doesn’t last long enough especially when frozen. I also think it’s a damned shame that they decided to pick on the man for it 7 years *after* he fecking retired.

  5. I think all that we have at the end is our character. Hopefully we’ve lived a decent life and behaved in a decent fashion so that we’ll be remembered for our good character. I think Lance has destroyed any hope of that for himself. And I agree, attacking those who were telling the truth was a particularly low blow.

  6. This is a fiercely aggressive man who believes the end justifies the means – in winning or defending himself. Perhaps more importantly, he’s a leader, not a follower so the bullshit about ‘everyone’s doing it so why shouldn’t I?’ floats like a turd. He created a situation where others had to follow him if they wanted to be ‘competitive’ [hah].

    Lance Armstrong gets a huge THUMBS DOWN from me.

  7. Not sure what to say or think about Lance anymore. Was a huge fan when he was racing, fiercly loyal when the accusations started to ramp up one after another, and I was still believing in his innocence up until his confession. (And part of me hopes that the confession is the actual lie – it’s what people expected and so he said it just to get them off his back – but I know how unlikely that is.) I think more than anything I’m just dissapointed. I wanted to believe in his miracle recovery from near death to the top of his sport – I wanted to beleive that no matter how low we get in life there is always a chance for us to turn things around if we work hard and really apply ourselves we can make it to the top, we can be whatever we want to be. In the end though, I guess the lesson learned is we are all human, and the likelihood is that if we put someone on a pedastal they will come tumbling down eventually.

  8. Ahem. In my opinion, cheating along with the rest of one’s peers in order to “level the playing field” is a load of crap. Either you’re just a cheater, a lemming or you are just plain immature. I was too arrogant to cheat and really didn’t give a sh*t about the playing field. My thoughts on “the Lance” and Tiger, for that matter, is that they are idiots. They were blessed for a time but the idiot gene rose to the top.

  9. First of all shame on the Honors English teacher! And Fu@k Lance Armstrong. He did more then say she’s a crazy bitch…he sued anyone who spoke out against him! He is EVIL!

  10. I completely agree with you SM. Doping in sports just seems like the next logical step in a way; there’s limits to what the human body can do and what technology can improve. I am sure doping is a lot more rampant in sport that we’ll ever really know. But ruining other people’s reputation over a sports title makes you a dud of a human being. Especially when that achievement is predicated on lies to begin with.

    It also bothered me that he compared his lifetime ban to a death sentence. Like, really, Lance? You’re still free to walk around, ride your bike, earn a living. You’re just not able to go back to competition because you kind of shit the bed there. It’s pretty disingenuous to not accept your punishment with a little bit of grace.

  11. I, too, struggle with holding him responsible for cheating when everybody else was doing it. Doesn’t necessarily make it better, but … Yours is not the first thing I’ve read that has focused instead on what he did to other people who were willing to tell the truth. That’s the thing that is inexcusable.

  12. I figure whomever had second place was probably doping as well and it really makes no difference taking the win from him and saying someone else won now. But I totally agree. There were over a dozen people he went after hard and fast for, as it turns out, stating the truth. I could forgive him for ‘leveling the playing field’ but not for what he did to people in order to cover up his own lies.

    1. I should also say that I figured he was doping and my roommate and I got into an spat about a week before we found out about the interviews. My roommate insisted that Armstrong had not and simply gave up fighting the accusations because he was just worn out trying to fight it all the time.

  13. I’m compulsively honest. I expect everybody else to be too, so it’s a shock when I realize somebody is lying. The thing is, most liars are deceiving themselves, too. And they project: they think everybody else is lying and cheating too, so they blame and yell and accuse. It’s a mess and I try to stay away from people like that.

  14. I told hubby years ago about Lance, “There’s something not right about that guy.” Everyone screws up but to keep putting blame on people and trying to destroy their creditability and reputation — I don’t have time for people like that. I watched that interview and if body language is a clue to how people REALLY feel/are, then Lance should have practiced more with his publicist. He seemed, at least to me, disingenuous.

  15. Consistent with our earlier comment convo, I am made more upset by the fact that he lied and that he threw others under the bus – so despicable. But I am also, to a lesser extent, still mad and upset by the fact that he cheated. Increasingly, we need (and I want) people like Lance to set great examples. My logical side isn’t surprised, but somehow Lance seemed more personal, more impactful, to me because of the whole cancer story. I connected to it, and I connected to him. I allowed myself to look up to him, and I know that has now resulted in me feeling more intense feelings about this than others.

    It’s a loss of innocence for me to see Lance as the asshole he always was.

  16. I’m not a fan of “Everyone else is doing it, and I have to if I want to succeed.” Because then everyone ends up cheating, lying, stealing, or whatever. I’d rather see more people start standing up and saying, “I’ll do it the right way, no matter what.”

  17. Though I’ve never been an Armstrong fan or Livestrong devotee, I had a problem with the fact that he was cheating and didn’t think it was wrong. He excused himself by saying that he was only leveling the playing field – and he made it very clear that he didn’t think that there was anything wrong with that. A sociopath reacts similarly, unable to recognize that he or she has done something that is WRONG. Sociopaths don’t believe that rules apply to them; sound familiar, Lance?

    I’m not buying his apology; I don’t believe that Armstrong has had his come-to-Jesus moment. The reason he couldn’t say certain things during the Oprah interview is because he is testifying against the co-owners of the team at a later date. Lance cut himself a deal…and now he betting on the fact that Hollywood and sports love a comeback. They love it when a celebrity hits rock bottom and manages to climb their way out of the pit. But will they love it when Armstrong finishes telling the “truth” in order to save his own ass down the road and creates a new version of himself that it all about honesty within the sporting world? I hope not. Lance had multiple opportunities to fess up over the years and, as you pointed out, chose to use those opportunities to sue others – a costly and stressful endeavor which hurt his less financially secure enemies more than it hurt him.

    He’s a bad seed in my book.

  18. My husband is a cyclist so we’ve been following this story for a long time and I feel the same way you do. All of the elite cyclists in the European circuit dope. It’s disappointing but we’ve watched all of our favorite cyclists get busted for it. I’m disappointed in how he handled it. He burned a lot of bridges and was a complete douche. That’s the lesson I took away from this: don’t be a douche. Because one day you won’t be on the top of the heap. One day you’ll be in trouble and need help or support and then all of the people you burned are going to revel in your misery.

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