Short Fiction For l’âge de dopage

Words by Luke Batten, Jonathan Sadler and Carson Fisk-Vittori

Illustration by Becca Goesling

The USS Madone

The USS Madone née Mary Celeste, a Hanjin container ship full of used and for sale 1998-2006 US Postal/Discovery bikes, thirty-two suitcases of swiss francs, conflict diamonds and a bag full of Nokia 1100 mobile phones was spotted off the coast of Tierra Del Fuego after having been refused entry to WADA signatory countries. FDA Investigator, Jeff Novitzky and USADA’s Travis Tygart were last seen in a small speedboat cautiously approaching the vessel.


Paul Kimmage teaches professional cyclists the Japanese teaching of wabi-sabi, a concept derived from the Buddhist teaching of the three marks of existence, specifically impermanence, suffering, and emptiness or absence of self-nature.


Armstrong has denied doping and asserted he was still a seven-time winner of the Tour during a speech at the Willie Nelson’s biodiesel pump, BioWillie, in Carl’s Corner, Texas.

Postal Service

Ben Gibbard and Jimmy Tamborello, lead singers of the Postal Service, deny allegations of conspiring with Armstrong and team in the elaborate doping system.

Positively False

Twelve-year-old Diane Evans of Joplin Missouri chose Floyd Landis’s Positively False for her summer read. Evan’s father purchased the book new on for $2.45. Ms. Evans said it was a “real page turner,” and finished it in less than a week. She then spent the rest of the summer telling who ever would listen about this old bike rider who was wrongly accused of cheating a long time ago.

Planets or Stars

In the future, former professinal cyclists, Lance Armstrong, Floyd Landis, Tyler Hamilton, and Jan Ullrich find themselves at a sleepover arranged by you guessed it, Jonathan Vaughters, near Boulder, Colorado. Our cycling heroes can be found shoulder to shoulder, looking skyward, wrapped in down sleeping bags, circled by 14 empty containers of boxed wine. They do not talk about the scandals that enveloped their careers. They do not talk of the pain, turmoil and the loss of love because it simply no longer exists. Instead they talk about the infinite depth of the sky and the inability to say with certainty if they are looking at planets or stars.