Finally committing to 2013 here, and going to bypass my seething angst and obsidian heart for the latest football drama. Since my son is here, not by choice, taking a forced 'gap-year' between college and independence, I've been seeing the Ravens as a sports version of Bad Brains and getting into the play-offs. So this little made-for-2013 story about Manti Te'o piqued my interest especially. The operative phrase seems to be 'perpetrated against'. I mean, my son is certainly the victim of a hoax perpetrated by an ex-girlfriend/drama queen who torments him on facebook with sexy little quips about her activities when they're hundreds of miles apart, and posts photos of herself looking considerably more playboy-friendly than when she sits around on my sofa. Men do set themselves up for these things. They are bewitched and e-enticed by all kinds of minx-ness. Every day I get friended by some Russian pin-up photo who has exclusively male (dumb) names in her friend-list. Six months ago I read 83 million facebook pages are dupes. Seem like a valid way to find your spouse, especially when you are a Heisman Trophy candidate and set to earn 8 figures for maybe the rest of your life?
But maybe the operative phrase here is 'perpetrated by'. I mean, how dumb can guys be (rhetorical!) re: women? Despite all the TV pseudo-reality shows and Lifetime movies, people seem to fail to proceed with emotional caution when pheromones and egos are involved. Something definitely smells bad here... the pity factor, the pageant-worthy bs, the whole story. No one loves a tragedy more than sports fans. No one loves a stellar performance on the field right after a family loss or illness. We are sensationalists and voyeurs; the more icing on the cake, the more takers. We tweet and gossip and indulge in our broken-hero stories. What I want to know is which came first-- -the hoax or the death? Was he trying to cover up his mortifying gullibility with a story he thought no one would question? And the big question here: does his online-dating IQ, his lack of judgment, his possibly perjurious action affect his performance on the field?
The whole world is a hoax. Airbrushed photos, fake Facebook posts, botox and plastic surgery faces, altered bodies, clothes that don't fit, bodies that have been trained into shapes that were never genetically intended, athletes breaking natural records with drug-enhanced ability, spell-check, corn flakes, pitch-correction, ridiculous dog-breeds and talking monkeys, perfume and deodorant, ultra-white teeth and spray tan. So of course we wag our pointed fingers even more furiously because we hold these athletes to higher standards? Like politicians? I mean, the guy wasn't advertising his genitals on youtube. He wasn't even breeding vicious dogs. So he's a fame-mongering creep. We've got Ron World Peace Artest. We've got Lance(d) Armstrong (was his name even real?). We've got deflated homerun champions and Allstars who beat their wives. He's got to perform in front of millions and millions. Perform. What's the deal? The deal is: can he play or can't he? Michael Vicks, what's your take on this? I'll let you pass judgment for me.
On the lighter side, I need to get some gym-issues off my chest. We all work out, but there should be a rule against tiny shorts for people over 35. Especially men. The girls who can pull it off-- -well, they don't. But I cannot fathom what possesses these middle-aged women to wear a sports bra and bicycle pants--- or a midriff-baring outfit... I mean, we all have flesh, but no one wants to look at the true confessions of a 50-year old. I work out at odd hours; the trendy crowd has better things on their agenda, so you get the genuine weirdos and smelly eccentrics. The old lefty 60-something psychologist women who have finished their evening appointments and need to vent (fun) and the left-over undateables who whine and complain and watch Law and Order reruns. The anorexics and bulimics who watch the food channel, and some bona-fide artists who have lost all sense of time and schedule. I am sometimes among them, days when I am reclusive and writing and solitary and I go to insert some semblance of routine and human contact into my dark life. The lights alone are an assault. I can watch
Anderson Cooper getting old or Joan Rivers nailing the fashion bs or the Kardashians.
So maybe Manti Te'o wanted to be something he isn't-- maybe he doesn't see his pathetic image-manipulating is as ridiculous as that woman in my Latin Dance class with her wheels of fishy flesh hanging over the spandex shorts, in the front row, flubbing all the steps with attitude like she's Shakira's dance instructor. He wanted to be Tom Brady, or even Reggie Bush or some five-minute hero. He wanted not just the football trophy but the Mr. Congeniality Award, the Most Obstacles Overcome, the guy that gets the ovation, with the teary crowds. He could taste it. Or maybe he's just a kid who fell for a face and wanted that face to represent not just passionate romance but values, and it was just a face. You don't get to the NFL by making a facebook page with fake statistics; the guy obviously worked for some years, and with all the sports-doping, pederasty, bank crookery, Federal reserve swindling and plagiarism going on these days, realize we are all hoaxed by the hoax, and people are being massacred in Syria--- maybe incredibly talented football players who will never get to hold a ball in front of any crowd or their loved-ones who have all been brutally murdered--- and no one is crying. So this guy is just a guy. Let him go to confession on Sunday and leave it at the door. Draft him for his skills not his fairy-tale potential because the real joke is on us for watching and listening and binging on all the excessive media fluff and stuff. Let the game begin.