lance hates plano

You know, it appears Lance Armstrong didn’t much enjoy life in Plano, the “soul-deadening” Dallas suburb he grew up in:
“It was the quintessential American suburb, with strip malls, perfect grid streets and faux-antebellum country clubs in between empty brown wasted fields,” he writes. “It was populated by guys in golf shirts and Sansabelt pants and women in bright fake gold jewelry, and alienated teenagers.”
If you were not upper middle class or a football player, he writes, “you didn’t exist.”
As the son of a secretary, who raised him as a single parent, and as an aspiring athlete with little hand-eye coordination and no skill at moving laterally, he was neither.
“I felt shunned at times,” he recalls in the book. “I was the guy who did weird sports and who didn’t wear the right labels.” Kids in the “social” group made fun of his Lycra shorts.

When school officials at Plano East High won’t let him take off time from school to train, he says: “I knew damned well that if I played football and wore Polo shirts and had parents who belonged to the Los Rios Country Club, things would be different.”
Good to know we Planophobes aren’t alone!

2 thoughts on “lance hates plano”

  1. i hate plano as much as any teenager who lives there, but i feel compelled to offer another side to this story. according to a friend of mine who graduated this year from PESH and had some of the same teachers as armstrong, he missed a lot of school in high school to train and compete in cycling events, and when he came back he expected to be allowed to graduate. the school couldn’t let him do that, obviously; he had missed too much school to get credit for some classes. if i remember correctly, he later found a private school that would let him graduate. i suppose he’s still bitter. poor lance- the big mean school didn’t reward him with a diploma when he blew off school to focus on his cycling career. i only know the story secondhand, but it still seems kind of silly for him to expect a school to let him “take time off” to train, get mad when they won’t, take the time off anyway, expect to graduate when he comes back, and then whine about it 15 years later.

  2. Good points all. You’ve got the Lance-at-PESH story essentially right — more details at the link in this post. He ended up graduating from Bending Oaks High School.
    That said, his point is that if he was one of the rich country-club kids, PESH would have been more accomodating. No way to confirm or deny that, I suppose.

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