I would like to think we live in a pretty black-and-white world. I know that it isn’t, but I sleep better thinking that it is.

I would like to think we live in a pretty black-and-white world. I know that it isn’t, but I sleep better thinking that it is.


Deep down, there are some folks that benefit from being deceptive. Hard work is not the key to success for some – the answer can be found in a pill or a shot (mostly athletes for this one).


And gosh darn it, sometimes singers lip sync.


(Now picture me standing up and shaking my fists in the air and yelling) What have we become!


Lance Armstrong


Anyone who thinks that athletes – especially endurance athletes – haven’t been looking for any kind of an edge for years is just foolish.


I recall hearing about distance runners who would donate blood, then right before a race, give themselves a transfusion to help the muscles get oxygen better back when I was a teen.


Several members of the 1984 U.S. Olympic cycling team admitted to receiving transfusions (from other people if you can believe it) before competing and winning nine medals. A very risky procedure considering how AIDS was just in its infancy.


But hey, a medal is a medal and that sort of thing wasn’t officially frowned upon for nearly two more years.


Am I shocked that Armstrong admitted to enhancing his performance? Not in the slightest.


Heck, he and the other cyclists had to cover 2,000 miles over a 21-day span. Something like that is begging to be a part of a 5-hour energy commercial.


If you ask every winner what their “real” secret was, I bet you’d get some surprising answers (provided they were honest). Hey Oprah, I’ve got a follow-up special for you to begin working on.


It’s my opinion that the last clean bike race ever run was the Little 500 shown in the 1979 movie “Breaking Away.”


Oh those Cutters.


Steroid era


The fact that sports writers are keeping Major League Baseball players like Mark McGwire out of the Hall of Fame because of their links to steroids is very “Holier than thou,” in my opinion.


As I recall, even if McGwire used androstenedione, it wasn’t deemed to be illegal by baseball at the time.


I have never been injured enough to have required surgery or extensive rehabilitation, but I hear that many folks in those situations are prescribed steroids in order to help them heal faster.


Regardless, I am confident that many big leaguers have resorted to pharmaceuticals in order to give themselves an edge or to just keep them going a few more seasons for many years.


Is it a reason to keep my generations greatest baseball players out of the Hall of Fame? Apparently.


But in reality, how can you be absolutely sure of what went on without accurate testing? Do you really want to trust folks like Jose Canseco? I know I don’t.


Until a McGwire, a Clemens, or a Bonds reaches the Hall of Fame, my generation will be held hostage by guys that make their living by placing these men on pedestals, but have it in their heads that they alone are allowed to be judge, jury and Hall of Fame executioner.


God, I hate sportswriters.


Lip syncing


Do I believe that Beyoncé lip sync’d the Star Spangled Banner during the President’s inauguration?


Yes.


Do I care?


No.


Do we really need daily updates on what everyone else in the world thinks?


At least she recorded herself (ala Whitney Houston before Super Bowl XXV) and didn’t go Milli Vanilli on us.


There is only one opinion that I would pay money to hear on this subject -- Frank Sinatra. I’m guessing he’s worn several holes in the suit he was buried in from all of the spinning he’s been doing because of the crap-ola that’s been generated by the music industry since his death in 1998.


Please, just make it stop before I have to watch Beyoncé lip sync her Super Bowl halftime show.


Questionable events


I won’t even try to touch the Manti Te’o craziness that the 24-hour news cycle won’t let go of. Instead, I will take a trip down memory lane to other unbelievable things that happened -- or didn’t.


Ruth’s called shot. If only folks had remembered to bring their cell phones to the 1932 World Series, we wouldn’t have this problem. Instead, men made sure they had their ties, jackets and straw hats so they could watch a baseball game properly. Now we can’t watch a baseball game on television without dealing with the dopes that are on the phone and waving during each pitch.


Ruth’s 714 home runs. Speaking of the Babe, thank God hot dogs and prostitutes weren’t outlawed by baseball or the Great Bambino would have had a very short run in the bigs.


Wilt Chamberlain having relations with more than 20,000 women -- without having any illegitimate children. Will someone get a copy of Wilt’s book to former NFLer Travis Henry (a reported 11 kids with 10 different women).


Dallas Stars winning the Stanley Cup. C’mon, his skate was in the crease for Pete’s sake.


Moon landing. C’mon people. If it was easy enough to be done in the 1960’s, we should have a moon resort up and running by now. A lunar Las Vegas if you will. That had to be fake.


That should about cover things for now. I will now return to my needlepoint and oil painting.


Or will I?


Shawn Vargo, sports editor for The Leader, can be reached at svargo@the-leader.com or follow him on Twitter @TheLeaderVargo.