We’ve never been fond of Lance Armstrong. It’s not the doping that upsets us. We don’t care about bike rides through the French Alps, and we think men who wear tight spandex shorts in public have other issues. But we thought it was a shanda (the Yiddish word for scandal and disgrace) when he left his wife and young children for singer Sheryl Crow. Then, he dumped Sheryl Crowe because she “was pressuring him to have children.” Then he had two kids with his new partner, Anna Hansen.
What a no-goodnik! Thank goodness he’s not a member of the Tribe. We don’t have to cut off our yellow rubber Livestrong bracelets because we never wore them. What are we — seventh graders following the latest fad?
Now Lance is trying to redeem himself and resuscitate his career. We imagine it’s tough to make a living when they ask you to return your Olympic bronze medal and strip you of your seven Tour de France victories. He is crying and admitting his misdeeds to Oprah, Queen of All TV Confessions, who was grateful to have a sure-fire guest to perk up her ratings and rescue her network.
Lance went for a celebrity confession, not a real one. We didn’t hear about him seeking out a Catholic priest who could offer him absolution. So we went online to www.absolution-online.com and typed in “lying under oath” and found out that he needs to recite 1170 Hail Marys, 55 Our Fathers, confess to the authorities, and fast for a total of 8 weeks (although he’s allowed to break the fasting down into smaller sections).
We didn’t see him on Yom Kippur tapping his chest. He didn’t participate in the Great 88 Buddhas Repentance Ceremony. All of this lack of remorse may affect his karma, a concept of reincarnation that says that after you die you come back in a new body – human or animal – depending on the moral quality of your actions in your life. Guess who’s coming back as a bug that gets squished by bicycle?
Lance is the latest in a line of celebrities who have done something shameful and tried to rehabilitate their image through the media. We don’t want to name names – but we can’t resist. Tiger Woods, we’re giving you the stink eye. Remember Mark Sanford, the disgraced former South Carolina governor who concocted an elaborate story about hiking the Appalachian Trail to cover up his secret love affair with an Argentinean TV reporter? This week he’s announced that he’s back, he’s better, and he’s running for Congress. We are sure he’s a completely changed man. And we won’t go into all the celebs who have issued “Sex Tape Apologies” or white-collar criminals’ “Sorry I Stole My Friends/Associates/Charity Money” confessions.
If you are a celebrity, you have the media to redeem you, to broadcast your apologies. You can call a press conference and look contrite. But what about us regular folks? When the high school English teacher is accused of an inappropriate relationship, how does she rehabilitate her reputation? What about the neighbor who is arrested for tax evasion? When he walks the dog, people cross to the other side of the street. Maybe they should make a YouTube video apology. Maybe it’ll go viral and Oprah will invite them to her couch. Then they’ll be famous.
We haven’t done very much lately that demands a public apology, although we never told the waitress that she forgot to put the apple pie on the bill. And we were driving 75 in a 65 mph zone. But we don’t want Oprah to call. We’ll save our confessions for next Yom Kippur.