When you’re a little out of the mainstream in terms of strength or the amount of muscle you have, it’s inevitable that you’ll run into someone who accuses you of doping. It’s always someone out of the loop, a non-lifter, who points the finger and says “steroids” with great authority. It’s happened to me and last week, believe it or not, it happened to my son. Yes, the 12 year old was taking heat at school from a regular-sized kid for his supposed steroid use.
It’s true, he’s very strong…and he also happens to be tall. He’s an athlete so he’s also more muscular than his classmates.
The funny thing is that the boy who was giving him grief didn’t know that my son takes his cues from me and considers accusations of steroid use a funny and in an odd way a complimentary thing. Let me explain.
Having put countless hours and immense effort into my workouts these last 20+ years, in a quest for that beautiful muscle (and strength) I love so much, I’m delighted when some ill-informed person thinks I’m on steroids. I’m immediately cheered by the comments and consider them proof I’m doing something right. I suppose I could get angry but all I can think about is that my hard work shows! I don’t care one whit what an average person on the street thinks. Anybody whose spent even a little time in the gym KNOWS my physique isn’t built on drugs. That fact is obvious to people involved in fitness.
So it wasn’t the harassment, the repeated accusations of steroid use and daily name calling that upset my son. He’s one of the most laid back people I’ve ever seen. He’s almost unnaturally even-tempered. He never gets wound around the axle. He never did; not in even when he was tiny guy in preschool, not even in the most heated football games when the other team is taking repeated cheapshots and saying all manner of terrible things (like “take that guy out”). I think the whole thing went south when the mouthy kid threw a Wet Wipe in his face. That act resulted in one little “love tap” which culminated in the kid running, screeching, into the school clinic to see the nurse and me getting a call from the Vice-Principal.
Hmmmm….know what my dad used to say? “Mess with the bull…get the horn.” The older generation had more sense than some give them credit for.
At any rate, the kid didn’t show up at school the next day.
I suspect he was out looking for some steroids to take.