Thursday, August 18, 2005

Jose Canseco is Not an Ass


(image via us.movies)

Jose Canseco expends an inordinate amount of ink in his magnum opus " Juiced" ratting on the owners of celebrity ass cheeks that he injected with steroids. Raphael Palmeiro, the owner of one of those asses, recently tested positive for steroids. Palmeiro famously denied to Congress ever having taken steroids, in a now infamous finger pointing sound bite. Congressional staff members are reviewing the documents related to "Raffy's" failed drug test.

Before that failed drug test, it was easy to characterize Jose Canseco as some oily liar. No offense to Canseco (well, maybe a little), we're just stating the obvious. He's got this seedy, unlearned vibe going, you know? Now, it appears that steroid abuse in America's game may be as widespread as Jose initially said it was. Clearly, we have not heard the last word on steroids in sports, especially if Senator John McCain, a strong advocate of clean sports, decides to run for the Oval Office in 2008.

Is Jose Canseco a prophet? No, not really. Canseco's magnum opus "Juiced," quite frankly, leaves readers with a bad brandy aftertaste. The former designated hitter reveals the dim vistas and intellectually barren landscapes of his literary imagination when he writes, artlessly, in the Introduction:

I'm tired of hearing such short sighted crap from people who have no idea what they're talking about. Steroids are here to stay. That's a fact. I guarantee it. Steroids are the future."

Futurists take note. Canseco continues, creepily (cue Bach�s Toccata in D Minor), �by the time my eight year old daughter, Josie, has graduated from high school, a majority of all professional athletes � in all sports� will be taking steroids. And believe it or not, that�s good news.�

Class dismissed. (The Corsair sparks up Montecristo Platinum) Jose Canseco, despite ample evidence to the contrary, is not an ass. He just plays one rather convincingly on TV. (The Corsair leisurely puffs) Anatomically speaking, though, Jose is more of a heel. In a better world, in a nobler age, Canseco would be amid price range gigolo, man-whoring with a vengeance in the society of rich Miami widows. Instead, to our detriment, he is a New York Times bestselling author and celebreality star. (The Corsair averts his gaze) Still, it takes a certain amount of sangfroid to refer to one�s mistresses in print as �road beef.� The recently broken Madonna, Canseco�s choicest cut, puts in a brief-beef appearance to make out with, but not bed, the Oily One. We can only assume that the rest of the nameless, faceless tenderloinal fuckys parted with Canseco, feeling ... �well-done� (Exaggerated cough suggesting feigned detachment)

The thing about �road beef,� though, as opposed to the domesticated or gourmet varieties, is that it can be gamey. (Arched eyebrow cocked) From The New York Daily News� most excellent Gatecrasher we get this alarming morsel of the good stuff, namely,"Which baseball player who used to be married to Jessica Canseco gave her a nasty little something he picked up on the road while she was pregnant, according to her new tell-all book, 'Juicy'?"

Charmed, I�m sure. Jose Canseco, he of the jutting horsejaw, appears, in essence, to be some intermediary life form between man and simian. It boggles the imagination, Canseco�s enduring celebrity. It drives us to distraction, really. Sure, in 1998, when he hit 46 home runs, before we knew about the �roids, Jose was a newsworthy diversion. But now? The Corsair is thoroughly vexed. What�s more, according to those glorious Page Sixxies:

"THAT as soon as Jose Canseco showed off his naked torso on 'The Surreal Life,' the casting director for 'Charmed' called the retired slugger to book him for a guest-star spot. His manager, Bob DeBrino, is also mulling offers from producers who want to make a movie version of his best-selling memoir, 'Juiced'"

Goddman this man and his buzz. It is instructive to note, however, that another of Mr. DeBrino�s other production credits is, �Intimate Portrait: Alyssa Milano.� (Averted Gaze) Just so you know. Granted, that was bitchy.

Anyway, Canseco, come to think of it, probably has all sorts of original animal senses that we, as homo-erectus, gave up in our remote past when we left the moist jungle canopy and built cities. We imagine that Jose emits some sort of Neanderthalic pheromone cocktail, an organic musk that is irresistible catnip to media executives. Or something.

Jose Canseco exemplifies the Freudian Id unencumbered, unrestrained. He seems to devoid of any semblance of a moral compass. For one, he freely admits to having done steroids, sullying, in the process, the All-American sport of baseball. Then, Canseco gives steroid injections to his so-called friends (in, you can imagine, those hard to reach ass-spots). Next, he rats those friends out, publicly, selling lots of books and lining his pockets with Dead Prezzies in the process. This man clearly does not deserve the media attention with which he's being lavished.

Obviously, there�s some backstory here that we are missing. Let�s go back to 1984. A deathbed promise to his dying mother sets Canseco on the path to a narcotic destiny. In the pages of Juiced, Canseco touchingly promises his mother that he will become �the best athlete in the world, no matter what it takes.� Jose admits, later, that his mother would never understand or approve of his use of drugs. Then things go sideways.

Jose�s fetid love affair with the juice begins shortly thereafter. It is an enduring love. Lurid. In Miami, aftersome pizza, Canseco�s friend -- �Al� -- injects him with an oil based steroid. For Jose, things will never be the same. �You actually feel the needle penetrating your buttock muscle the first time,� he writes in purple prose (Gee, thanks for sharing!). �Then, the needle is pulled out, and you expect it to hurt, too, but it doesn�t.� (Shakespeare, no dobt, wished he crafted such a sentence)

After the breaking of his steroidal cherry, Jose and �Al� celebrate with a rigorous upper body workout atthe local gym. Who wouldn't? Two weeks later, Canseco writes, the results are noticeable.

Stan Lee couldn�t have concoted a better origin. First, you have a skinny immigrant kid from a Communist country. Then, you have baseball, that most American of sports. Throw in a deathbed promise to Mama. Finally � the coup de grace � a �super soldier� secret formula. All that is left vacant is a super villain; or, perhaps Canseco is his own super villain. Of course, in the real world as in Marvel comics, superpowers come with troubling side effects. In Jose�s case, the steroids left him with atrophied, shrunken testicles.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Considering that he came from, basically, nothing, the boy has done well for himself. But the thing about his balls ruined the whole story for me. It that part true? Trading body parts for glory does not seem right to me.