Thursday, January 17, 2013

Dope is for dopes

I wonder how he’s going to tell it.

After all the hoopla, seems a given Lance did it too. Was a ringleader in fact, a godfather. A slippery dick.

I am was a huge cycling fan, getting up at the crack of dawn for a few weeks every summer to watch the Tour de France in real time. Oprah (and the AP) have hinted he admits it, albeit forthcoming in a manner that surprised (even) her. 

Side question, why do the pop-culture-scandal interviews go to the ladies? Is it the Madonna mothering thing, soft and emotive, asking questions through kohl rimmed eyes? No disrespect, but we need another Mike Wallace (even my beloved, our-love-could-never-be Anderson Cooper I prefer to watch giggling through the fluffier pieces).

Maybe he lays blame on a god complex; the man beat cancer, an aggressive cancer, lived through and past it. It made him a icon, a touchstone for so many others. That attention, that struggle, that redemption could leave one feeling a bit immortal, somewhat untouchable.

Was it simply ego? Athletes (from casual yogi to gym rat) tend to have huge ones because it hurts so damn much, Goliath facing down legs that burn and lungs full of air on fire. The worst barking encouragement I hear from trainers and coaches as the fatigue sets in is, "You can do anything for one—or two or three—minutes." No. I can’t remain airborne or put my feet behind my head. Or watch old people porn or sit on a hot stove. So says my super ego.

We like our heroes, embrace those who do more than we dream for ourselves while sitting back watching, and find space to forgive because the redemptive comeback story is just as good. Lance stayed golden and Teflon while his peers and teammates were swallowed up whole by their truth. But, as it's told, he did it through intimidation and bullying. He hurt both foes and friends and left a lot of collateral damage. Tyler and Floyd and Levi. The Andreu’s and the LeMond’s.

And maybe tonight we’ll finally get to the bottom of that whole Sheryl Crow thing.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Life is what happens to you during an America's Next Top Model marathon

Three weeks are ticking down and I failed, miserably and wonderfully, on all the plans I made and all the "to do's" to do while on extended vacation.

I didn't re-visit the already written 400+ page memoir, didn't tie it up nicely into the traditional novel structure of conflict, complication and resolution to ready for a book proposal. Or write a book proposal. And the “mid-life-is-that-all-there-is-chick-novel” with (the real) John Taylor (no Simon Le Bon) as a major (if imaginary) character still exists only in my melon, as does the young reader tome whose concept is wildly interesting to a the 10-year-old who imagined it with me.

That was the goal, to stay behind the lilac writing desk tucked into a corner of my bedroom. I would forgo even showering and getting out of the leggings and oversize sweatshirts worn to bed the night before. I would write. For me. I would produce. 

But there was Christmas and getting the tree up, a beautiful thing, my first fresh tree in a decade. So soft I would absent mindedly pet it and loving refill the old-school metal stand with water daily. Its needles are now tipped in a white tinge of dehydration, parched and done. And with the holiday came intimate little cocktail parties and sweet presents, exploring with and enjoying friends and their young kids in the post-divorce holiday visitation cycle. Like cats drawn to people who just aren't that into them, kids dig me. They flock, take my hand and guide me through the Nature and Science Museum, call dibs to sit next to me in theaters and restaurants.

And there was the accident. A six-car-interstate-cruncher Christmas Eve eve that tested the karmic sense of grace and gratitude (much to the lovely girl who scooped us up freezing at a highway exit and drove us home) versus a focus on loss or blame (it was the dumb ass second car in). The crash left a curiously ugly and comically large deep purple seat belt shaped bruise across my abdomen, a Tommy Lee "Mayhem" tattoo looking thing. It's fading nearly two weeks on. 

Didn't make it to the gym once, but found time for wings and tempura veggies and homemade chili cooked with potatoes and topped with thick bacon, sushi and steak and pizza (plural) and popcorn with french fry salt. Yesterday was the first time I peed clear in weeks, water flooding out the the salt assault. I’ll get back into it, mostly yoga. Those pants are stretchy.

And even as I bemoan how much of this time was “wasted” that was also sort of the point, to regroup and revitalize and wake up late, have sex in the afternoon and watch marathons of “Snapped.”

This weekend while I pack up ornaments for a holiday that'll be here again quicker than one can imagine, I’ll mentally checklist what’s upcoming; another trip to Seattle at the end of the month (for music, real estate browsing and the meat trail mix sold only in Pike Market), dusting off the bag of old knitting stuff brought up from the basement (with fat yarn, absurdly large needles and a copy of Stitch 'n Bitch, I'm thinking scarf). Last Christmas I was given a beautiful ukulele and vintage case, and this year paid lessons to finally learn to play it.

So much to do.

Especially what happens while I’m busy making other plans.

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