Ryan Lochte is about one more bad cameo away from losing my respect. And he's not alone in the pool.
We've seen amazing American Olympians come back from London to unparalleled fame and fortune.
Endorsement deals, laying awkwardly in a bathtub for Louis Vuitton (Michael Phelps), Wheaties, an amazing internship at Colbert.
But for some reason, our most celebrated athletes seem to want to take their newfound fame into the world of bland entertainment.
The Fab Five, an amazing quintet of women gymnasts, received the respect and recognition with gold medals as a result of lifelong practice and years away from their families training for the Olympics. They've trained their bodies to perform in a way that none of us can (well, very, very few, five to be exact).
This was the first year Twitter was an active force in the Olympics, and these young girls were excited by their medals, but more excited by tweets from Lady Gaga. I think we have it backwards.
Everyone is in awe of these athletes because of their athletic prowess. We watch the Olympics because it makes us feel great about America and also incredibly lazy. We realize what separates a gym goer from a collegiate athlete from an Olympian.
Gabby Douglas, Ryan Lochte, our new celebrities, are being celebrated for achieving a level of athleticism that less than .0001 percent of the population will come close to. The Olympics were an incredibly display, and these athletes deserve all of the recognition and praise for representing our country.
And then they want to do Dancing With the Stars.
In case you haven't turned on a television of recent, Ryan Lochte is everywhere. Taking off his clothes on Fashion Police, sitting in a fountain with Joan Rivers. Walking red carpets. Seeing screaming girls and one night stand potentials. But we hold him and other fantastic American Olympians to a higher honor than celebrities with reality television shows. Why is their athleticism not celebrity enough? Ryan wants to do more acting. Gabby wants to get into acting. You have trained your bodies for your entire lives to be on reality television?
I beg of you, stay on the pedestal. The olympic podium. It's far higher than any actor, or musician, at least for some of us. We like you doing flips, dives, breaststroke. Things NONE of us could ever do. Anyone can do reality television.
I've already seen Lochte in a 90210 cameo. I'm sure many athletes will follow suit.
But we are celebrating you for something that comes once in a blue moon (really, once every four years isn't quite often). Leave the movies to the actors, leave the reality television to Guiliana Rancic and the Real Housewives.
I guarantee you're better at your sport than any of us will ever be. And that is fame enough.