Every day seems to bring new marvels in human achievement. Yet there is one area that seems to be doomed to eternal categorization as a lost cause, resulting in men and women across the globe throwing up their hands in despair and frustration:
Barry Bonds’ image.
Yes, Barry these days is Three Mile Island with legs. He is the Leona Helmsley of baseball. If you pooled all the intellectual resources at an image consultants’ convention on this project, the result would be something like this: “We got nothin’.”
Because of the BALCO scandal — which reached a crescendo with the recent release of “Game of Shadows,” a detailed account of the use of performance-enhancing substances by Bonds and others that has triggered an investigation by MLB — Barry’s credibility is currently lower than the proverbial snake belly in a wagon rut.
That’s not to say he is bereft of fans. There are still many, especially in and around San Francisco, who would wave their pompons for Barry even if he spit in their faces. There is no explanation for this, other than to point out it takes all kinds to make up a world.
Yet although Barry may be an imperious egomaniac, he is not pure evil, and therefore not irredeemable. So in the interests of compassion for my fellow man, I would like to offer Barry a way out of this maze of persecution.
He should tell the truth.
This will never happen, I’m afraid. Barry is too far gone. He is too dizzy from spin. He is like Humphrey Bogart in “The Caine Mutiny,” maniacally convinced that he is right and those hurling criticisms are jealous and bent on taking him down.
This should be a time for celebration. Instead, Barry enters 2006 trying to break the home run marks set by Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron, but each day brings more scrutiny and pressure and embarrassing news.
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