A society of doping,
dubbing and duping
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Are you as tired of the lying, conniving and manipulation
around us as much as I am? Where is reality when even Reality TV is not
reality? Where is reality when a winner may not really be a winner or
when a singer may or may not be singing live? Are we done yet? I am.
What's real and not real or what is true and not true certainly has come
into play recently: the doping of Lance Armstrong, the duping of Manti
Te'o and the possible lip-synching of Beyonce during her singing of the
national anthem at the president's Inauguration.
In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, Armstrong, the seven-time Tour de
France winner, stated he had taken performance-enhancing drugs, and had
blood transfusions to increase his stamina during the world-cycling
Te'o, Notre Dame's star linebacker, sat down with Katie Couric and
chronicled months of deception that reportedly was the mastermind of a
casual friend pretending to be a young woman named Lennay Kekua, who
allegedly engaged in an online romance with Te'o, who never met her
because she never existed.
We learn that the fabricated young woman had a car accident, survived
the accident and then was diagnosed with leukemia and died.
Don't shed tears for remember she never existed to begin with. Yet, when
Te'o, a runner-up for the Heisman Trophy, learned that the young woman
never existed, he didn't come clean with Notre Dame officials and became
complicit with the hoax that the university, unknowingly seized upon to
use for good publicity for the university and its football team.
In a recent interview, Rick Reilly a commentator for ESPNsports.com said
he believed Te'o's near win for the Heisman Trophy was fueled by
sympathy. Also, Reilly believes that Te'o will probably be drafted by
the NFL in the first round, but he questions whether or not he is ready
to run an NFL defensive when he has shown how gullible and naïve he can
be. The Te'o story is not really over. There may be other aspects to the
story that we don't know about. You may recall, he even lied to his
parents and told them that he had met Lennay Kekua, the fictitious
person, whose voice someone dubbed on a number of voicemails.
We go from duping to dubbing with the next reaIity show, Beyonce's
singing of the National Anthem. Did she or did she not lip synch the
"Star-Spangled Banner"? Was she mouthing the words to the Anthem while a
pre-recording of her singing the Anthem was broadcast to the thousands
of people in attendance and watching on TV.
To date, Beyonce has not acknowledged that her singing was pre-recorded.
The Marine Corp Band spokesman did say that all musical performances are
pre-recorded as a precaution against the unforeseen and at the last
minute allegedly it was Beyonce's decision to go with the pre-recorded
track with the Marine Band playing live.
Come Sunday, no doubt the public will wonder if Beyonce will be singing
live during her half-time performance . In past Super Bowl half-time
shows, the Black-Eyed Peas performed live while Madonna performed to a
What is disappointing in all of this, is the deception, from the
severity of Armstrong's doping and duping of the American public to the
insignificant possibility of Beyonce's lip-synching. In between, I find
Manti Te'o's gullibility in the hoax played on him a bit scary. Are our
youth today that vulnerable, gullible and naïve? His father sums up his
son's actions as "a 21-year-old trying to act like a man."
Isn't he a senior ready to graduate Notre Dame University? Maybe as a
star linebacker he learned how to buck heads just too many times.
I remember a few years ago my nephew asked me if I had ever turned over
a package of carrots in the supermarket. If you do, you will see the
true color of the carrots. When you look through the front of the
cellphone bag, the carrots look very orange.
That is because in reality the cellophane in the front has an orange
tint to it to make you think the carrots are that orange when in reality
they are not.
Try it sometime; you'll see the difference between how the carrots look
from the front of the bag as opposed to the back. Obviously this may not
true with all carrot packaging, but worth a look-see. In other words, we
really have to look closely to see the true color, whether it's people
or produce. Or maybe, we've just become a society of duping, doping and
Rita Papazian is a freelance writer who has covered Norwalk extensively.