On the HillPosted: February 14, 2008
I watched some of the Congressional hearings on steroids yesterday while I was on the treadmill at the gym. (As I look over this last sentence I should clarify that I myself wasn’t on steroids). I resent the fact that I have to explain to my boys why one of their favorite pitchers is accused of using performance enhancing drugs. As an Orioles fan I also resent the fact that he’s one of their favorite players, but that’s another story, and a hazard of living in New York.
I can’t say watching a Congressional hearing while running was very motivational. It didn’t exactly pump me up (no pun intended). And it does seem silly that the government is involved at all.
I just finished reading New York Times sports columnist Ira Berkow’s book “Full Swing” — basically an autobiography. He’s been covering sports personalities since the mid-1960’s and saw the same post-Watergate skepticism infiltrate the sports world. Suddenly our sports heroes were shown as real people rather than perfect ideals and role models. There’s a sense of flawed humanity that becomes revealed in the process. From a theological point of view this makes sense — we’re all redeemed sinners. From a child’s perspective it’s disillusioning.
Of course this all makes me wonder what performance enhancing drugs for clergy might look like. And don’t tell me it’s the Holy Spirit. I’m talking about the clerical equivalent of human growth hormone. Would you take something if a quick shot in the sacristy made you a better preacher, more compassionate, or a crack administrator?
I don’t know. But if I’m ever called to testify before Congress, I’ll swear the only performance enhancing drug I’ve ever used is Advil.