You know, before I knew you, I made fun of your name. “He sure LOOKS like a Floy-duh!” But then I watched you tear it UP. I read that article about you that also included my One True Cycling Love, Dave Zabriskie. And I liked you, a whole lot. My heart broke for you the day you sorta died. But then, that amazing comeback! Say it isn’t so, Floyd. Tell me you didn’t take something that would give you an illegal leg up, even though that leg needs a new hip. If it’s true, if you were doing The Bad Thing, tell me how. When you knew full well you’d be tested, how could you do such a thing? You’re obviously no dumb-ass, but that’s a reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeal dumb-ass thing to do, Floyd.
Sweet Sweet Lover Man says that the pressure on cyclists is IMMENSE, that the sponsors pay upwards of $250k to get their names on your jersey and the riders had better deliver. Therein lies the real crime. Do those people not watch Oprah? Did they not watch yesterday when Anderson Cooper was talking about his trips to Sudan and Rwanda? Did they not see those tiny, hopelessly malnourished babies who are dying? And the sponsors spend $250k for a fucking shirt? Pardon my language, Floyd. You can tell I’m rather incensed, can’t you? Professional sports, man. It’s not about athleticism anymore. It’s not about the unity of the physical and mental self. It’s about the sponsors. You can argue that no, it’s the love of sport. But if that’s so, why do sports teams play in arenas that are named not after great athletes, but after credit card companies? Or The Staples Center. Bank One Ballpark. Oh wait, that’s now Chase Field. It’s ridiculous. And you, Floyd. Jimmy and I told Nolan he has the perfect build to be a pro cyclist. “Look at that guy go! Look at Floyd!” “Yeah, Mama! I can ride like him!” This is an edit now. My young son, I sure hope so. I didn’t make you and Chloe sit through the Oprah show on meth tweakers for nothin’. And if Floyd’s Mama was ok with TV, she would have, too. (Ok, I don’t know if Menonites watch TV or not, so that was blatant religious ignorance. But I fess up to it.)
Floyd, man, I don’t know what’s going on. I guess we’ll find out, and as we all wait, I’m still a fan. You’re an amazing athlete and I recognize that.
Edit again- Here’s what a dork I am: I googled Robbie Ventura (Floyd’s coach) to get to his coaching website. Lo and behold, there was an email address. So I emailed Vision Quest to tell them how sad this is and how Floyd has my support and best wishes. I got a lovely response from Dave Noda at VQ, which was very nice. Oh Floyd. One of the knittyheads said it best- this just shows that you’re even MORE of a man!