Velogal's Blog

Monday, December 12, 2005


The photo is my Editor-In-Chief, who keeps a watchful eye on me while I’m working on my computer. Her name is Baby, and she had some concerns about the Sloggi thong photo in my last blog... You may or may not agree with her about whether it was in “good taste” or not...

Here is the Monday morning Lance Armstrong Radio Sirius Faction report. Higgs said that Lance was in San Francisco last Wednesday to be the keynote speaker for a meeting of the World’s Top 50 CMOs. Before the address, he was interviewed by sports journalist Roy Firestone. The Sunday nite show was based on parts of that interview. (I’ll give you what I remember of the interview - it’s not word-for-word quotations from the interview tape. And again, there were some pretty time-worn questions (TWQ) and Roy, or his staff, hadn’t done their homework very well...)

RF: Asked if Lance will come back for Number 8 TWQ- Said how can you not, being as competitive as you have been all your life, even as a kid? How do you not live a life of competition now?
LA: Said he was happy to stop, mainly because of his kids and spending time with them. Will not ever live in France again - riding the Tour again would just result in the same drama.
RF: Asked what bothers Lance most about the innuendos and accusations. Said that there was even an article that Lance’s cancer was a fraud, and done so that Lance could use drugs to come back and win the Tour.
LA: Said he knows differently, he’s lived the cancer. Said that if you looked at it objectively, the modern sport of cycling had just gone through the 1998 doping crisis, and then along comes Lance and wins, and wins again - seven times. And he didn’t pander to the European journalists - when they said something, he called them on it.
RF: Who was it specifically: French, Spanish, Italian journalists or who?
LA: Said it was the French journalists. Said to look at it like what if the French came over and won our World Series seven times... wouldn’t the American journalist have a lot to say about that!
RF: Asked which of Lance’s wins was he proudest of? TWQ
LA: Most proud of the first and the last wins. First for obvious reasons, last because he wanted to go out on top. It was a perfect ending with his kids there, his friends and family, Sheryl, his Mom: all there for him...
RF: Read a quote from Robin Williams wherein he said that Lance had kicked him in the heart... Asked Lance what that meant.
LA: Said that Robin is brilliant, intelligent and well-read. Whatever his kids or anyone is reading, Robin will read it too, know about it and base his humor on it...
RF: Quoted the book about Lance choosing cancer of the Tour de France win. TWQ
LA: Cancer changes your perspective on life forever. Cancer made him win the Tour.
RF: You are depicted as a courageous man. Were you a frightened man?
LA: The word courage is a serious word. Everyone who battles cancer is courageous - whether it’s an 80 year old grandmother battling lung cancer or me. The key is to stay predominantly positive.
RF: Read that when you were looking at results with Dr. Shapiro, and when you discussed your HGC numbers, he said that 60-70 was high and yours was a little high. You said mine is 187, but what does “k” mean? Dr Shapiro said thousand, and your count is 187,000.
LA: Yeah! I was either very sick or very pregnant. At that point, I’d rather be pregnant... (Laughter)
RF: Did you do much laughing during your treatment?
LA: Laughter is important - with a positive attitude, people do better in anything.
RF: How much crying did you do?
LA: Not much - there were times, though.
RF: How much throwing up?
LA: A lot more throwing up than crying...
RF: Said that everywhere you look there are people battling cancer who are uninsured. You were uninsured, but Nike was a hero - the company who stepped in and said either insure Lance or we pull out, and got insurance for you.
LA: Nope, it was Oakley who did that. Both Oakley and Nike were heroes for me at that time.
RF: Think about all the people who don’t have that clout.
LA: It happens all the time - cancer is incredibly expensive and incredibly hard.
RF: How many lives do you think are lost because of that?
LA: Don’t know, but it is the poorest of the poor who are lost. That has to change... Health care in America has to change.
RF: The LiveStrong band. What do you call it? Band , bracelet, what?
LA: Just call it the Yellow Band.
RF: Whose idea was it? Yours? TWQ
LA: Laughing - Yeah, mine....all mine...
RF; How many have been sold? I read 11 million? TWQ - And so wrong...
LA: No 59 or 60 million now. And they cost ten cents to buy. The guys at Nike came up with the idea, they called them “ballers” (Laughter). Nike proposed making five million and if they didn’t sell, they would donate the $5 million to the LAF. The Tour happened and the Olympics, and all athletes wore the LiveStrong band, no matter where they were from, no matter what race or religion. It was great.
RF: Are you a Hero?
LA: Uhhh.. don’t know... probably not. You can’t call yourself a hero, if you do, you’ll probably fail.
RF: But you are a symbol...
LA: I try to be a good example of living strong, living my life doing what is right. I can’t say I’m a hero, that’s for somebody else to say. It would be nice..
RF: What’s the stronger power in the Universe - Fear or Love?
LA: Boy - that varies on a person’s Universe.... As an athlete, probably Fear motivated me. I was worried that I would let down my fans and sponsors. (About the cancer) Still worried - But I didn’t worry today. I respect that illness like no other - it is a total and complete Bastard - I never turn my back on it.
RF: You’ve had an unbelievable life. Your mother is most important - she was married three times. When you divorced, did you feel the pattern was continuing? Was it difficult for you?
LA: Divorce for me was a disappointment, a failure - you don’t enter into a marriage to get divorced. Fifty percent of Americans get divorced, but divorce doesn’t mean you are a failure or a bad person. It means that you didn’t line up with your soulmate. It doesn’t mean that you never should have loved. If I had my choice, I’d rather have been married for fifty years.
RF: Do you think people were disappointed in you?
LA: Oh yeah...divorce is definitely looked down on in this country, as common as it is. People were disappointed, but you have to live your life for yourself and not for them. Do what’s right for yourself, for your wife/ex-wife and especially for the children. Sometimes that requires hard decisions.
RF: Reads the Lance quote about wanting to die while descending at 80 miles an hour with the Lone Star on his helmet, etc etc. How close is that fantasy of perfection to your realization of life now?
LA: Well, I don’t think I will be descending a mountain when I’m a hundred years old.. doubt that I will even be alive. Can’t complain - I’m 34 years old, and have health, happiness, three kids, financial security, and unbelievable friends and support in the cancer community. I think I can really make a difference - if you can step in and change the course of history when it comes to cancer, that’s a big victory.
RF: And grasp life for what it is....
LA: Every Day....

The interview ended and Higgs said that they had been traveling. Were in LA where Lance did a cameo in a movie starring Kate Hudson, Owen Wilson, Matt Dillon and Michael Douglas. Gave a speech in Seattle for a Prostate Cancer Awareness Group of 1,100 people. Best speech of his life, according to Higgs.

3 Comments:

  • Nice photo and beautiful cat. I love cats. :)

    By Blogger Ania G, At 10:29 AM  

  • Your Baby is as gorgeous as my Sherpa!

    Ann

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 11:14 AM  

  • Thanks. I had missed that broadcast--one of only two I've missed!! But I knew I could count on you to fill me in.
    Glad your cute cat keeps you company.

    By Anonymous Amy, At 1:59 PM  

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