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Pepe Lepew On January - 12 - 2010

About 100 years ago, in a small town in a galaxy far away …

I was actually a crime reporter.

No, I didn’t wear a fedora, I didn’t keep 20-year-old bourbon in my desk drawer and go through a carton of cigarettes a day. I wasn’t particularly hard-bitten, but yes, I actually was a crime reporter. Fascinating stuff sometimes. Depressing some days. Scary other days. But, fascinating most days.

There was a weird crime I got involved in, actually more than a real reporter is supposed to. I didn’t have any food at home, so I ordered a pizza from a local take-out place. This really was a small town in the Pacific Northwest, so this kind of funky take-out place also had movie videos (No DVDs yet), CDs, beer, groceries and gas.

I pulled into the parking lot and some guy peeling out the parking lot nearly nailed me. OK, that was weird, I thought. I walked in and it got weirder.

Two people were lying on the floor of the store in puddles of their own blood. One was a young woman, the other an older guy. I thought at first they had been shot. I found out no one had called 9-1-1 and I made the call to the police. Other people tried to stop the bleeding. The woman was shrieking hysterically. The cops showed up about two minutes after I called.

Here’s what had happened. Some kid had tried to buy beer. When he wouldn’t show his ID, he went completely monkeyshit on the clerk, a 19-year-old girl. He beat the crap out of her, then when a 60-year-old guy tried to intervene, he beat the crap out of him, too. People told me the guy was literally stomping the poor guy in the head with his boot. Then, the bad guy peeled out of the parking lot, sans beer. That’s the guy who almost nailed me.

The two people were loaded into ambulances. They were hurt, but not as bad as it looked. The older guy had a broken nose and broken cheekbone. He had to undergo a couple of surgeries. The young girl just a bloody lip and bloody nose and black eye.

They didn’t catch the guy. OK, this is how weird things get at small-town newspapers. I was a material witness. And I’m the one who called 9-1-1, but I actually had to write the article about the incident. Totally unethical. I talked to my editor about how weird it was, but he shrugged his shoulders. Obviously to him, it wasn’t all that weird. That’s small-town journalism. At a real newspaper, I would’ve been pulled off the story. It ran at the bottom of page 1.

Well, a couple of days later, there was another weird incident. Someone got in a verbal altercation at a local mini-mart and the “perp” chased the other guy, who was an all-conference linebacker at the high school getting some serious attention from UW and WSU (He eventually played at Western Washington Univ.), down the street as he tried to drive away,.

The suspect literally punched through the driver’s side window, pulled this 225-pound all-conference linebacker out of a moving vehicle and beat the crap out of him in the middle of the street.

A few days later another incident. The cops got called to a domestic dispute at a trailer. They arrested the guy and it apparently took five or six cops to subdue him. They peppered sprayed him, and after a lot of struggle, got him in cuffs and dragged him off to jail.

It turns out all three incidents were by the same guy. I went to his preliminary hearing, because I thought this was bizarre. This guy, who was HUGE. He was probably about 5-foot-10 and I’m guessing weighed at least 250 pounds, had assaulted a total of six people, including two cops, within a week. One person, the 60-year-old hero in the pizza joint, was still in the hospital. At the hearing, where bail is set, the guy got up before the judge and said something I will always remember:

“It wasn’t me, judge. It was the steroids.”

I thought, huh? I dug a bit. It turns out the guy, who was only 19, was a weightlifter and had been a wrestler on the high school team, and took a boatload of steroids as part of his weightlifting regimen. I started some research, and found out there really was something called “’roid rage.”

Now, since then, I’ve heard that “Roid Rage” is a myth, but I read the police reports on this guy. He was acting like a complete lunatic. Based on that case and others, I think it’s a legitimate phenomenon.

The guy eventually skipped bail, got tracked down in Arizona and did 18 months for his various crimes.

Fast forward a few months later. Some players on the high school football team got busted for drugs, DUIs, etc. Some of the drugs they got busted for were anabolic steroids. A few weeks after that, a couple of the players, a pair of real psychos, had a sick scheme in which they would get cheerleaders falling down drunk, then they would rape them while they were passed out. Those two asshats got 18 months in prison eventually for raping anywhere between four and 10 girls.

At their prelim, they brought up “it wasn’t me judge, it was the steroids.”

I finally scheduled an interview with the county sheriff, and I pointed out all these cases to him and he told me there appeared to be a major steroid trafficking ring in the county and it was mostly directed at young athletes.

So I did a story about the steroids trafficking in the town, focusing on the guy who went monkeyshit in the pizza place, then the jocks getting girls drunk and raping them (Did the steroids turn them into rapists? I doubt it, but I think the steroids were part of these jocks’ drug and alcohol culture). It ran at the top of page 1.

A few years after that, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa had their steroid-fueled home run chase. I just I didn’t know much about steroids then. I took them for a while when I was a kid for asthma and they did make me gain weight. I had a bad feeling about what was really going on. I just looked at them and thought their bodies did not look natural. At the time, McGwire, credited getting new contact lenses and seeing the ball better.

Well after 10 years of evasiveness and “no comment,” McGwire, as most of you know, admitted this week he was a longtime steroids abuser, and he was taking steroids in 1998. I believe the only reason he admitted it is he is starting a new job this spring with the Cardinals, and he didn’t want to be hassled over the steroids questions any more. He has seen how fans have given a pass to Pettitte, A-Rod and Giambi for admitting their PED use.

What’s my reaction? At this point? “Meh!” That’s the reaction of most people, I think. I think we all simply have “steroids fatigue.” I’ve somewhat lost interest in busting people over what was going on 10 and 15 years ago.

Let’s face it, probably most of the players in baseball in the 90s and early 2000s were doing steroids. Look how many people have been caught – Manny Ramirez, A-Rod, Giambi, David Ortiz, McGwire, Canseco, Palmeiro, Juan Gonzalez, Pettitte, Lenny Dykstra, Rick Ankiel, Troy Glaus … and how many more have been implicated, Bonds, Clemens, Bret Boone, Sosa, Brady Anderson. These names are just the tip of the iceberg. There are many, many more. Baseball knew it. It looked the other way. Because home runs drew fans.

As an aside, I find it interesting how forgiving fans are to the athletes who cop to it; and how unforgiving they are to those who refuse to admit their steroids use. It’s some weird American psyche about just confess your sins and let’s move on, but if you don’t, we will never let it go. People get more angry over the lying than the actual cheating. I don’t really place a value on that; it’s just an observation.

And I believe the doping goes back further than people want to think about. Remember Carlton Fisk? Decent home run hitter, but never put up huge power numbers with the Red Sox. His best power year was 26 home runs in his mid-20s. But in the mid-1980s after a few down years, he had a huge power surge at the age of 37 in 1985. He hit 37 HRs at 37 … as a catcher. He hit 19 home runs at age 40. He hit 18 HRs at age 42 and again at age 43. No catcher had ever done anything like that before. I’m sorry. I can’t believe he did that naturally. At the time, he credited a weight-training program and “better nutrition.” (He really did.)

I’m going to throw out another name. Nolan Ryan. He struck out 1,440 batters after the age of 40, and his post-40 ERA was under 3.40. Power pitchers simply never did that before. Their bodies broke down. You just can’t keep throwing a baseball in the upper 90s into your late 30s. Bob Feller was done at 35. Walter Johnson was done at 37. Bob Gibson’s last good year was at 37. Nolan Ryan developed a sick breaking ball, but he was still throwing 97, 98 and striking out 200 guys a year at age 44. At the time, Ryan credited his weightlifting and “good nutrition.”

Let’s face it, most cyclists in the 90s and early 2000s were using PEDs (cyclists probably don’t do a lot of steroids. EPO, synthetic testosterone, CERA, and other people’s blood are their PEDs of choice) – so many have been caught – Basso, Vinokourov, Riis, Pantini, Rasmussen, Heras, Ullrich, Mayo, Landis, Hamilton … and others implicated, Contador. Let’s be honest, even Lance Armstrong will always carry the taint of doping with him, whether he is guilty or innocent. Several of Armstrong’s teammates have has been busted for doping … after they left his team. And Armstrong beat all of these other people, for seven straight years, who were caught doping. Does that mean he was doping too, or just that good? Who knows? That’s another one of the bad things about PEDs, they implicate everyone, whether they have been found guilty or not. (And I’ll be honest, I’m doing the same thing here with Fisk, Ryan and another name in a moment.) But, if Armstrong has doped, he never got caught. And I’m tired of that debate. And I guess at this point, it’s old news, and it’s moot.

Here’s the reality. 10 years ago, doping was equally out of control in both cycling and baseball, and you know what? Wake up. Doping has been, and I suspect still is, rampant in football, basketball and hockey. I think it’s the NFL, NBA and NHL’s dirty little secrets.

30 years ago, you didn’t have 265-pound linebackers who could run a 4.5 40. They simply didn’t exist. Now the NFL is full of them. And let’s be honest. As fans we like it. We like seeing those crushing full-speed hits from these athletic freaks. We are as complicit as anyone. Let’s be honest with ourselves.

I’m going to throw out another name. Michael Jordan (sacrilege, I know!). When Jordan entered the league in ’84, he was a beanpole. Later in his career in the late 90s, he had turned into an absolutely huge man; he had gained at least 50 or 60 pounds of muscle mass. He didn’t even look like the same guy. Maybe he bulked up over time, but I’m sorry. I’m suspicious anyone could pack on that kind of muscle mass naturally. I look at LeBron James and I’m sorry, my reaction is, “no way that body of his is natural.”

This is all idle speculation on my part about Jordan, James, Ryan and Fisk. My point is, I believe the doping in all sports — not just baseball, cycling and track — has been pervasive for decades, and we need to wake up about that before we completely condemn McGwire. I’m not condoning McGwire; I’m just pointing out he wasn’t the only one. Should the dopers be in the Hall of Fame? Should their records count? I don’t know. I don’t have a hard and fast answer to that.

I’ve had some heated arguments with people about whether or not steroids are wrong. They have argued, “hey,it’s their bodies, if they want to do steroids, that’s their business.” They point out athletes have taken greenies for decades.

I feel like they don’t get it. For one huge reason. I’ve seen firsthand the damage steroids do. And if I had walked into that pizza joint two minutes earlier, that very well could have been me lying in a pool of my own blood. If you simply allow steroids to run rampant at the professional level, they WILL filter down to the collegiate level, the high school level … and the junior high school level.

Because that college player will have to do steroids to get drafted. The high school player will have to do steroids to get a college scholarship, or the attention of that baseball scout. The junior high school kid will have to do steroids to make the high school team. It’s inevitable. If you allow steroids to run rampant at the professional level, you will NEVER control them at the amateur and underage level (They have a hard enough time controlling it now. You can’t drug test in the summer. You can’t drug test if the kid isn’t playing sports in the spring.), because it will be the only way kids can move up to a higher level. You can argue whether or not blood doping is unethical or not, but steroids? Bad news. Really bad news.

Rather than focusing on punishing people for what they were doing 10 years ago, or focusing the records they set and who was and wasn’t doping (though I’m guilty of doing that in this piece, I know, I was just trying to get people to think.), I think the *real* focus needs to be on cleaning the sports up now and in the future. I believe baseball and cycling honestly take the issue seriously … now … and I think they are slowly cleaning it up. I wish the NFL and NBA would clean up their acts (Four-game suspension for Shawne Merriman for steroids?), because I have seen how the steroids filter downward to younger and younger athletes, and the damage that can be done.

Categories: News & Politics

113 Responses so far.

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  1. Obama20082012 says:

    Thanks for the post Pepe! A friend’s husband has been taking steroids for his colitis and he has been exceptionally mean. This probably explains it. Thank you.

  2. javaz says:

    I meant to ask you, Pepe, what you think about Favre and Warner.
    Aren’t they the oldest QBs in NFL history?

    • PepeLepew says:

      I believe that honour goes to George Blanda.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Blanda

      After him, I think Vinnie Testeverde might have been the second-oldest quarterback.

      • javaz says:

        So then it’s not unusual for 40 year olds to be QBs in the NFL.

        I must say that I would be surprised if Warner doped or did that blood-swapping, because he’s such a religious, right-winger, conservative Republican and he’s proud of it.
        Did you see the article about Warner in Parade Magazine not too long ago?

        Warner does seem to be a genuinely nice guy that puts his money where his mouth his.

        A couple years ago in Phoenix, a family’s home was robbed at Christmastime and all of their gifts under the tree were stolen, along with several other things.

        Warner went out and bought that family of 5 gifts and delivered them personally.

        Plus, it’s a common occurrence in the valley that Warner picks up the tab at restaurants for families when him and his family are out.

        I dislike his political leaning, but he truly does seem like a very nice, and generous man, plus he has a heck of a history and how he made it big in the NFL.

        • PepeLepew says:

          Yeah, Warner’s a hard guy to pin down.

          I’m not wild about athletes who feel the need to wear Jesus on their sleeves, but he walks the walk. I give him that.

          • Obama20082012 says:

            Haven’t you noticed it’s only the QBs, RB’s and receivers that point to God when they make a great play? I never see a DB pointing to God when he’s just crushed a QB in a sack.

  3. Chernynkaya says:

    Kalima-- that fish story! And to think you live in Japan-- the ground zero of raw fish! I used to shop at a local Chinese supermarket here, where they have live fish for sale. I was standing by the counter waiting my turn, and I saw the fishmonger take a live fish out of the tank and start to scale it. I left immediately and will never shop there again. Actually, it is literally against my religion. We are prohibited from any cruelty to animals and from eating anything alive. How barbaric that fishmonger was!

  4. Khirad says:

    LeBron, dittos, I’ve gots mine own questions. As to the it’s their own bodies? Well, if they want to take a tab of acid and try to throw a no-hitter or light up before hitting the snowboard half-pipe, maybe. That’s not the point here. This is with fairness. The only two ways to solve it is ban it for all, or make everyone do it. Given the consequences of roid rage (which I do think exists every much as ball shrinkage), I think we know the obvious answer there.

    By the way, if anyone gets recruited by the Western Washington football team now, you might be being had… 😆

    Bellingham reference. Wow!

  5. Questinia says:

    A picture of Woods. I say bitch tits.

    http://deadspin.com/270954/golfers-getting-huge

  6. Questinia says:

    Ladies, what is natto?

    Natto is fermented soybeans, fermented with a certain bacillus. The beans when mixed with a fork develop a webby mucus which is like thick saliva and it is so stringy you think you didn’t get it all over you, but you did! Like I did today, all in my hair! And then you wonder whether it’s actually GOOD for hair. Then some guy tells you “Sure it’s good, it’s mostly prtotein” And I say “Yeah, I’ve heard THAT one before!”

    • KQuark says:

      I actually know because I use to watch “Iron Chef” before it was Americanized.

    • Kalima says:

      It’s great for hair and fingernails, but I wouldn’t dump it on my head instead of a conditioner, I prefer just to eat it and it’s still great for hair and fingernails, not half as messy or stinky either.

    • Chernynkaya says:

      In Chinese cooking, I believe what you guys are describing is known as Stinky Tofu.

      • Kalima says:

        Well the tofu is made from the same soy beans but actually has no distinct smell.

        • Chernynkaya says:

          Then it can’t be the same, Kalima and Questinia-- this stuff reeks and is actually fermented in fish brine.

          • Khirad says:

            I’m not a big fan of fermented fish related foods… whether East Asian or Scandinavian… I’ll admit that Malay food can do it right though -- still, not a big fan.

            • Kalima says:

              The Thai fish sauce really smells awful, can’t really put into words what it reminds me of, you would have to see my face to understand.

            • Kalima says:

              I have felt like this often in Japan. I am allergic to raw fish and often just the smell has me running to the bathroom but the worst time was many years ago outside of Tokyo having dinner in a typical Japanese country style restaurant.

              Everythingwas going fine, when the owner came over and placed a bowl of water, filled with small fish in see through glass on the table, I remember thinking how sweet to give us something to look at. A few minutes later, 6 people were scooping these tiny fish out of the bowl with their hands, and eating them alive. I gave my hubby a dirty look before I went running to the bathroom, where I stayed, heaving until the meal was over. I never got over that, it looked so barbaric, and I couldn’t kiss my husband on the mouth for a week.

            • Khirad says:

              I can imagine it, if its anything like my face with some of these things. Not just face, but the quivering of the throat, like you’re holding back from spewing at the mere thought of putting it in your mouth.

          • Kalima says:

            Good Lord, I know what you are talking about and no, it’s not the same.

      • Questinia says:

        Oh NO! You mean there’s MORE?

    • Kalima says:

      Hint:

      Always have a box of tissues handy, it gets absolutely everywhere and Q, you should mix it with chopsticks to get the right texture. Forks are for sissies!

      • Questinia says:

        I had the chef mix my natto.

        A lady of my distinction does not “mix” her own natto!

        😆

      • escribacat says:

        Okay. That sounds one hundred percent disgusting!

        • Kalima says:

          Actually it’s really rather good. I’ve eaten it almost every morning for the last 20 years, a great source of protein and it contains some form of natural estrogen too. Japanese women rarely suffer much with the symptoms of menopause if they eat things made from the soya beans, like tofu, natto or soya milk. Worth noting I think.

          • kesmarn says:

            Kalima, I heard there’s no word in Japanese for “hot flash.” Do you know if that’s true?

            Supposedly the phyto-estrogens in tofu prevent them.

            • Kalima says:

              I’m not really sure, I’ll ask around but it is true that eating anything made with the soya bean, prevents most symptoms of the menopause which is great when my time comes, because I won’t be allowed to take HRT as I have two huge fibroid tumors. I’ll just eat more natto, tofu and drink liters of soy milk, hoping for the best.

            • Chernynkaya says:

              Oh, it was bad-- had to stay home for 2 weeks once because I was hemorrhaging (but in denial). But I held on. I’m very glad it’s over. Hang in there if you can!

            • Kalima says:

              I’m looking forward to that shrinkage, I really am. It’s been more than 10 years of hell as I’m sure you know first hand.

              My day will come when I will have one less thing holding me down, I can’t wait for it to start, that might sound odd, but it’s the truth.

            • Chernynkaya says:

              Kalima, I had ginormous fibroids, and had to take tiny amounts of hrt from a patch I cut in half for the flashes. No ill results but saved my sanity and my relationships. I only took it for a little less than a year. The good news is that the fibroids shrink after menopause.

    • Questinia says:

      Oh, and I forgot to mention. It smells like Tiger Woods’ old socks slow cooked in Satan’s anus.

      • Kalima says:

        Hey, how rude! I eat it every morning.

        • Questinia says:

          That’s how one website described it. Like I said I don’t find it smelly at all.

          After all I do eat it myself.
          Sorry!

        • escribacat says:

          What does it taste like? Better than it sounds I hope. I remember having a breakfast in Japan of a raw egg over cold rice. It was a bit early in the morning to deal with it.

          • Kalima says:

            😆 One thing I’ve never taken to is raw eggs. Stems from my childhood, when my grandmother was worried that I was far too skinny. She held my nose and poured a mixture of raw eggs and milk into my mouth until the doctor explained to her that I was a very active child who burned off the calories much faster than other kids. That memory has stayed with me and I can’t eat eggs if the whites are runny, even now.

            • Khirad says:

              I can’t even do runny yolks. Also goes back to my childhood. Never took to them. I’m scrambled, all the way.

              Your story reminds me of some crazy folkremedy stories I’ve read about mothers inflicting upon their children in various cultures. Not nearly as bad, though. 😉

              Better eggs and milk than a crazy concoction of dubious medicinal value ground with mortar and pestle in the pantry.

            • Kalima says:

              Runny yolks are fine with me, still have that habit of cutting up the toast for dipping, but eggs whites remind me of runny noses and turn my stomach, always will.

              Sorry, I hope that no one was eating, I beg your pardon.

            • Chernynkaya says:

              BTW Kalima, I don’t know how many pits she got up there but they had to be professionally removed!

              She was the kind of kid, like you, who was a daredevil. She would of course climb trees, but she would also leave the house pre-dawn in her nightgown and run into Main street to see the circus, ride on the running boards of those cars from the thirties, and my favorite story: This was Philidelphia in the late twenties/early thirties. She was walking around her neighborhood and she was 5. She came across a baby carriage in the street ( but right outside an open door) that held two black babies-- which she took home. She hid them in her room, and played with them until they started to cry, and my grandmother was alerted. My mother claimed she had found them, and that no one wanted them. My grandmother took the babies into the street to find a hysterical mother. And she came from a Ukrainian family-- is that near Estonia? My geography is weak!

            • Kalima says:

              Took them home to play with, that is so funny but could have been so much more. I brought home stray dogs and kittens, the kittens I was usually allowed to keep but we already had four German Shepherds, so the dogs I had to return to the place that I had found them and usually they turned out not to be strays.

              I adored my grandparents, my memories with them were the happiest in my life and I miss her wisdom every day.

              Estonia borders Russia and Latvia, my father left when I was 2, after that there was never much talk about him.

            • Chernynkaya says:

              When my mother was a skinny kid, her mother did that too! But my grandmother didn’t hand feed her and when her back was turned, my mom would give the raw eggs to her fat little sister. Neither of us could ever eat eggs with ANY uncooked whites-- ugh.

            • Kalima says:

              That is so interesting Cher, maybe it’s my genes from my Estonian birth father, who knows and talking about naughty, I didn’t tell you everything. :)

            • Chernynkaya says:

              Yes, Kalima-- you and my mother had Identical childhoods! Honestly, you could have just been describing her, based on the stories my grandmother told about her. But perhaps she was a bit more naughty.

            • Kalima says:

              😆 how many did she manage?

              I was an invincible tomboy, droves my grandmother to despair sometimes. Climbed trees, fell out of trees, played football instead of playing with dolls. Slid down nearby coal tips on a piece of cardboard, came home black from head to toe. Fell from the top of slides, got stuck in a construction pipe, ripped ribbons out of my hair and bows from my clothes, took off my shoes in the woods and came home without them, the soles of my feet embedded with glass. I wasn’t really naughty, just very active.

              The tomboy phase lasted until I was about 15, but it’s still inside me somewhere, even today.

            • Chernynkaya says:

              Kalima-- hilarious!! You again remind me of my mother-- you must be kindred spirits, although of course you are decades younger. She was once taken to the doctor after she tried to see how many cherry pits she could jam up her nose.

            • Kalima says:

              I lived with my grandparents until I was 7. She told stories about how she would come into my room at night to see if I was sleeping or had kicked the covers off and one day found that my cheeks were very swollen. She called my grandfather and when she tried to put the thermometer into my mouth, a boiled egg popped out, I hadn’t chewed it, was thinking of throwing it out of the window, but fell asleep.

              After that, someone always checked inside my mouth before I was allowed to go to sleep.

          • Questinia says:

            Like firm little beans in a tacky web of, well, I’ll let Kalima finish the description!

            • Kalima says:

              With a tacky web of something resembling snot?

            • Kalima says:

              Well my strong anti-inflammatory/ painkiller medication has a very large “DON’T EAT ME” on the bag, in bold red letters.

            • Questinia says:

              You mean to tell me there are medications that speak?

            • Kalima says:

              It must be your medication speaking, no fairy spider webs in my natto this morning, even if I squinted a bit.

            • Questinia says:

              No, not snot!

              The webs of fairy spiders woven amidst the apple orchard blossoms in May.

  7. kesmarn says:

    Pepe, didn’t you have your hockey skates on this morning? Surely you didn’t venture out on the ice flat-footed?

    Seriously, that does sound painful! As with many injuries, I’m suspecting you’re feeling this one more and more as the day wears on. (I once broke my arm skating and got up, switched from skates to regular shoes, drove home and was gabbing with family for a while when I realized my arm was aching and I had trouble raising it to head level. Drove myself to the hospital, got x-rayed, got a half-cast/ace bandage, and drove back home. Later that night, reality struck with a vengeance. Owie.) Ice and Vicodin for you this evening, Pepe! (Make sure the ice is on your clavicles and not in your scotch, though! No scotch and Vicodin combos…you might invent something wilder than ‘roid rage.)

    An amazingly well written story. You really excel when you tell about your own life experiences and/or sports. I just wish these athletes could grasp what they’re doing to themselves with these drugs. They are anything BUT benign.

    • PepeLepew says:

      Absolutely, I fell when I was on my way to pick up my daughter from hockey practise and take her to school, and it didn’t feel that bad, but around noon, it really started bothering me and I seriously started wondering if maybe I had separated one or both of my shoulders. The doctor said it’s possible I may have a partial separation my left shoulder (though I fell on my right — weird), but they will have to take an MRI Friday to be sure.

      I’ve had so many MRIs, I’m surprised I don’t glow in the dark!

      EDIT: Can you tell I’m ambidextrous? I can’t tell left from right!

      • kesmarn says:

        I envy you your ambidexterity!

        I also hope you haven’t separated your shoulder, Pepe!
        Shoulder injuries are miserable. So hard to sleep with shoulder/arm injuries, unless you’re one of those lucky people who lie very still on their backs all night.

        I’m amazed you could drive after a fall like that! And type and think, too…!

        Hope you can get some good rest tonight and feel better in the morning.

  8. Questinia says:

    Who thinks Tiger Woods has been on steroids? Cause he went from geeky to ripped in a roid way.

    I dated an athlete who I found out was on test. His biceps would tear.

    • Kalima says:

      Well he was very young when he started and I’m sure he works out at the gym for the upper body strength golfers need for their swing, it doesn’t have to be about steroids. Hubby plays golf and works out at the gym almost every night, his muscles are very toned and I know for a fact that he’s not on steroids.

      • Questinia says:

        But there’s a particular way a guy looks on steroids. He looks thick.
        Woods has a musculature that doesn’t seem possible on his frame without the aid of steroids.

        • Kalima says:

          I’m not so sure, he is 34 now isn’t he and the baseball players on steroid all look like huge bulls from the thickness of their necks down, he doesn’t have that. Maybe his wife was a great cook, men do tend to put on weight after they are married.

          • PepeLepew says:

            I’m suspicious of Tiger.

            He has bulked up over the years … a lot … and it’s all muscle.

            • Kalima says:

              I know but you can get that from working out like my hubby does, but I won’t place a bet with you because I never would have expected to hear that he poked around either.

    • nellie says:

      Oh no — as if Tiger didn’t have enough scandal. I hadn’t even considered that.

      • Questinia says:

        It may explain his “proclivities”.

        • Kalima says:

          Never did anything for me along those lines. :)

          • Questinia says:

            You should have asked for the “good stuff”.
            I met a woman who took testosterone to improve athletic ability. She went through a second puberty… male.

            • escribacat says:

              LOL. That sounds scary.

            • Kalima says:

              I wouldn’t look so cute with a moustache, what would the neighbours think?

            • Kalima says:

              Escribacat, it’s fermented soy beans.

            • Kalima says:

              I’m too busy eating to think about whether it looks like sex or not.

              😳 just got your meaning, you are a bad girl. Yes it does!

            • escribacat says:

              Ladies, what is natto?

            • Kalima says:

              If you wanted it extra stinky, don’t add the soy sauce and mustard, then again it would taste like nothing on earth. I hope that you really mix it well and it should be poured over fresh, white rice. Oh, and add a few snips of chives before you mix it.

            • Questinia says:

              When you think about it, doesn’t natto look a little like sex?

              I know, I’ll ikageni shiro myself…

            • Questinia says:

              I had mine today too. I told the chef to do it up and make it extra stinky!

              Not so stinky… but I did get some natto in my hair!

            • Kalima says:

              😆 I just finished mine about an hour ago actually, and a girl can never have TOO much natto. :)

            • Questinia says:

              You ate too much natto!

    • PepeLepew says:

      I believe he probably has done them.

      T’aint believable to hit a golf ball 350 yards over and over without effing up your back.

  9. KQuark says:

    Pepe what an incredible story and I really appreciate the way you intertwined you story into the use of steroids in sports.

    I was an avid baseball fan until the strike year and never went back. I just smelled a rat. We must also talk about how MLB enabled the use of steroids for so long. After the strike they lost some fans for good like me but many fans did come back. The reason why was obvious. All of a sudden everyone was bashing HRs. Lenny Dykstra is the best example of a player that had warning track power but all of a sudden was destroying the ball.

    In my opinion MJ did not use steroids or not appreciably. I’ve seen many players just develop like him that started out bean polls but filled out later in their careers. I think you may be picking on basketball players a little because for one thing unlike football players changes in their bodies are far more noticeable. Another huge factor with basket ball players is they as a group start playing big league pro ball at the youngest age. If you are a great college basketball player you are likely to enter the pros as a Freshman whereas in the NFL a college player really needs to be a Jr. or Sr. to compete.

    Roid rage is real and I know because I’ve experienced a significant change in moods when I had to take a massive amount of a steroid called prednisone during chemotherapy. Prednisone is used in small dosages to treat many chronic diseases especially autoimmune diseases but I was taking like 20-25 times the daily dosage as an anti-tumor drug. It’s not even an anabolic steroid but my mood was definitely much edgier and not just because I was fighting cancer. I actually had to take one of the mood leveling drugs to fight this side effect.

    • PepeLepew says:

      I’m purely speculating about Jordan, and believe me, I’m not the only one, but if you look at photos of him when he was 21 or 22 and photos of him when he is 34 or 35, I swear the shape of his head changed. That is the most suspicious thing. All the weightlifting in the world doesn’t change the shape of your head from 22 to 35.

      • KQuark says:

        I’m not even a big MJ fan but I do give him the benefit of the doubt in this case.

        Maybe the shape of his head changed after wearing a baseball cap for two years in the minors. 😛

  10. escribacat says:

    Taking steroids is cheating! Having said that I’ve been on prednisone for my back. I gather it’s a different kind of steroid but I can say it made me NUTS. This was a five day course of prednisone. I remember being at the grocery store and standing in line with my cart and sensing the person behind me and feeling like their cart was just getting a l i t t l e bit too close to me and thinking about what I was going to do if their effing cart t o u c h e d me.

    Luckily for all, the cart never touched me and I went home and realized I was not fit for human consumption and I hid in my house for the rest of the prednisone course.

    • kesmarn says:

      e’cat, your description of your prednisone experience is a riot. We give steroids out by the boatload at the hospital--mostly for controlling asthma and other respiratory problems and sometimes to reduced post op edema and inflammation. They can definitely affect moods. Some people get super-euphoric on them, too. And many people have no psych reaction at all to them. We give a lot of IV Solu-Medrol, which is a great drug when properly used, but--long term--can cause ulcers, bone-thinning, fluid retention, elevated blood sugars and elevated white blood cell counts. For medical emergency use only! These athletes are playing with fire.

    • Khirad says:

      That was funny. How close are steroids to meth? 😆 I was on them for like mono or something for a week or two, can’t remember. I didn’t notice anything really different. Then again, I was a teen at the time with raging hormones…

      • PepeLepew says:

        I *do* know that chemically, meth is not that different from coke. That surprised me!

        • Khirad says:

          I knew it was very similar to adrenaline. The cocaine thing is a bit odd and fun to know, but not extremely shocking, come to think of it. I’m not exactly an expert on meth, but maybe the war scientists who synthesized it based it off coke? Wow, I should have totally done some google before throwin’ that out there. But hey, no parachute!

          • escribacat says:

            Meth must be a lot more powerful than cocaine — based on a comparison between my own experiences with the latter with my nephew’s psychotic break after doing too much of the former.

    • Kalima says:

      I was on steroids for over 20 years after each draining of my knees. They were supposed to keep me pain free for at least a month but it only lasted 3 days. The only thing they ever did for me was give me a “moon face” after 4 years of use and in the next 16 years, I gained 7 kilos. I practically had to arm wrestle my doctor when I said that I wanted to stop. The extra weight has been falling off and I’m back to my normal weight again since I stopped three years ago. It’s been a long struggle but I consider myself lucky, there are many people who go through life wearing those extra kilos and if like me they suffer with chronic RA, the extra weight stresses the already inflamed joints to breaking point. Happy to be steroid free!

    • KQuark says:

      Every baseball stat during the roid era should have an asterisk next to it at least and if MLB had any guts the players that admit they cheated should have their records and awards stripped.

  11. nellie says:

    Pepe, you are one hell of a writer. What a story.

    My feeling about steroids is that it just messes up my joy for any sport at all. I used to be a huge baseball fan in the 70s and early 80s. But not any more. I think of the way horses are doped up for races, and I just don’t know why a human being would want to treat himself that way. Money really distorts everything.

  12. PepeLepew says:

    Speaking of physical damage. I just got back from the emergency room. I have not one, but TWO jammed collarbones from my fall on the ice this morning.

    Woo, hoo. Yummy, yummy, yummy, I got vicodin in my tummy! 😆

  13. bitohistory says:

    My small experience with “roid rage” was with a county sheriffs department. My ex was the office manger for a district of the public defenders office. She ran the business side, the public defender ran the legal side.
    It was not uncommon for a deputy to have to come to the office for something.
    One day this deputy got caught with ‘roids in his locker and he said something about “evidence he forgot to check in…yada, yada…” He got off with a reprimand. A few weeks later they held the annual charity softball game between the sheriff deputies and Assit. PD’s. Gawd, some of these deputies had bulked up from last year! Some started foolish arguments over a friendly charity game!! During the next month they would come into the PD office yell at the lawyers, throw chairs! WTF!
    Finally this one came in, he was about 5’5″ with arms of weight lifter, and picked an Assistant PD up by the throat and pinned him to the wall.
    The PD office ended banning about a dozen deputies. There was an investigation, the ring was broken up, a couple deputies quit and the rest was hushed up.
    These guys were supposed to be fighting the illegal use of them and ended up doing them. It was weird and scarred the hell out of my ex and all the women in the office.

  14. javaz says:

    I’ve never read that roid-rage was a myth, but will research it.

    Do you remember Chris Bonoit, the WWE wrestler that killed his wife, their 7 year old son and then hung himself?

    There was and probably still is speculation about the murders/suicide, since the man did have problems, but at the time of his death, he had been on testosterone replacement therapy.
    TRT is a common treatment for people who had used steroids in the past and suffered testicular damage.

    Autopsy reports of his brain were released and reported that Benoit’s brain had been severely damaged from multiple concussions and resembled that of an 85 year old Alzheimer patient.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chris_Benoit_double_murder_and_suicide

    “Chris Benoit Had Steroids, Other Drugs In His System At Time Of Murder-Suicide”

    http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1564953/20070717/index.jhtml

    Due to the alleged abuse of steroids by Benoit, the WWE is under investigation and just this month, Henry Waxman requested that the Office of National Drug Control Policy chief, John P. Walters, “examine steroid use in professional wrestling and take appropriate steps to address this problem.”

    • PepeLepew says:

      Oh, the people who told me it was a myth were people supporting the use of steroids!

      Yes, I’ve heard of the Chris Benoit incident.


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