Comedian Lewis Black may be the world's most pissed off optimist.As he says in his best-selling book, "Nothing's Sacred," and nothing is: not religion, not politics, not Lance Armstrong's tush."What the hell is wrong with Lance Armstrong?" Black asks with great enthusiasm.By the time you read this, Armstrong will have knelt in Oprah Winfrey's confessional to spill his guts and whatever was in those syringes trainers kept sticking in his butt."Everybody he knows says he was doping," Black told Jon Stewart on The Daily Show."Everybody he rode with. Everybody he slept with. Everybody who ever stuck a needle in his tank," Black said.Armstrong claims he's tired of fighting the accusations, and let's not forget how his perspective might change in the face of 1,000 pages of evidence released by the United States Anti-Doping Agency, including sworn statements from at least 20 teammates.Armstrong says fighting the allegations was sucking the life out of him."You win a 2,000 mile bike race seven years in a row and going to court once a month is too much work?!?" Black said. "This is a guy who had cancer in his lungs, his brain, his testicles and he's getting twice the oxygen out of every breath? The question shouldn't be if he was doping, the question should be, 'Why aren't all of us doping?""I get winded lighting a cigarette," Black said.Still ranting after all these yearsBlack is now 64. He points out that Don Rickles is still working and George Burns and Groucho Marx worked into their 80s and 90s. He sees no reason to slow down or quiet down, he said.Black suffers idiots loudly and material is everywhere, he says. He was colicky as a baby, and may still be.Black was born in Washington D.C., from whence he gleans so much material. The recent fiscal cliff debacle captured his attention, as has the next game of chicken over the debt ceiling.It's not difficult to understand why our United States Congress has a lower approval rating than head lice or the nation of France.He's great at this because he works at it. He's also lucky, he says, but both he and luck live at the intersection of preparation and opportunity."There's a lot of bull shit luck involved," Black said. "We're overrun with bull shit businessmen who think they created their own success. They didn't."These days he writes, tours, travels with friends and runs a comedy festival at his alma matre, the University of North Carolina, where they teach sketch comedy, a few seminars, and all kinds of comedic stuff.He says he loves the theater and earned degrees from the University of North Carolina where he cut his comedy teeth, and Yale Drama School. He even did a stint in Colorado as a theater owner.He found his comedic voice at the playwright-in-residence in New York City's West Bank Caf's Downstairs Theatre Bar, where he emceed every show. Nothing improves your stage presence like being on stage, he said.Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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