Wednesday, July 09, 2008
Damn Those French
The Godfather Part III sucked and we all know it. But, it did have one good line: "Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in." For Michael, it was the mob. For me, it's french food and that damn Tour. Much like I can't say no to well-executed steak au-poivre or escargo, I find myself drawn back into the TdF. And I'm not sure why. Just days ago I was discussing with a co-worker the complete disregard the ASO has for their own rules and procedures. Fatty made some great points about how the race this year appeared to be slated for a bore-fest with no prologue, no time-bonuses, no TTT, and fewer mountain stages. Neither of these even address the absence of the defending champion. ASO are even smug about it, much like the narrator in Ratatouille. For these reasons I had planned on not watching any of it. In fact, I hadn't planned on watching the opening stage. Then I found myself at my parents house on a Saturday afternoon with nothing to do. The only thing on was the Tour. When I switched to the Tour, my brother even asked why since I'd voiced my plans to avoid it. I answered because there was nothing else on. And then I saw the sights and heard Paul and Phil. And the next day, a break stayed away and the jersey changed hands. And then . . . .. So now, I'm back watching the Tour. It's pulled me back in. Like the spouse of a prolific philanderer, I'm making myself believe the promises that this time it will be different. This time I can get behind Garmin-Chipotle and Team Columbia because of their anti-doping programs. Big corporate sponsors surely wouldn't get into a troubled sport unless they had assurances that the teams were doing what was necessary to ensure their riders were clean, right? Or at least doing everything they could to keep them out of a scandal. Yep, this time it's going to be different.