Lance Armstrong (Through the Eyes of a Feminist Hopeless Romantic)

In case you’ve been under a rock for the past week, dethroned cyclist Lance Armstrong “told all” to the queen of the confessional, Oprah Winfrey. And most people reacted much like Claude Rains’ character in Casablanca upon learning about gambling at Rick’s – “We’re shocked, simply shocked” – or something to that effect.  The highly promoted, well-publicized interview covered many subjects, and plenty of people have already chimed in about the self-serving, mutually convenient nature of the big tell-all, and about their skepticism regarding Armstrong’s sincerity. But I was more surprised that Oprah stayed away from the good stuff, or at least what seems most interesting for a hopeless romantic like me who knows nothing about competitive cycling (but is addicted to Downton Abbey and Jane Austen): his love life! Armstrong has certainly been a cad to his teammates, trainers, sponsors, and anyone else he’s sued or insulted (and I love his defense of all the horrid things he said about his teammate’s wife, claiming as long as he didn’t say she was “fat,” all the other names he called her were okay). But he’s been spectacularly awful to his romantic partners, dumping his first wife for a glamorous rock star, whom he then very publicly dumped because she wanted kids (complete with snarky comments about her “biological clock”), ironically next taking up with a child star (okay, Ashley Olsen was an adult by that point but she still looks like a teenage waif), and then adding insult to injury by having two kids with the newest girlfriend after that.

I’m hoping the resilient and talented Ms. Crow will pull a Taylor Swift and write some devastating new song about Armstrong’s betrayal of her, but in the meantime, I’ve taken a stab at it myself.

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