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Wisconsin Death Trip

AUSTIN, TX-Following cyclist Lance Armstrong's announcement last night that he was dropping his opposition to charges that he used performance-enhancing drugs, a sense of profound disappointment reportedly settled over the single individual left on Earth who still believed he was innocent.

Gary Osgood, a 32-year-old sales account executive, and the only person in the world who did not react to the news that Armstrong would be stripped of his seven Tour de France titles with a shrug of his shoulders and a knowing nod, told reporters he was devastated by the story.

Saying he felt "truly let down" by Armstrong, Osgood expressed a sense of anger and frustration that more than 300 million U.S. residents had already experienced and come to terms with at least three years ago.

"I still can't believe it," said Osgood, displaying a profound bewilderment and shock that was felt by no one else in the world. "You really stand behind an athlete and then something like this happens. Honestly, I don't even know what to say."

"How could he disappoint us like this?" added a visibly stunned Osgood, the only human being in existence who was not completely expecting this exact news item to come out at some point.

Osgood-the lone individual who didn't lose faith in the cyclist after numerous questionable blood tests and multiple claims by fellow cyclists that Armstrong was doping-reportedly experienced actual distress upon hearing the news, as well as a feeling of "sharp sadness" that was shared by an estimated 0 percent of his fellow Americans.

Though reports indicate the rest of humanity has gone about its day as if nothing shocking or surprising had happened, Osgood said he remained motionless on his couch for nearly 20 minutes this morning as he processed the news. In addition, unlike everyone else who is even vaguely aware of Lance Armstrong, at no point did he sarcastically say to a coworker or friend, "Didn't see that one coming."

"I know as well as anyone else that some athletes do steroids, but Lance?" said Osgood, his na??evt?? reported to be somewhat endearing but ultimately pathetic. "Why would he do something like this? Why would he lie?"

Osgood went on to call Armstrong a "fallen hero," a label that anyone who has followed Lance Armstrong in the past five years had attached to the cyclist well before a single accomplishment had been officially stricken from the record books.

Sources later confirmed that Osgood was the only person left in the world who wears a Livestrong bracelet without looking at it and feeling somewhat disingenuous.

"If we can't believe in Lance Armstrong, who can we believe in?" said Osgood, almost as if this news had come out in 2001, prior to everyone pretty much accepting the fact that Armstrong was a hypercompetitive **** who would do anything to gain an advantage. "This is a sad day for America."

At press time, Osgood admitted that if he was being honest with himself, he did have a very slight suspicion that Armstrong might have been doping.

August 28, 2012  10:53 PM ET

"Nice cut and paste doping too?" LOL

August 28, 2012  11:17 PM ET

Lance LOVES me....I play in the YELLOW BAND from hell. I feel sorry for the guy actually. The TOP 22 cyclists from previous TDF finishes have all been busted for dope, or have been under investigation. The POOR slob only did the right thing...take your chances and EVEN the playing field. Is it right....left...of logic ......NO! But why let CHEATERS prosper in front of you. "GO WITH FLOW"

August 28, 2012  11:25 PM ET

Lance may have lost forever his 7 Tour of France races but, he'll always have Dodgeball. That...they cannot take away!

August 28, 2012  11:30 PM ET

Lance may have lost forever his 7 Tour of France races but, he'll always have Dodgeball. That...they cannot take away!

OMG....U wankaaaaah! lol

August 28, 2012  11:31 PM ET

OMG....U wankaaaaah! lol

Bottled water, baby, bottled water. LOL

August 29, 2012  01:33 PM ET

Bottled water, baby, bottled water. LOL

Me too, but when camping most of the places have a fresh well to quench your thirst. It's hard to imagine drinking water that 1000's of years old. Like 10's of thousands of years. Makes me brain hurt just thinking about it...

August 30, 2012  03:28 PM ET

Saw this at ESPN.

"I'm wearing something yellow Friday for Lance Armstrong. Not because I think he's innocent. He just gave up his chance to prove his innocence, so I suppose he isn't.

But I don't care. I'm wearing yellow just to say thank you. If he cheated in a sport where cheating is as common as eating, then I'm wearing yellow to thank him for everything he's done since he cheated.

I'm wearing something yellow for the way he changed cancer in this country from dread to hope. I'm wearing something yellow for everybody who got their chilling cancer diagnosis and said to themselves, "Lance did it. Why can't I?"

Want to join me?

Dig out your old Livestrong bracelet. Wear a yellow scarf, yellow socks, watch "Old Yeller." Just make yellow a part of your Friday.

Yes, the United States Anti-Doping Agency -- riding roughshod on slippery rules and sketchy standards -- declared Armstrong guilty of doping. Then last Friday, Armstrong stopped fighting them. "Enough is enough," he wrote. It might as well have been a firing squad. It was that one-sided.

When a man who never quits finally quits, you don't know how to feel.

"It was a somber moment," says his agent, Bill Stapleton. "He looked at his options and it was like, 'Which one is the best worst?' You can't go on with these kind of legal bills, with people tearing apart your work. It was just too hard on his family."

Sure, Armstrong could go to arbitration. But he's already spent over $5 million on his defense, according to friends. And would you go to arbitration, knowing that USADA sets up the rules of arbitration, sets up the rules of what can be admitted into arbitration and approves the arbitrators? Would you go, knowing it could take two or three more years? Knowing that even if you won, USADA could appeal?

So, yes, USADA has stripped him of his seven Tour de France titles even though nobody's still quite sure they can strip him. If Switzerland investigates Roger Federer and finds he doped, can it take away his U.S. Open trophies?

It's all ugly. The whole sport is ugly. If the Union Cycliste Internationale, cycling's governing body, upholds the penalty, do you realize that 14 of the last 17 TdF winners would be expunged? And what will they do with them? In five of Armstrong's seven wins, the second-place finishers were implicated in doping scandals of their own. One year -- 2003 -- you have to fish down to fifth place to find somebody clean.

Essentially, this is cycling: If you can get on your bike and make it around your local reservoir without doping, you might have just won next year's Tour de France.

So Lance Armstrong may have cheated, just like everybody else. Or maybe he gave up the fight because the whole thing was more crooked than San Francisco's Lombard Street. After all, USADA convicted him on hearsay, not proof. They don't have a single failed sample to hang their hats on -- Armstrong has never failed one -- so they took the word of riders like self-admitted liar Floyd Landis. The whole thing, all their evidence, is based on testimony, not tests."

August 30, 2012  03:30 PM ET

"Maybe these riders are lying, maybe they're not. I don't care. I'm wearing yellow Friday because I want Armstrong to know what he meant to me, my family and the dozens of people I know who took Armstrong with them into those chemotherapy rooms and radiation labs and the darkest corners of their fears.

When my sister was diagnosed with breast cancer, the first book she read was his "It's Not About the Bike." She was inspired. She lives. The man is a hope machine.

I'm wearing something yellow Friday because I know he never cheated the cancer patients who believe in him. I've sat with him as he spends his daily hour answering the emails of perfect strangers -- all suddenly cancer-stricken and panicked.

I've watched him pushing the Texas legislature, poking the California legislature, prodding the U.S. Congress to free up money for research. I know what he stands for -- $475 million raised to educate cancer patients so far -- and so do millions of others. That's why, the day after his decision to quit trying to prove his innocence, Livestrong took in 770 percent of what it had the day before. That's why every company he endorses has stuck with him.

Fine. If he cheated, wipe him out of the record book. Make him pay back the first-place money he won all those years. He gave it all away to his teammates anyway. There's some irony for you. Plenty of those guys -- George Hincapie, Landis, Tyler Hamilton -- were suspected of, or admitted, using banned substance too.

But wear something yellow Friday just to return the favor. Wear something yellow to tell Lance Armstrong that they might be able to ban him for life, but they can't ban him from life. Wear it to tell him to keep going, to keep fighting for cancer-research legislation, to keep showing people through his Livestrong foundation how to fight through the red tape and get to the treatment that can cure them.

In five years, nobody will want to check to see if Lance Armstrong's name is still attached to those trophies. But in five years, they'll still want him leading any peloton that's trying to chase down cancer.

In an email reply to me Monday, Armstrong said, "Sorry, but I'm done talking about this, forever. I'm focused on what's ahead of me -- not behind. Regardless of the injustice that has been done. Onward and upward."

Friday, it's our turn to talk."

written by Rick Reilly

August 30, 2012  03:31 PM ET

So, wear something yellow on Friday in support of Lance Armstrong.

August 31, 2012  01:12 PM ET

So, wear something yellow on Friday in support of Lance Armstrong.

I pee yellow too! HA? lol

August 31, 2012  03:36 PM ET

I pee yellow too! HA? lol

Ever pee into a toilet with blue water? I can pee green. LOL.

September 1, 2012  12:36 AM ET

Ever pee into a toilet with blue water? I can pee green. LOL.

I was inferring ...... ohhh, never mind woman! HA!

September 1, 2012  12:39 AM ET

I just can't think like a man no matter how hard I try. I don't spit, I don't grab my crotch, I don't belch in public. I do however occasionally fart in the kitchen. :P

September 1, 2012  08:59 PM ET

I just can't think like a man no matter how hard I try. I don't spit, I don't grab my crotch, I don't belch in public. I do however occasionally fart in the kitchen. :P

HAHAHA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

September 4, 2012  02:07 PM ET

I'm no man, but a living legend unto thy self. YIKES!


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