Saturday, June 22, 2013

Oh, Like You Don't Miss Him Too: The Grimy, Thrilling Pleasure of Jan Ullrich

Look, before I get a ton of crap from, well, both my faithful readers, let me reiterate--*again*--that doping is bad. Really, really bad. It was bad when early-1900s Tour riders were smoking cigarettes to "clear their lungs," it was midcentury bad when guys were popping amphetamines like tic-tacs, it was wicked bad--and deeply disgusting to boot--when boys like Tyler Hamilton and Riccardo Ricco' were whizzing black and damn near exploding their livers with botched transfusions, and it still ain't sporting today. But if you can still say with a pure heart that Jan Ullrich on a bike wasn't the most just plain fun to see on a bike since, well, that unctuous filthy mastermind Alexandre Vinokourov, honey, you are either so noble that a caffeinated energy gel is the food of the devil or you are Pat "Dick" McQuaid on an implausible-deniability post-Lance-sycophant faux-ingratiating total-bull!@#$-artist last-ditch-o'-glory-desperate-UCI-presidency-seeking-shameless-power-whoring-campaignfest. Yes, after breaking years of post-downward-spiral silence--on freakin' Lance's doping, for heck's sake--the gun-shy Jan has finally spoken out on his own. Sure, it's that same cheap level-playing-field just-business-ma'am self-congratulatory rationalization that's egregiously failed everyone else and screwed generations of riders unwilling to put their health or integrity at risk--but let's review Jan on a bike, shall we?

He was erratic. He was uncontrolled. He insisted in grinding away in some ridiculous gear on the most inappropriate terrain because he could. He was a bratwurst-snarfing self-hosing bon vivant in the offseason, padding his gut outta contention til way later in the season than he should've been. He was a killer-instinct in motion without remotely the self-discipline he needed to actually back it up. He was a screeching brakeless train on a half-!@#ed bridge just waiting for a derailment. And he was way, waaaay, waaaaay more entertaining than that damn joyless robot and his perfectly-pharmaceutically-tuned tick-tock domestiques who beat his !@# every year like clockwork.

So what's he doing now, after what must have surely been an agonizing--if hardly sympathetic--Floydian several years watching equally-drugged-up compatriots complete--hell, even evade entirely--some penny-ante wrist-slap ban and return to loving accolades lucrative careers and a completely whitewashed place in history while he almost alone freakishly bore the blame for an entire generation's destruction of his sport? He's teaching little kids cycling, without a single carnival-quack Millaresque self-serving camera-slut wah-wah that's so bizarrely succeeded in rehabbing other guys just as stupid to get caught to save himself. Mr. Ullrich, you were a very bad boy indeed, and there's no justifying how you cheated the good intentions and honest regimens of--hell, certainly *somebody*. And yep, having opened the door on the obvious years after the party's broke up and gone home, it's probably better--and clearly more comfortable--for everyone, except of course the still-wildly-adored-but-more-promptly-shameful dopers that still make a handsome living off of DSing the clean new stars, if you just chill back into obscurity after this. But having so loved it back then, it'd be even more hypocritical to rewrite our own complicit history now. !@#$, Jan, you were fun to watch!

Holy moly, is this a dirty dirty parade of crooks in this clip: Enjoy--even if you won't admit it!


Velocodger said...

Always a fan of Jan. He is a person I like, a human being I would be glad to have a lot of beers and wurst with.

Folders said...

I was always watching his races when I could.
At least he had the courage to come clean.