More often than not, athletes are the epitome of cool. Talented. Fit. Rich. Many are also charming, funny, fashionable.
We yearn to know them, to party with them, to be like them.
But every now and then, an athlete throws someone under the bus, violates a sacred man code or pulls some other sort of major act of uncoolness; and, one of our idols topples from his or her pedestal.
Click on to see the lamest things that athletes do.
Do athletes think we even take note of these of these silly promises?
Apparently so. One of the more recent flagrant displays of such lameness was Carolina Panther center Ryan Kalil's full-page ad in the Charlotte Observer. The sappy message ends by guaranteeing the Panthers will win Super Bowl XLVII.
Perhaps a less lofty guarantee—something like a promise to win five regular season games—might have been wiser. Though even that is going to be a challenge for this year's squad.
Wes Anderson doesn't wear hoodies. Jason Mraz never sports a muscle tee. You'll see no Nike swoosh on the wardrobe of Michael Cera.
Why? They're all scrawny. They're arty. They're cool nerds.
You jocks, you just don't fit the mold. It's not your lot in life to make Urkel glasses look hip.
Please, keep your head fedora-free, keep your eye wear thin-framed. Don't let your jeans get too skinny. And, for the love of God, never grow a handlebar mustache.
A nickname is something you earn, Chad Johnson. It's something other people give to you out of respect and friendship, Ron Artest. When you give yourself a nickname, Terrell Owens, you become something of a joke. And end up playing for, oh, maybe the Indoor Football League or something along those lines.
Many athletes hunger for attention. It's not enough to be a sports star. They want to be athlete-actor-announcer-model-rapper-comedian-weatherman-veterinarians.
While a select few may add a few hyphens to their titles, most just make fools of themselves in the attempt.
Check out the video to see Ron Artest's comedy belly flop.
Though this falls under the multi-hyphenate-wannabe umbrella, it warrants its own slide. Too many athletes out there fancy themselves masters of rhyme and rhythm.
Athletes, there is no faster way to have your cool badges torn from your lapels than to put out a bad rap.
All part of the game, some argue. But come on, these players are trying to win championship rings, not Oscar statues.
Joe Batterman writes in his plea on change.org, "As the game is currently officiated, those who play fairly are the ones being penalized. There's no incentive not to flop, and that has to change."
And it looks like change is on the way. The NBA recently released a video that outlines their flopping penalty and how it will be enforced.
You had a good career. Most of it with a single team. You're getting old. You just finished a decent season, making the playoffs or even the big show. Now it's time to make a graceful exit.
There's an old public relations adage: "Arrive late, leave early." And another: "Always leave them wanting more."
If you don't heed that advice, you risk becoming tiresome, annoying and, sexting scandals aside, even a bit creepy.
Remember those millions you make exist because people watch you play. You want to move to another franchise, you have that right. Just do it in a thoughtful way. Be gracious. Be humble. Be up front.
Stay off the juice!
Steroid usage is dishonest. It's unsportsmanlike. It jeopardizes individual and team reputations.
(Oh, and it can shrivel up your 'nads.)
Hey, you're famous, you're worshiped. Hotties are slipping their numbers in your hand faster than you can stuff them in your pocket. I get it. Enjoy. But stay single while you do it.
Once you settle down, you need to...well, settle down.
Kidnapping the other team's goat mascot? Sure, all in good fun. Just be sure Billy has some decent grass to chew on and isn't locked up in some rusty cage.
But maiming another team's good luck critter? Get your head checked, friend.
In the video, Luis Moreno of a Colombian club soccer team punts the opposing team's lucky owl after it accidentally wound up on the field.
The hardworking, over-heated, fine citizenry that inhabit the giant felt tigers, sharks and, yes, even the sausages, deserve nothing but respect from the athletes they help support.
Randall Simon's sausage clubbing is perhaps the most famous case of lame athlete behavior in this category.
This is never acceptable, but all the more lame when the insulting athlete isn't even speaking of someone in his or her own sport.
It is petty and rude, and just makes the utterer seem like an ignorant attention-craving jerk.
Really? So the Lord wanted you to make the Superbowl, Kurt?
Guess the Lord didn't tune in for the Big Show two weeks later?
Or maybe He did, only He liked Big Ben a little better.
Come on athletes, this has been a rule since the days of mischief on the elementary school playground. Never, never rat out a teammate. Especially when there is zero chance it'll get you out of any trouble.
Guess Kobe didn't go to an ordinary elementary school. Guess he never saw Goodfellas.
In 2003 when Kobe was questioned by detectives in Eagle, Colorado regarding his dealings with a certain woman, Bryant allegedly said "he should have done what Shaq does...that Shaq would pay his women not to say anything" and already had paid up to $1 million "for situations like this."
That statement got a lot of press, and undoubtedly Shaq's wife took note.
Years later, Shaq rapped out his ire in a NYC night club: "I'm a horse, Kobe ratted me out, that's why I'm getting divorced."
You've got a deluge of adrenaline surging through your blood vessels. Endorphins are bubbling out your ears and your nostrils.
You just scored and the world needs reminding of your prowess.
IN YOUR FACE, CAMERAMAN.
Wow, you are awesome.
A tasteful, original, correctly-timed celebration invigorates the fans, the team and may even buy the celebrator immortality on YouTube. Imagine that. Being cool FOREVER.
But that back flip/bird dance/fist pump/shuffle/moonwalk may very well haunt you if it's done before the ball stops circling the rim, or the puck crosses the line or the final buzzer sounds.
You're still likely to end up immortalized on YouTube. Just not the way you hoped.
If you're an athlete and you're pissed—really pissed—fans will likely understand if you don't want to offer a hand to help an opposing player up. Just walking away—it's a little cold, but at times the best choice.
But THIS. This helping hand psych out, this iciest of gestures, is found only at the bottom of the deepest, darkest craters of the fourth moon of Planet Lame.
Athletes are in the sport to win. But losses do come. Sure, they sting. Take them gracefully though, and fans come along for the ride. Defeat is something we can all relate to. Lesson learned. Experienced gained. There's another game, another season, another bout, another victory to strive for.
But those that bemoan their losses, that stew and seethe and lash out, well, historically their careers are short. And rightly so.
In the above video, boxer James Butler sucker punches Richard Grant after losing to him by decision in a 2001 bout.
Butler was charged and convicted of aggravated assault. He spent four months at Riker's Island Detention Facility.
Later he was convicted of murdering a sports writer and was sentenced to 30 years in prison.