It's been quiet a week with revelations about 80's legend Jimmy Saville and noughties legend Lance Armstrong. Both unsavoury for different reasons, although Saville's appear particularly heinious and gross. As each new revelation hits we all say I can't believe it's true, they were such heroes and legends.
I remember watching the George Hincapie dvd a couple of years ago, and he was asked who his heroes in the sport were. His reply was something along the lines of "I've been around this sport for so long I no longer have any heroes", at the time I and I guess many others watching it, expected him to say Lance Armstrong for his seemingly miraculous journey from near death to 7 Tour victories, but he didn't. As I dwelt on his reply in the months that followed it planted a doubt in my mind about Armstrong, Hincapie and the whole wave of American cycling success. If Hincapie, Armstrong's close friend and as the press dubbed him "trusted lieutenant" didn't see him as a hero, then surely he knew what many suspected, that he, them and most probably most of the peloton were doped up to the eyeballs. It now looks that, that may well be the case.
I think the lesson to be learnt from this, is this; people who become our heroes tend to excel at something that we admire, but, we expect all areas of their lives to follow their specific area of excellence. It's made me think that we shouldn't have heroes, we are all fallable, and putting people on a pedestal will only lead to false hopes or expectations. We hero worship, because we like to think that perfection is attainable for all, but it's an illusion, a trick, no one is perfect, least of all our "heroes".
We should enjoy life, endevour to be the best we can, in all we do, laugh often and show compassion where it's needed. We don't need heroes to do this.........
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