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Raymond Parker checked in to Victoria General yesterday morning for gall bladder surgery. Today he's back home staring at a bedside table stocked with a generous variety of pharmaceuticals to help "get him through the rough spots." He circulated the offering below to a few friends... but it was too good not to share. A warning though, gentle reader, some of the passages below were written while under the influence of UCI banned substances. [Eric F.]

Tour de Gaul:
Scandal erupts around allegations of drug use
by Phil Leggit

"To be a cyclist is to be a student of cycling's core lies pain, hard and bitter as the pit inside a juicy peach. It doesn't matter if you're sprinting for an Olympic medal, a town sign, a trailhead, or the rest stop with the homemade brownies. If you never confront pain, you're missing the essence of the sport. Without pain, there's no adversity. Without adversity, no challenge. Without challenge, no improvement. No improvement, no sense of accomplishment and no deep-down joy. ~ Scott Martin

After leading the 50 kilometre prologue last Sunday, Raymond Parkerdor continued to dominate this classic test of intestinal fortitude, as controversy swirled around claims by outsiders the Canadian rider has used morphine to “get through the rough spots.”

This morning, tabloid headlines sarcastically blared “Yellow Jersey well deserved!”

After race organizers examined the course by remote camera yesterday, a dangerous section of the route was cut out, deemed “stone-strewn and superfluous” by team doctors.

Dismissing outside criticism as "misinformed," Parkerdor said from his hospital bed, this morning: “Only mad dogs and masochists tackle this stage of Le Tour with aspirin!”

Unfazed, the rider announced that he will switch to dilaudid for the home stretch.

April 2, 2005
[Not by Phil Leggit - actually written by Raymond Parker]
Personal friends of the great Parkerdor are invited to view this
photo of his aprez-tour recovery.