24 Jan

Do you know what I discovered about myself this week?   I have turned into a thirteen-year-old boy over this deflate-gate scandal involving the New England Patriots. I, who know nothing about football—seriously, I know less than nothing—can’t help descending into gales of laughter every time someone from the NFL gives a news conference trying to defend yet another one of their lack of character issues. Remember “Spygate”? According to Wikipedia, that scandal was about the Pats “videotaping the New York Jets’ defensive coaches’ signals from a sideline position years ago.” Apparently, in the land of football, this was considered a mega-cheating scandal and cost the Patriots thousands of dollars, so the Pats aren’t receiving much grace from the public (fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me).

Deflated Balls FB Rick McKee The Augusta Chronicle

Used by permission: Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle

Either it’s a lack of sleep (three hours), or I’m really regressing into a pubescent boy, but I fell off the treadmill from the gale-force of my laughter when I heard quarterback Tom Brady give his news conference about his personal handling of the eleven out of twelve underinflated footballs used during the Pats’ 45-7 victory over the Indianapolis Colts that determined who would play in this year’s Super Bowl Game. Brady started the news conference by saying that when he picks his anointed twelve footfalls right before the big game, to him they are perfect. He then went on to say:

“I don’t want anyone touching my balls after that,

Don’t want anyone rubbing them—

Putting any air in them—taking any air out. . .

To me those balls are perfect!”

ROLFL! I can hardly wait for this week’s Saturday Night Live. It is going to be priceless!

NFL Underinflated Ball Milt Priggee  www miltpriggee com

Used by permission: Milt Priggee,

Maybe we ought to give up the ghost on our claim that we are an exceptional nation with great moral character. It’s just too hard, isn’t it?   We’re failing at it here, there, and everywhere. According to a study done in 2010 (The Prevalence of Lying in America: Three Studies of Self-Reported Lies), 96% of us lie like a rug just to get our own way. And if The Fiscal Times is to be believed, they cite a study that says cheating has gone mainstream from parents of high school kids hiring—for thousands of dollars—uber-smart “ringers” to take their kids SAT tests, to websites that will help one cheat on one’s spouse. Way to go, America!

As I meditated on these themes, I had a daydream that instead of the country celebrating the Academy Awards on February 22nd (something I know a great deal about), we ought to have a Cheaters and Liars Awards Show. The trophy could be based on the Patriots’ scandal. Instead of an Oscar, the winners could receive a trophy in the shape of a deflated ball. Can you imagine . . .

Used by permission Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle

Used by permission: Steve Sack, The Minneapolis Star Tribune


SCENE: We zoom in on a gala star-studded awards ceremony somewhere in Los Angeles. Beautiful, and not so beautiful, people can be seen exiting limousines and milling around waiting to walk the red carpet and hopefully catch the eye of one of the top celebrity correspondents. They are primed and ready to show off their designer gowns and suits for the Academy of Cheaters and Liars as they “humbly” announce that winning is not everything—they are just happy to be nominated (remember they are up for awards as liars). Celebrity blogger and author, ET, can be seen waving over Fox News for her first interview.

ET:         Faux News! Welcome to the first annual Academy of Cheaters and Liars awards ceremony. You’ve been nominated for the “Just Can’t Seem to Get the Facts Right” category along with CNN,,, RedState,The Rush Limbaugh Show, and that consummate liar, Glenn Beck. And look at you, girlfriend. You are stylin’ tonight. Who knew right-wingers could “rock your body” like that. And look at that ass—you are definitely “all about that bass,” Baby. Who are you wearing tonight?

FOX:      I’m wearing Armani ‘cause I’ve got “no treble.” He, he, he, he! Get it? Meghan Trainor—“All About That Bass.” Who says Republicans aren’t lowdown with the culture?

ET:         Ah, Foxy Baby, I don’t think “lowdown” means what you think it means. Anyway, how open-minded of you, Foxy, on your choice of formal wear! You know Armani’s gay, right? Don’t get me wrong—I loves me some Armani—I don’t care what his sexuality is. He’s brilliant. I just thought, given your lack of love for gay people and all . . .

FOX:      Armani is not a gay. He’s been married to a woman for thirty years (his childhood sweetheart to be exact), has eight kids, and is a pillar of the Catholic Church in Germany.

ET:         Did you just pull that out of your “bass,” Sugah? And can you spell Google?

UB Award I Steve Sack The Minneapolis Star Tribune

Used by permission: Steve Sack, The Minneapolis Star Tribune

Fox News scurries off in a bit of a huff, although they are slated to win a Deflated Ball for their debacle of stating as fact that France and England have “no go zones” which are Muslim controlled and ruled by Sharia Law. They are favored to win because Fox News repeated this lie multiple times without a shred of facts, summarily offended the French, and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo is threatening to sue their “bass.” You go Faux News!

Our entertainment correspondent sees Mitt Romney off in the distance and beckons him over for an interview.

ET:         Mitt, what a surprise! I did not expect to see you here, Darlin’, but I just found out that you are up for a triple-threat award: the Clueless Award for your 2012 47% comment, the Consummate Liar’s award because you swore eleven times that you would not run for the presidency again (even your wife said “we are done, done, done”), and the Flip-floppers award. But before we try to break that down for our viewing audience, who are you wearing tonight?

MITT:    Robert Comstock.

ET:         But of course, you are—he’s the wonderful Mormon fashion designer. Love, love, love his line, although it’s a little bit pricey for my 47% ass and not quite diva-ish enough for my tastes. In fact, it’s a little casual for this event, don’t you think?

MITT:    I do not. I’m changing my image. I’m all about the poor this presidential campaign—all about my peeps in the hoods everywhere.  This year I’m down with the 47%. I’m bringing on my homeboy, Snoop Puppy Dog as my adjunct campaign advisor. I’m confident that nothing can stop me from occupying the Oval office in 2015 and beyond because I will win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win (did I say that eleven times?)!  I deserve it!  I am called to save our country from the ravages of that Kenyan. I am the man!

ET:         Oh, Mitt Baby. Even I’m feeling a little sorry for you. Did you notice that the Republican Party ran off into the bushes screaming “nooooooooooooooooooooooooo” after you said “yes?” The Koch Brothers invited every Republican they could think of except you, Brother, to their big pow-wow (“the Koch Brothers’ secret bank”) this weekend. I think I stand a better chance of getting invited as an ex-black conservative, born-again liberal before you will. WTF, man? Show some pride. Did losing to a black man cause you that much trauma? Go home and raise your grandkids and forget about ruling the world, or at least America.

MT:        Forget? How dare you! I never lose, I never lose, I hate Jeb Bush, I hate Jeb Bush, I must win all the time, I must win all the time, no matter what, no matter what . . .

Romney I No No No John Darkow Columbia Daily Tribune Missouri

Used by permission: John Darkow, Columbia Daily Tribune, Missouri

As Romney wandered off in his wilderness-chic apparel by Robert Comstock mumbling his “winning” mantra, ET spotted Bill Cosby skulking on the periphery trying to get the black media to cut him some slack and give him an interview about anything except the rumors circling around him. ET hides behind Michael Moore who was there for the Hubris Award for Bloviated Opinions along with Bill Maher, and she stayed put until the dark shadow of Cosby passed by. ET just didn’t have the heart to engage in chit-chat with the murderer of Dr. Huxstable. Besides, she knew exactly what he was wearing because she could spot an Anand Jon Alexander design a mile away (the celebrity designer currently serving 59 years to life in prison in California for raping aspiring models he had drugged—some as young as 14). On the verge of vomiting, and in the attempt to escape from Bill Cosby’s line of vision, and hoping to avoid Michael Moore altogether, she collided with Lance Armstrong and accidentally knocked him off his bike which made him furious.

ET:         Oh, Lance Armstrong, I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to dismantle you from your bike. I didn’t see you there. Can I interview you?

LA:         Whatever.

ET:         There is no use asking who you’re wearing because it’s clear your bike shorts and top are made by you since nobody wants to be associated with you anymore, and I read that you gave all your label-sponsored sportswear to Goodwill. As to why you are here: My media card says that you are up for best documentary of the World’s Greatest Liar: “Lance Armstrong: Stop at Nothing.” You know that you are the only one in your category tonight of the World’s Greatest Liar, don’t you? No one has ever come close to pulling off the massive fraud you did except maybe Bernie Madoff, so you’re sure to be a shoe-in for a Deflated Ball.

LA:         I just want to ask you what I ask everyone else: How can it be cheating or lying when everyone else was doing it? I did what I had to do to win.

ET:         Save it for the Judge, Sweetpea. I’m not going to get into this discussion with you. I just want to say that the documentary is unbelievable, and you deserve a Deflated Ball. Congratulations! I had a lot of admiration and sympathy for you before I saw the documentary (your personal deflated ball situation caused by cancer and all), but I came away from the film feeling absolutely cold inside—as if I had bumped into Satan himself! Dude, you are portrayed as one cold-hearted, mean-spirited, lying, cheating, life-destroying, manipulative, sociopathic, son-of-a-bitch and it’s all through your own words and actions—the narrator barely had to say a thing. No one has ever made me feel that way. Man, I wouldn’t want to ever be your friend or associate.

LA:         Fuck you!

ET:         Yep, that’s what everyone said you’d say if I dared to interview you. It looks like not much has changed about your character. Well, it’s been real. Gotta go!

On that note, our entertainment correspondent fled as far away from Lance Armstrong as she could and took her seat with all the nominees to watch our fallen heroes and idols as they received their Deflated Ball trophies for the selling of their souls to win, to get the gold, to receive the praise, and to harness the power. All she could think was: “America, you sho’ is in trouble, Girl!”

Lance Armstrong Confession Tom Janssen The Netherlands

Used by permission: Tom Janssen, The Netherlands


I am discovering that we have become a nation of cheaters and liars—from the marriage bed to the football field to the pulpit and beyond. No wonder we can’t get much done as a Nation. No wonder we have so many mental-health issues. No wonder our moral compass is shattered. How can we work together to overcome our problems (both individually and societally) if we can’t even trust each other? Winning has become such a powerful drug that most of us will do anything, say anything, and sell any part of our souls to reach that summit. Prestigious schools are being caught in cheating scandals faster than I can say “My Kid’s an Honor Roll Student;” we had a President look us straight in the eye and say, “I did not have sex with that woman,” when he knew damn well he did (I count blow-jobs as sex, thank you very much, BC); and more than half of us divorce each other with 47% citing the reason as unreasonable behavior by our partners.

Well, I’m not having it in my life. I can’t control these national fools who have already betrayed my trust and those who will continue to betray me—but I can control my own sorry ass. (God, please help me to end my days better than when I began—in other words, let me walk the talk until I permanently exit stage left.) As for my husband and my children, it would behoove them to follow my lead because I now write books, and if they don’t behave, one day I will be interviewed by Oprah! Uh, huh—that’s what I’m sayin’!

Cheating husband and wife Daryl Cagle CagleCartoons com

Used by permission: Daryl Cagle,

“To me, football is so much about mental toughness, it’s digging deep, it’s doing whatever you need to do to help a team win and that comes in a lot of shapes and forms.” (Emphasis mine)—Tom Brady (quarterback for the New England Patriots)

“I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live by the light that I have. I must stand with anybody that stands right, and stand with him while he is right, and part with him when he goes wrong.”—Abraham Lincoln

“I would prefer even to fail with honor than win by cheating.”—Sophocles

“All good is hard. All evil is easy. Dying, losing, cheating, and mediocrity is easy. Stay away from easy.”—Scott Alexander





Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Posted by on January 24, 2015 in Uncategorized


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

23 responses to “DEFLATED BALLS

  1. imagesbytdashfield

    January 24, 2015 at 10:54 am

    Discovering we are a nation of cheaters and liars? It’s been going on for a much longer time than “Ballgate” here; for centuries and that’s probably erring on the short end of the time line . It’s just with social media and the news we are bombarded by it more than ever before.

    • etomczyk

      January 24, 2015 at 11:00 am

      TD: Boy, you read fast! I just posted this. But you are so right. I purposely soft pedaled that line so it wouldn’t sound too preachy. According to the Bible, our first screw up was to cheat, our second to lie, and a few years down the road to kill (Cain and Abel). Yikes! Thanks for reading. Have a great weekend.

      • imagesbytdashfield

        January 24, 2015 at 11:02 am

        I did enjoy you snickering about Brady’s balls though. 😉 Enjoy your weekend too.

  2. Ann Gaudreaux

    January 24, 2015 at 11:26 am

    Dear El: enjoyed this laugh-out-loud missive but these hero-worship things always get me thinking about, “put not your trust in princes” et al. I try to trust those who are true, but I also try to remember that we all have in our hearts the power to be bad, try as we might to be good. We both have have been lied to so many times, I know it is by God’s grace that we can get up and face each day. This country is a mess in the ethics department, and people do not want to take responsibility for their own failings. All good is hard. >

    • etomczyk

      January 24, 2015 at 11:35 am

      Hey Ann: Thanks so much for reading this story. You are so right. I am amazed at all the lies that I have had to slug through from the past we are both familiar with. Trying to do so without losing one’s faith is a Herculean task, however. So glad I’m still hanging in there. Not taking responsibility for one’s own failings is a huge one. I watched the Lance Armstrong documentary twice with my mouth hanging open at the audacity of his lies and the cruelty against his life-long friends when they wouldn’t go along with the ruse. Oh, man!

      I didn’t quite understand the last sentence about the instruction from your daughter (removed it from your comment now that it is public). When you get a moment, can you send me a private email with a bit more elaboration? Take care (soon we will be sipping gin and tonics on my deck). 🙂

  3. 1jaded1

    January 24, 2015 at 12:21 pm

    One of those quotes is not like the others…one of those quotes just doesn’t belong. This is sad but your take on it is so damn funny!

    • 1jaded1

      January 24, 2015 at 5:48 pm

      So sorry. My sense of humor is twisted regarding the quotes. To clarify, too many people have the do whatever it takes to get ahead mentality, and it is sickening and sad. I’m not watching the superbowl this year and I couldn’t care less who wins. I think all footballs must be inspected before the game. It really is sad.

      • etomczyk

        January 26, 2015 at 11:06 pm

        Jaded: I got it your previous comment, and you were the only one of my readers that pointed out the irony of the first quote vs. the others. Yah! Thanks so much for reading my blog. Truly appreciate it. All the best.

  4. talesfromthemotherland

    January 24, 2015 at 2:38 pm

    As a Bostonian girl to the core, who now lives in Seattle and loves the Seahawks… there’s no losing this one. 😉 Thought you’d get a kick out of this one, which is die hard Bahstan attitude (warning: language):

    • etomczyk

      January 24, 2015 at 3:20 pm

      Dawn: See. . .what you just said is totally “Greek” to me. (I really know nothing about football!) But I’ll be watching the Super Bowl for more than halftime and the commercials this year just because of this Patriots’ debacle. What a hoot!

  5. valentinelogar

    January 24, 2015 at 2:58 pm

    You are killing me…truly, killing me. That you are only now discovering this, I wish I had not known this for so long. My problem, I can’t listen anymore without wanting to choke the life out of some nit wit who thought it was just fine to cheat, steal, lie, murder or otherwise pillage.

    At least though, I don’t have to join their ranks. Neither do you. We will continue to sit on our pedestals.

    • etomczyk

      January 24, 2015 at 3:22 pm

      Val: Actually, I too discovered this state of affairs almost from the time I could comprehend (around four years old), but it reads less preachy to put it as a recent discovery. Sometimes, like rainy days and Mondays, it really gets me down. 🙂

      • valentinelogar

        January 24, 2015 at 8:23 pm

        I knew that (having read your book and all). But really, I wanted to give you the benefit of having seen the world through rose colored glasses, because you are good like that.

  6. becomingcliche

    January 24, 2015 at 5:08 pm

    I got a giggle over Lance Armstrong’s deflated ball. Yours are made of brass, lady, and I love you for it!

    • etomczyk

      January 24, 2015 at 5:18 pm

      Thanks BC. Hope all is well.

  7. Elyse

    January 24, 2015 at 7:10 pm

    Cheating? Lord. The American Public gets more upset about football than about the world. What a country.

    • etomczyk

      January 25, 2015 at 11:11 am

      Elyse: Isn’t it the truth! I can’t believe the bruh-ha-ha that has happened over this. NFL players can beat the crap out of their wives and children and the fans will look the other way, but at the thought of a few deflated footballs, they rend their clothes and sit in sack cloth and ashes. What a country is right.

      • Elyse

        January 25, 2015 at 11:15 am

        We as a country need to seriously examine our priorities!

  8. Fumon

    January 25, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    I have it on the highest authority that the quote is “fool me once…shame on you, fool me twice — you can’t get fooled again”!

    • etomczyk

      January 26, 2015 at 10:58 pm

      Fumon: So true, so true. . .I like your version of the quote much better. 🙂

  9. Lorna's Voice

    January 28, 2015 at 2:58 pm

    I’ve said it a million times while rolling my eyes: men and their balls…

  10. Dottie

    January 31, 2015 at 10:37 am

    Eleanor: I grew up with football and still don’t understand what’s going on. But I always loved half-time. That’s when it was a marching band, not a prima donna exposing her tits or some crazed rocker prancing around and grabbing his balls. (It does seem that balls do have a lot to do with this game though, doesn’t it ?) I think I’ll head straight for the nachos and hole up in the bedroom with a mindless Lifetime movie 🙂

  11. Chris Tryon

    February 14, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    LOVED most of your blog! It sounds like some of your exes are related to a few of mine! I enjoyed your cartoon about marrying someone who can make you laugh. My husband doesn’t have a romantic bone in his body-all of them are funny bones! I also enjoyed the quote from Maya Angelou and try to remember it when I hear stories about men treating women poorly: When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time. That does not just apply to dating, it applies to ALL relationships. Enjoy your weekend!


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