by Ryan Meehan
So Alex Rodriguez will be suspended from baseball for the remainder of this season and all of next season for his role in the Biogenesis scandal, as well as lying to investigators regarding him involvement. By now, as sportswriters we’re all so sick of talking about steroids that we’d all rather jam a thermometer down our dickhole and then break it before we wrote another juicing piece. (Plus, Mercury is not on the banned substances list) I’m not here today to discuss steroids. Fuck that.
What I’d like to talk about here is this crazy idea the media and your idiot co-workers have when it comes to the standards we expect athletes to adhere to in this country. The argument is so predictable I feel like I’m talking to a first grader. Sure, professional athletes should be held to the same standards when it comes to following the rules, but let me ask you this:
When have things ever been the way they should be?
The answer is rarely. That’s because the perception and reality are so far apart when it comes to this topic. They’re exact polar opposites in these situations.
Perception: Athletes should be held to the same moral standards (or higher) when it comes to following the rules and mores of society.
Reality: Yeah, right.
The methods of thinking that would lead a person to really believe that are usually developed by 1) media blowhards like Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless; and 2) people that don’t have millions of dollars and have no clue how they would act in that situation. While the douchebags in that first category are unavoidable because they are seemingly at every turn unless you only get your sports news online, the second group of people piss me off way more. The reason for that is because they DON’T know what they would do in that situation, and they’ll never need to. Example forthcoming.
Let’s just say for example that although he is not even a fan of ANY AL East team, the guy in the cubicle across from you hates the Yankees and everything they do. When the news that A-Rod was a sitting duck came across the wire, he was the first one to run around telling people that Alex will get whatever punishment he ends up getting. Likewise, that same guy will also tell you that if he was in A-Rod’s place he would have never used steroids, even though nobody asked him. But how can we know that if faced with a serious injury and immense pressure from the New York media to perform better in the playoffs that random nobody with an opinion wouldn’t boot some HGH? The answer is, we never WILL know because that guy will never play for the Yankees OR find himself as the focal point of such a scenario. And that’s because he’s going to be showing up at that shitty job from Monday to Friday for the next twelve years, before he is asked to work on a Saturday and then gets clobbered by a bus going to work because he’s hungover and not paying attention.
I also love how the second any of these athletes get caught using performance enhancing drugs, everybody around the water cooler starts acting all high and mighty like we’ve never so much as urinated in public. I’ve done a ton of horrible shit in my life, so when a guy gets “busted” using a homophobic or racial slur I just laugh my ass off thinking about how I’m not sitting in a prison cell about to toss a large man’s salad shooter. We’ve all done things in our lives that we’re not proud of, and doesn’t anybody remember that line from the Bible “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”? (If you don’t, trust me…it’s in there. It’s right after the part about the right to bear arms and how gay porn shouldn’t be so expensive)
Now, some of this may come off as me defending athletes and their poor behavior. This couldn’t be further from the case. What I’m talking about here is the notion that we actually believe this is going to change. We think that with all of the other injustices to be righted in this world, that all of a sudden something like baseball is going to do a complete one eighty and clean house. It’s fucking maniacal.
Alex Rodriguez probably waters his plants with his sprayer set on “mist”, and a lot of these guys aren’t nearly as hardcore as you might think. He didn’t kill anybody, and if he should be suspended for anything it’s the fact that he is one of the most boring, lifeless sports personalities in the history of the world. Whether you want to admit it or not, Alex Rodriguez makes Bill Belichick look like Robin Williams.
So before you go after a guy like this, remember that he’s not the biggest dude in the boneyard. A lot of guys like Alex Rodriguez will come and go in the many centuries that lay ahead. They will make hundreds of millions of dollars and not live up to expectations. And legions of fans everywhere will verbally assault them when they are finally caught making a mistake. And those same people will then do cocaine and methamphetamines, beat their wives and abuse their children. They will continue to do so whilst saying such things because perception is never reality and the difference between being above the law and thinking that you are above the law is no exception.