Stumpin’ For Steroids

Who are we kidding, anyway? Our society is so pumped up with chemicals and additives that if we were to give up our enhancers, extenders, preservatives, diuretics, analgesics, lubricants, antihypertensives, and antidepressants,we would quickly expire, and the Lord would have to start all over with a fresh new slate, an earthly tableau rosa, if you will.

Meanwhile, in view of our unyielding demand for counterfeit chemical experience, I suggest that we resolve the steroid issue once and for all by making human growth hormones mandatory. The likelihood that a growing number of athletes would take on the appearance of distorted, over-bloated comic strip-like creatures should be of little concern in a culture that increasingly sports a plethora of major media, based on such hyperbole.

But I would take this resolution one step further. I suggest that in view of the ubiquitous, unrelenting bombardment of broadcast sports into our daily lives, the public should be fortified with this anabolic energy to participate in the spectacle, as well. Dosage levels could start modestly, and as one became more zealous in support for any given athlete or team, the levels could be correspondingly stepped up.

Consider that, despite our feeble and mostly nominal attempts to “give the other guy a break,” we are in no uncertain terms a competitive, if not overtly savage species. Being ‘one-up’ on anyone from the tax collector to the next door neighbor is all part of the human proclivity. So why not give everyone a leg up on it all? And why confine this percolating propensity of spirit to the arena or playing field? Let’s ‘bring it on!’ And what better way to kick the whole havoc into gear than by administering muscle enhancement therapy at as early an age as possible.

Youngsters could be reminded by their parents before they leave for school to take their dose of ‘the cream,’ ‘the clear’ or whatever is in vogue at the time. Mom might say: "Now Johnny, you wouldn’t want ‘Billy Beefcake’ to think you were an easy mark, would you?" Think of the advantages of such a program. Instead of simply observing the action, fans with their newly acquired foreboding physiques could make melee in the stands a part of the game! Why spend an entire afternoon gawking at Barry and the boys when you can butt overgrown body parts with the folks in the next row or section, and really experience the visceral joys of free-physical enterprise?

Instead of athletes surreptitiously injecting each other behind the gilded walls of their bathroom stalls, there could be a less clandestine approach. Opposing teams could actually visit each others’ clubhouses, syringes and all in hand, offering to facilitate the process for each other! After all, ballplayers of all breeds have exhibited a pronounced propensity for butt slapping (as much as butt-kicking). Why not augment the ritual with the stuff of champions? Fans also could get into the act, injecting each other between innings, periods or rounds, rendering a new sense of sportsmanship and camaraderie to counterpoint the innate antagonisms of modern gamesmanship.

Politicians could shed their carefully manipulated games and guises by getting right to the gist of the matter. A compulsory ritual at the beginning of each debate involving the ingestion of the performance enhancing substance of choice would make for a more honest and dynamic contest. Rather than the usual jabs, jive and pectoral strutting about, candidates could partake in arm wrestling, kick boxing, and other instinctive expressions of their obsession with power. The last one left yakking would win the nomination.

Finally, there is also evidence that consistent use of these ‘wonder drugs’ leads, ironically, to the diminution of certain vital sex organs. But this should be no cause for alarm, as the phenomenon of diminishing fertility can only facilitate the dissolution of the species as we now know it. When all is said and done, it is becoming perfectly clear that we are moving most expeditiously in that direction, anyway.

~Marc Twang


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