Yes, I Called Lance Armstrong a "Jerk"
It's jarring, dramatic, and memorable—and not in a good way. While it's curious that a multinational company chooses to sell athletic wear in this fashion, the ad is even more interesting for what it tells us about Armstrong's psyche. On its surface, it reinforces the idea that Lance is standing behind the victims of a disease that nearly claimed his life. That is indisputable. It also, however, pushes the idea that Armstrong is some kind of savior. HisShepard Fairey-designed bikes are emblazoned with two numbers. The first, 1,274, is the number of days between his last race and his comeback. The second, 27.2, represents the number of people, in millions, who died from the disease during that time. Is Armstrong suggesting that there's some kind of causal link between him not riding his bike and people dying from cancer?
The ad also implies, disturbingly, that the cyclist's "critics"—and that includes everyone whothinks he's arrogant—are equivalent to cancer. It is apparently not enough for him to ride his bike and lead a positive campaign. He can't help but go after his detractors at the same time. And you thought Sarah Palin was divisive.