ILS 604-70 Advanced Reference
Pamela R. Dennis
March 28, 2003
Dialog Lab Assignment
This was my first time to use Dialog, so I had to learn to use the program as well as find the answers. I tried the exercises in both Dialog Classic and using DIALINDEX and got different results, so I am including answers and search strategies from both. Here are the answers I found and the strategies in reaching these answers:
- When was the first night game played at Wrigley Field?
Answer: The first night game played in Wrigley Field was on August 9, 1988, against the New York Mets. Controversy arose due to a commemorative medal that was produced saying that the first game was on August 8. However, Chicagoland Processing Corporation admitted to selling medals with the wrong date (37,000 of them!), and Judge Brian Duff ruled on June 9, 1989, in U.S. District Court, that the official night was August 9, and this was verified by the Major League Baseball Commissioners Office.
Strategy: This question was very straightforward, and I received the same answer in DIALINDEX as in straight Dialog Classic. Using Dialog Classic, my two concepts were (1) first night game and (2) Wrigley Field. By using the proximity connector (w), I connected each of the terms and used the logical operator and to connect the two concepts. Therefore the query was as follows: select first(w)night(w)game(w) and wrigley(w)field. Since this was a sports-related question, I chose a newswire service that dealt with publicity - PR Newswire (813) and chose to use the years 1987-1999, already having some knowledge that that would be the time period involved.
The following article was the first of three results that occurred:
CHICAGO NUMISMATIC FOUNDATION: FIRST NIGHT GAME IN WRIGLEY FIELD ANNIVERSARY
AUG. 8 OR AUG. 9
DATE: August 7, 1989 13:49 E.T. WORD COUNT: 351
CHICAGO, Aug. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Recently Chicagoland Processing
Corporation, maker of the first night game Aug. 8, 1988 commemorative
medal, filed a lawsuit in federal court charging Chicago Numismatic
Foundation, the maker of the first official night game Aug. 9, 1988
commemorative medal, with mail fraud and false advertising, Chicago
Numismatic Foundation announced today.
The case came before U.S. District Court Judge Brian Duff on June 9, 1989. During the trial, Chicago Numismatic Foundation presented
evidence from the Illinois Attorney General's office that Major League
Baseball Commissioner's Office was contacted and that their official
position was that the first night game played in Wrigley Field was on
8/9/88 against the New York Mets. Further evidence showed that
Unlimited Promotions and Sports Advertisement, who was marketing the
8/8/88 medal for Chicagoland Processing Corporation, was being
investigated for mail fraud and false advertising. John Obie, president of Chicagoland Processing Corporation admitted to selling 37,000 of the first night game medal with the wrong date.
Judge Brian Duff ruled that the court has no grounds for preventing
Chicago Numismatic Foundation from advertising or selling their first
official night game commemorative medal 8/9/88.
So, if you feel that you have been taken when you purchased the
first night game 8/8/88 medal and would like a refund, contact Gladys
Hoylman of the Illinois Attorney General Office at 312-917-3740. If you would like the First Official Night Game 8/9/88 commemorative medal, contact the Chicago Numismatic Foundation at 312-489-5559.
The Chicago Numismatic Foundation has donated the first (No. 00001), First Official Night Game Aug. 9, 1988 Commemorative Medal to the Grant A Wish Foundation to help raise funds for needy children, this medal will be auctioned off sometime in November. To find out how you can bid on this museum quality medal, call Ann Blair of the Grant A Wish Foundation at 312-915-0020. Also the Chicago Numismatic Foundation is donating $1 from the sale of each medal to the Grant A Wish Foundation.
CONTACT: Fred White of Chicago Numismatic Foundation,
COMPANY NAME: CHICAGOLAND PROCESSING CORPORATION; CHICAGO NUMISMATIC
PRODUCT: HOUSEHOLD, CONSUMER, COSMETICS (HOU)
STATE: ILLINOIS (IL)
SECTION HEADING: NATIONAL; SPORTS
Using DIALINDEX, my search strategy was as follows:
a. I chose the category Reference.
b. Then I chose People, Places, and Events
c. Then Leisure and Entertainment
d. Then Full Text Magazines
e. Query: (Wrigley Field) and first
f. Limited by years 1980-2003
g. Results: 2 (this was the second)
h. #04062154 Supplier Number: 07495902 Chicago Numismatic Foundation: first night game in Wrigley Field anniversary Aug. 8 or Aug.9 (PR Newswire, 0807NY056) August 7, 1989
2. Who is credited with having invented Rock and Roll?
Answer: I spent more time on this question than any of the others. I learned in History of Rock and Roll during my doctorate that Bill Haley (Shake, Rattle and Roll and Rock Around the Clock) is considered the inventor of Rock and Roll. However, it appears that African Americans invented rock and roll. This makes sense, since all articles about Bill Haley state that his hits were reworkings of blues numbers [see #06365687, Supplier Number: 88603582 Birth of the Cool (creation of rock music and influence of Bill Haley] written by blacks. Therefore, according to Ebony Magazine (July 2001), the answer to the question is that African Americans (blacks) are credited with inventing Rock and Roll from blues music. The Rolling Stone article using Dialog Classic went one step farther in identifying a particular person (Deborah Chessler), a Jewish woman, who worked with five African-American men who created rhythm & blues music which was considered the beginning of rock and roll.
Strategy: This question was much harder. As a musician myself, I was disappointed that there were no music databases included. However, with this being a popular style of music, I surmised that a general database would probably include the information I needed. Therefore, I chose Readers Guide Abstracts Full Text (141) (published by H.W. Wilson), including the years 1983-2003.
My concepts were (1) rock and roll and (1) creator or inventor. The problem with the first concept is that it contains a logical operator and it becomes a stop word in most database lists. Therefore, using the proximity connector (n) allowed me to find the words next to each other without having to use the word and. I also realized that I needed to find creator or creation or created, so I used question marks to allow for truncated letters. Creat?? limited the search considerably, but I added that set to the word beginning and then to invent?? (invent or inventor) as follows:
Set Items Description
S1 88 ROCK(N)ROLL AND CREAT??
S2 27 BEGINNING AND S1
S3 9 INVENT?? AND S2
I received the following result:
DIALOG(R)File 141:Readers Guide
(c) 2003 The HW Wilson Co. All rts. reserv.
02542575 H.W. WILSON RECORD NUMBER: BRGA93042575
Is this the woman who invented rock & roll? The Deborah Chessler story.
Rolling Stone (Roll Stone) (June 24 '93) p. 41+
DOCUMENT TYPE: Biography Individual biography
SPECIAL FEATURES: il pors ISSN: 0035-791X
COUNTRY OF PUBLICATION: United States
RECORD TYPE: Abstract RECORD STATUS: New record
ABSTRACT: In the late 1940s in Baltimore, a young Jewish woman named
Deborah Chessler and 5 black men in a doo-wop group called the Orioles
helped create rhythm & blues music, the beginning of rock & roll. The
Orioles, led by the delicate tenor of Sonny Til, were called the
Vibranaires when Chessler, a struggling songwriter and a sales clerk,
became their manager. The group, rechristened the Orioles, went on to
inspire singers from all over the U.S., among them Elvis Presley, Clyde
McPhatter and the Drifters, and Lou Reed. They sang Chessler's songs,
including the bottomless "Too Soon to Know." Chessler guided the Orioles' career for 6 years in an utterly segregated America. In 1954, just as Elvis hit, Chessler went back to being a sales clerk, and today, at 70, she lives with her husband near Miami. The careers of Chessler and the Orioles are traced.
Rock music--History; Doo-wop music--History
COMPANY NAME: Orioles (Musical group)
NAMED PERSONS: Chessler, Deborah,--1923-
In DIALINDEX, I found a different list of articles. This was my search strategy:
- I chose the category Reference.
- Then I chose People, Places, and Events
- Then Leisure and Entertainment
- Then Full Text Magazines
- Query: Words in title (rock and roll)
Entire text (creator)
- Limit by years 1996-2003
- Results: 7 (this was the second)
#06112759 Supplier Number: 76285243 Kevin Chappell, How Blacks Invented Rock and Roll, Ebony 56 (July 2001), 145
The article is as follows:
4/9/2 (Item 2 from file: 47)
06112759 Supplier Number: 76285243 (THIS IS THE FULL TEXT )
How Blacks Invented Rock and Roll.
Ebony , 56 , 9 , 145
July , 2001
Language: English Record Type: Fulltext
Word Count: 1525 Line Count: 00113
Before Elvis Presley sang "Hound Dog," Big Mama Thornton had house-trained that canine. Before Bill Haley & the Comets popularized "Shake, Rattle & Roll," Big Joe Turner had done all three. The Crewcuts' "Sh-Boom" was originally sung by the Chords, and The Beatles' "Roll Over Beethoven" was rocked by Chuck Berry long before the boys from Liverpool "invaded" America.
It continues to be the biggest lie in the music industry--that Whites
created rock `n' roll. From history books to rock-oriented cafes, from the pretentious Graceland mansion to the corner record store, White rock `n' roll artists have been immortalized and credited with creating the multibillion-dollar rock music industry.
Lost is the reality that rock `n' roll was actually born out of the belly of Black blues music and raised by Black artists in the 1950s in smoke-filled clubs along Beale Street in Memphis, 47th Street in Chicago and 125th Street in Harlem. Only years later, when White teenagers began openly digging the electric guitars and the pounding drum beats that Black artists were playing--a sound their parents had disparagingly labeled "race" and "rhythm and blues" music--did White disc jockey Alan Freed re-name it "rock `n' roll," and White artists entered the lucrative field without stigma.
And when they did, they didn't revolutionize the music. Lacking
creativity, many White artists "covered" songs Blacks had written years
earlier and made it big by copying the performing styles, dances and dress of Black artists like Little Richard, who even today can't believe how he and other Black artists were ripped off.
"They want to call me the `Black Liberace,'" he says. "I was doing this before Liberace knew what was going on. I am the originator, the creator, the architect. The blues had a baby and they named it rock `n' roll. There was no rock `n' roll until I came along. Liberace copied me, and he made the millions of dollars. The system wasn't fair then, and it's not fair now."
Look no further than Presley's "Hound Dog" to see how White artists exploited the creations of Black musicians. Disc jockeys at White radio stations played the songs of Elvis, the Beatles and others as if they were originals. As a result, songs like Pat Boone's version of"Tutti-Frutti" became a hit, instead of Little Richard's original, and Bill Haley's cover of the first rock `n' roll song, "Rocket 88," became just as popular as the original Jackie Brenston and the Ike Turner band.
Thus is it safe to say that Graceland was built off the backs of
Black artists and that the "British Invasion" only served to prove that
White America would pay for music that had been taken from its backyard, shipped overseas, watered down, whitewashed and sent back to the States by messengers with funny accents? Tim Moore, communications director for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, says it's sad but true. "The contribution of Black artists to rock `n' roll can't be overstated," he says. "The music of the Black Church and the music of the blues are the bedrock of what became known as rock `n' roll."
The rock `n' roll museum opened in 1996 with the goal of telling the truth about the roots of the rock music industry. The museum tells the history of rock music, of the segregation that was riding high during its heyday and how putting a White face on the music opened up acceptance of the music. Once White companies and radio stations saw the success of such performers as Elvis, many got behind the music and began to push White artists. "If there is any doubt that some of the early White artists, such as Elvis Presley, were influenced by Blacks, consider that Elvis used to go to all-night gospel sings in Memphis, where they would have Black quartets and choirs," Moore says. "That's how he developed his singing voice and style."
In the end, White artists made the money, and White America was
finally able to openly embrace and dance to the music, which they had long listened to on Black-formatted radio stations in the privacy of their homes. There was only a handful of White radio disc jockeys-Freed on his late-night Moondog Show on WJW in Cleveland was one--who dared to play songs by Black artists. For giving the real credit to Black artists, Freed was ridiculed by Whites and subjected to threats and harassment by the government.
While White America defied the facts and claimed rock `n' roll music as their own, White artists generally have never denied their infatuation and emulation of Black rock musicians. Throughout history, many White artists credited with helping to create rock `n' roll, and many of today's biggest rock stars, actually give the credit to Black artists. The following are a few of the quotes collected by the Rock and Roll Museum for its exhibit on early influences:
"When we were playing clubs, I'd say over half of what we did was
blues," said the late Jim Morrison of The Doors.
"When I took up guitar, I wanted to play like Chuck Berry more than anything in the world," said the late Jerry Garcia of The Grateful Dead.
The Rolling Stones were influenced so much by Muddy Waters that they named their band after his song "Rolling Stones."
"George Clinton influenced me so deeply that it is a part of me, like my kidney or my liver," says Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
If all this "doesn't prove Black artists created rock `n' roll, I
don't know what does," says Nelson George, author of The Death of Rhythm & Blues and a longtime music critic. "White artists have always admitted it. I mean, how could they not when it is so obvious?"
Little Richard agrees, but adds that it's time for White artists to pay more than respect to the Black creators of rock `n' roll. "Where's my money?" the legend asks. "In the '50s, they would go to a place and headline, singing our songs when they knew we should have been there making the money. Now the Rolling Stones are making $4 million for each concert. It's time to put up or shut up."
So far, no reparations have been offered to legendary Black rock
artists like Little Richard. During a 1972 visit to Johnson Publishing Co., Beatle John Lennon told Jet magazine that he wished his three musical idols--Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley and Little Richard--had done better financially. "It hurt my heart that they were not as big as they were in the 1950s," he said. "Berry is the greatest influence on earth. So is Bo Diddley, and so is Little Richard. There is not one White group on earth that hasn't got their music in them. And that's all I ever listened to. The only White person I ever listened to was Presley on his early music, and he was doing Black music."
Not much can be done now, George says, adding rock `n' roll wasn't the first time Whites capitalized by copying Black artists. Jazz and rap music are two recent examples. Even in the late 1930s, "boogie fever" was started by Blacks in juke joints in the North. Kansas City bluesman Joe Turner and pianist Pete Johnson helped to create the music that would sweep the nation until the early 1950s. After the two rocked Carnegie Hall in 1938 and ushered in boogie to mainstream White audiences, White artists followed with such songs as the "Hillbilly Boogie" by the Delmore Brothers and "Shotgun Boogie" by Tennessee Ernie Ford.
It wasn't until Blacks got out of swing and into this new rock thing that Whites followed. And it wasn't long before Blacks dropped the rock `n' roll of Little Richard, Chuck Berry and Fats Domino in favor of the soul music of Sam Cooke, Otis Redding and Motown. "We create music, get tired of it and move on," Moore says. "I think what happened in the 1960s, with the advent of the Civil Rights Movement, Blacks began to look down on blues as being too passive and rock `n' roll as being too happy. So we moved on to a more soulful music, and left Whites with rock music and the ability to define it as they pleased."
Blacks always want to create something new, says Little Richard.
"That's fine. I can understand that," he says. "But I blame Blacks for
forgetting the music of the past. You can move on, but you can't forget. We have to remember our history. We can never forget that Blacks started it all."
COPYRIGHT 2001 Johnson Publishing Co.
Descriptors: Rock music--History; African Americans--Art
Geographic Codes: 1USA United States
File Segment: MI File 47
3. Where does San Andreas Fault run out to sea?
Answer: According to Peter Fish (June 1995), the San Andreas Fault is in California and is over 800 miles long. Its beginning is at the Pacific Ocean on the California coast at Alder Creek, just north of Point Arena in Mendocino County. The Geological Society of America article states that Point Reyes National Seashore was created by the extension of the fault into the Pacific Ocean. Upon consulting a map, these two points are within about 50 miles of each other, both in Mendocino County.
Strategy: This question required information on Geology, so I chose one of the three databases found in the Blue Sheets related to geology - GeoRef (89). This database covered the years 1785-2003 and was copyrighted by the American Geological Institute.
The two concepts were (1) San Andreas Fault and (2) sea. Therefore, I created a set of San Andreas Fault using proximity connectors to keep the words together. However, just using those two concepts resulted in 410 entries, too many to read. Realizing that I needed to find the location of a place where the fault ran out to sea, I used the word location with the first set and reduced the count considerably. Then I used those two sets and added ocean or sea to cut the items down to 7 as follows:
Set Items Description
S1 5233 SAN(W)ANDREAS(W)FAULT
S2 410 S1 AND (OCEAN OR SEA)
S3 79 S1 AND LOCATION
S4 7 S3 AND (OCEAN OR SEA)
The resulting abstract was as follows:
(c) 2003 American Geological Institute. All rts. reserv.
02590876 GEOREF NO.: 03-019251
TITLE: Point Reyes National Seashore; a creation of the San Andreas Fault and coastal uplift
AUTHOR(S): Grove, Karen
CORPORATE SOURCE: San Francisco State University, Department of
Geosciences, San Francisco, CA, United States
MONOGRAPH TITLE: Geological Society of America, Cordilleran Section, 98th annual meeting
CONFERENCE TITLE: Geological Society of America, Cordilleran Section, 98th annual meeting
CONFERENCE LOCATION: Corvallis, OR, United States,
CONFERENCE DATE: May 13-15, 2002
PUBLISHER: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States SOURCE: Abstracts with Programs - Geological Society of America vol. 34 no. 5; p. 21
COUNTRY OF PUBLICATION: United States
CODEN: GAAPBC ISSN: 0016-7592
DOCUMENT TYPE: Abstract; Serial; Conference document
BIBLIOGRAPHIC LEVEL: Analytic
ABSTRACT: The Point Reyes National Seashore is located about one hour north of San Francisco and is a popular destination for locals and tourists. The main attraction of this national park is the Point Reyes Peninsula, which is bounded on its eastern edge by the San Andreas fault (SAF), and along its other edges by the Pacific Ocean. The peninsula is part of the Salinian terrane, which has been transported at least 450 km northwest of its original location by motion along the SAF. During the Quaternary Period, the peninsula has been created by uplift and folding into a broad syncline. The western limb is a headland that juts far into the ocean and that is the best place to view whales without getting on a boat. The eastern limb is an extensive ridge with many well-used trails and backpacking camps. A landslide zone creates small lakes for swimming. The low-lying hinge area between the two fold limbs is an estero where oysters are farmed and kayakers paddle. The peninsula has many km of beach, ranging from northwest-facing beaches popular with surfers to south-facing beaches popular with families. Two outdoor exhibits explain aspects of the peninsula's geology. At the visitors center, an Earthquake Trail was created by Tim Hall in the 1970s. Although very basic and in need of updating, it is highly rated by the public because of its clarity and simplicity. At the western headland of the peninsula, signs explain an exquisite example of Paleocene submarine sediment-gravity-flow deposits. We plan to work with park personnel to create more exhibits about the park's geologic origins. The most effective communications are clear images and a simple message. We hope to develop visualizations of the peninsula uplifting and slipping northwestward through time.
Three-dimensional visualizations using digital elevation models and GIS software capture the attention of the general public.
COORDINATES: Latitude: N375900 ; N375900 ; Longitude: W1230100 ; W1230100
DESCRIPTORS: California; education; educational resources; exhibits;
geomorphology; landform evolution; Marin County California; national
parks; Point Reyes; Point Reyes National Seashore; public lands; San
Andreas Fault; shore features; shorelines; United States
SECTION HEADINGS: 23 (Geomorphology);
GEOREF UPDATE: 200307
GeoRef, Copyright 2003, American Geological Institute. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Using DIALINDEX, I used the following search strategy:
a. First, I looked at the Science categories but found most of them to be related to research and development.
b. I chose the category Reference again.
c. Then I chose People, Places, and Events
d. Then Entertainment and Travel
e. Then Full Text Magazines
f. Query: Words in title (San Andreas Fault)
Entire text (sea)
g. Limit by years 1994-2003
h. Results: 2 (this was the second)
i. #04305972 Supplier Number: 17149321 Peter Fish, Its our fault. Sunset 194 (June 1995), 80-88.
Since the answer was not in the abstract, I have included the entire article as follows:
4/9/2 (Item 2 from file: 47)
04305972 Supplier Number: 17149321 (THIS IS THE FULL TEXT )
It's our fault. (San Andreas Fault in California)
Sunset , v194 , n6 , p80(8)
June , 1995
Language: English Record Type: Fulltext; Abstract
Word Count: 3177 Line Count: 00241
Abstract: The San Andreas Fault is a geological feature that has extensive social, psychological, cultural, ecological and physical impacts on the state of California and its residents. The 800-mile fault runs along the state coastline and celebrates its 100th year as a major geological agent in 1995.
Join us as we follow the San Andreas Fault, tracing its remarkable impact on California . . . and on the people who study it, live on it, and even laugh at it
Over 800 miles long, it slices through California from the Mendocino coast to the desert near the Salton Sea. It runs beneath beaches and mountains, suburbs and cattle ranches, slides past a Franciscan mission and a memorial to James Dean.
Some people might call the San Andreas California's collective bad
dream. Certainly no geologic feature on earth has insinuated itself into so many subconscious minds. When the ground begins to tremble, lamps to swing, Californians steady themselves in doorways and think, is this it?
But if the San Andreas has made California dangerous, it has also made it beautiful. And rich. Says U.S. Geological Survey seismologist Allan Lindh, "California would not be here - or it would be here but it would not be someplace we would be - without the San Andreas."
This year marks the great fault's 100th birthday as a recognized agent of geological change. Follow it and you'll be tracing one of the most remarkable features on earth through a cross-section of the Golden State at its loveliest and most surprising.
ALDER CREEK TO POINT REYES
The San Andreas first emerges from the Pacific to touch the California coast at Alder Creek, a few miles north of Point Arena in Mendocino County. The setting is pretty but not portentous. Sheep graze. Seagulls squawk. The most obvious evidence of the fault's presence is a small interpretive sign put up by the rangers at Manchester State Beach.
This lack of obvious drama typifies the San Andreas. The mountains it raises and the valleys it carves are readily apparent. But for anyone but a geologist, the fault itself can be maddeningly hard to find, much less understand.
What is the San Andreas Fault? Seismologists now regard it as the
place where two continental plates collide. The portion of California east of the fault lies on the North American plate. The portion to the west lies on the Pacific. The two plates grind against each other, the Pacific plate sliding northwestward relative to the North American at a rate of a little over an inch a year. Where they meet is the San Andreas fault zone, which runs from 1/3 to 2/3 mile wide and more than 12 miles deep. (What seismologists call the San Andreas fault system takes in more terrain, as it includes faults that branch off from the San Andreas such as the Hayward in the San Francisco Bay Area and the San Jacinto in Southern California.)
Head south from Alder Creek and State Highway 1 will take you through some of California's most expansive shoreline scenery. But the fault itself stays just a bit inland before meeting the coast again south of Fort Ross (where, because of winter storm damage, you'll have to detour on Meyers Grade and Timber Cove roads). It is not until you hit Bodega Bay that you get a really good look at what the fault can do. As you drive along State 1, you're driving on the North American plate. Look out to the west and you'll see Bodega Head, on the Pacific plate. Rocks on the mainland are mainly Franciscan formation sandstone; Bodega Head is granite, slid here as the Pacific plate moved northwest. Between them runs the San Andreas: it cuts right across the sandspit that links Bodega Head to the mainland.
Marin County probably gives Northern California the clearest look at the fault's workings. As the two continental plates grind together, rocks caught between them in the fault zone are ground up, too. As a result they erode more easily. That's why much of the San Andreas's path is marked by long, narrow valleys called rift valleys. Tomales Bay is a flooded rift valley; Bear Valley between Olema and Bolinas shows this aspect of the fault in action as well.
The place of Point Reyes in California quake lore is well marked. In Olema, you'll find a small clothing store called The Epicenter, and not far away, Point Reyes National Seashore has established its Earthquake Trail. The day we visited, the ranger was telling her contingent of visitors, "I think of earthquakes like a chiropractor would. Every once in a while the earth gets a kink in its back. And it cracks it, just the way you would."
Some kink. Some crack. Point Reyes was the likely center of the
greatest quake in California's recorded history.
To say that the Pacific and North American plates are moving past each other at an average of more than an inch a year is to oversimplify. The movement is seldom average, gradual, or smooth. Rocks on both sides of the fault get stuck. Then they get unstuck. That is what happened at 5:13 on the morning of April 18, 1906.
While they can't be positive, seismologists suspect that somewhere
beneath Point Reyes lay the 1906 quake's hypocenter - the point on the
fault that first ruptures. (A quake's epicenter, in contrast, is the spot on the earth's surface directly above the hypocenter.) But the hypocenter indicates only where a quake starts. The mark of a truly big earthquake is that the rupture zone tears along a great length of the fault. In the 1906 quake, seismologists believe the San Andreas ruptured nearly 300 miles, from San Juan Bautista to beneath the ocean off Cape Mendocino. At Point Reyes, fences were pulled apart as the western portion of the peninsula slid 20 feet to the north. (The story that a cow was swallowed up by the rending of the earth was, apparently, just a dairy farmer's practical joke.) The most nightmarish damage was reserved for San Francisco. "The street beds heaved in frightful fashion," wrote a San Francisco Examiner reporter who had been walking on Larkin Street. "The earth rocked and then came the blow that wrecked San Francisco from the bay shore to the Ocean Beach and from the Golden Gate to the end of the peninsula."
ON THE PENINSULA: "A REMARKABLY STRAIGHT FAULT"
The fault that so devastated San Francisco never quite enters the city limits. After dipping into the Pacific at Bolinas, it runs just outside the Golden Gate before emerging on dry land at Mussel Rock in Daly City.
A little to the south lies the spot where the San Andreas was first recognized. In 1895, a young University of California geologist named Andrew Lawson was tramping around the San Francisco Peninsula. He noted that the Crystal Springs and San Andreas valleys had been shaped by "a remarkably straight fault," then named the feature after the more northerly of the two valleys. Today, drivers on Interstate 280 and hikers on the Crystal Springs Trail get a good view of the geology that caught Lawson's eye.
Most of us tend to think of the San Andreas as one long unbroken line scored across the crust of the earth. It isn't. It divides into fault segments, each subject to varying amounts of stress. One segment may be unlikely to unleash a major quake, while the segment above or below it is overdue.
The San Francisco Peninsula's fault segment runs near populated cities and suburbs. Scientists have devoted a fair amount of energy to trying to determine whether this segment is primed for a major quake. A theory called "elastic rebound" posits that a really big earthquake will use up most of the energy stored in a fault for quite a while. But gradually the energy builds back up. On the Peninsula, the fault last moved big-time in 1906. Is it ready to move again? Looking at quake records from the 19th century, USGS seismologist Allan Lindh suspects so. The fault ruptured with two moderate quakes, one in 1836 and one in 1868. Lindh suspects that after 90 years of quiet, the fault may be returning to this pattern: "The quake machine is turned back on."
Adding to these suspicions was the 1989 Loma Prieta quake. Centered beneath Forest of Nisene Marks State Park in the Santa Cruz Mountains, the 7.1 temblor gave seismologists some surprises. Some say it did not occur on the main portion of the San Andreas, but on a then-unknown branch fault. The quake's hypocenter was unusually deep, about 11 miles, while most Northern California quakes occur at 6 to 9 miles. A short hike along the park's Epicenter Trail will take you through second-growth redwood groves to the spot where the quake began, letting you marvel that so much geological violence could begin in a setting so serene.
FROM SAN JUAN BAUTISTA TO THE QUAKE CAPITAL
Cutting southeast from the Santa Cruz Mountains, the fault crosses
beneath U.S. 101, then forms the northern boundary of San Juan Bautista. This pretty little mission town seems to have made its peace with the fault. The USGS and the chamber of commerce have set up a seismograph in the shadow of Mission San Juan Bautista. Not far away, Edith Franz serves homemade soups and salads at her FaultLine restaurant, expressing no fears of the unruly neighbor that can be glimpsed from her patio: "I love to see Mother Nature at work."
South of San Juan Bautista, the motorcycle riders at Hollister Hills State Recreational Vehicle Area seem intent on drowning out the fault with sheer horsepower. An "Earthquake Tour" guide shows how the San Andreas bisects the area, enabling those motorcycle riders to roar from North American to Pacific plate and back.
In about 40 miles, you come to Pinnacles National Monument. Although these eroded rock spires don't lie directly on the San Andreas, they provide a good example of what the fault can do. The San Andreas is a strike-slip fault: it separates rocks that are traveling horizontally past each other. This phenomenon was first recognized in the 1950s, when geologist Thomas Dibblee (see the October 1994 Sunset) noted a curious fact. Rocks on the west side of the San Andreas matched rocks that lay on the east side - hundreds of miles to the south. In the case of the Pinnacles, geologists now believe they were once attached to a rock formation called the Neenach Volcanics in Antelope Valley, 200 miles to the southeast.
About 110 miles southeast of San Juan Bautista, you and the fault come to the quiet ranch town of Parkfield. (But it's a straight line for you only if you like rough dirt roads. If not, detour, taking State 198 to U.S. 101, then cut back east on State 46.) Despite the quiet, you'll see that something is up. "Be Here When It Happens," reads the sign on the water tower over the Parkfield Inn and Cafe. Step inside the cafe and you'll spot newspaper and magazine clippings from around the world tacked up on the walls. One from an Italian magazine reads "Benvenuti a Parkfield la capitale di Terremoti." Welcome to Parkfield - the earthquake capital.
Quake capital it is. At Parkfield the San Andreas doesn't lock in
place for long. Instead, it slips frequently, producing earthquakes (not more than 7.0 on the Richter scale) about once every 22 years. This clocklike regularity lured Allan Lindh and other USGS seismologists here, to see if they could predict Parkfield's next temblor.
The seismologists set up lasers to monitor changes in the earth's
crust; they set up seismometers to measure the slightest tremor. Then they climbed out on a limb: Parkfield had a 95 percent chance of experiencing a 6.0 quake by the end of 1993. When in November of that year a series of small quakes signaled something bigger might be afoot, they climbed out farther: a 6.0 quake, they predicted, would strike within three days.
Cattleman and Parkfield Inn owner Jack Varian recalls the ensuing
media circus. "We had every major and minor network here. Everybody in town got interviewed."
But the promised temblor did not arrive on time. And when, last
December 20, a quake did finally strike Parkfield, it was smaller and on a different portion of the fault than expected. Says Lindh, "Parkfield looked like a sure bet. We went to do perfect geology, but the gods at Olympus took offense at our hubris and smote us mightily."
Even so, research done (and still being done) at Parkfield has
increased our understanding of the San Andreas. And it has had some side benefits. Jack Varian's Parkfield Inn draws geologists and amateur quake buffs from around the world. Varian himself enjoys a new appreciation for his land. "We have the most beautiful rocks here," he says. "Now when I go round up the cattle I find myself looking at the ground."
CARRIZO PLAIN: WHERE TO SEE IT ALL
The fault runs due south from Parkfield. You follow it on Cholame
Road, then jog briefly west on State 46 to Cholame, where you'll see the chrome memorial to film idol James Dean, killed here in a 1955 collision. Then follow winding Bitterwater Road south to State 58; turn east to California Valley and south again on Soda Lake Road.
You're on the Carrizo Plain. Brown and forbidding, it comes to life for only a couple of months in spring, when its vernal pools bloom. But the sparseness of vegetation that makes the Carrizo so austere also makes it the best place in California to observe the San Andreas Fault. According to Robert Iacopi, author of the classic fault guide Earthquake Country (soon to be released in a new edition), the Carrizo Plain offers an encyclopedia of fault-related features: scarps, sag ponds, and, most noticeably, stream-beds diverted as much as 400 feet from their usual courses.
(Visiting the Carrizo requires some planning. The Nature Conservancy's small Carrizo Visitor Center will steer you toward the fault, but the center is open only through June. Carry a copy of Iacopi's book, or get the Bureau of Land Management's new "Geologic Auto Tour" guide, available free by calling 805/391-6000.)
From the Carrizo Plain the fault runs into northern Ventura County - and here it does something unusual. All through Northern and Central
California, the San Andreas has cut a straight path northwest to southeast. Now it suddenly veers due east.
USGS seismologist Lucy Jones explains that in Southern California, the two continental plates aren't sliding past each other but bump at a 30 degrees| angle. "It's as if we were running Southern California into the San Andreas Fault and shattering it, and sweeping the pieces around the edge."
One result of this shattering and sweeping is that the San Gabriels and San Bernardinos are rising nearly as quickly as any mountain ranges in the world. A second result is that in Southern California, earthquakes don't tend to cluster along the San Andreas as they do farther north. Instead, stresses are displaced onto lesser-known faults - the Elysian Park near downtown Los Angeles, the Whittier, the Sierra Madre, the Oak Ridge, and the still unnamed thrust fault that caused the Northridge earthquake of January 1994.
This is not to say that the San Andreas in Southern California is
incapable of generating major quakes. In 1857 it produced a temblor fully the equal of the great San Francisco quake. This quake is usually called the Fort Tejon quake, for the army outpost in the Tehachapis that suffered the most damage. ("The most terrific shock imaginable," Tejon's quartermaster reported after the fort had collapsed around him.)
From Fort Tejon, the fault runs along the southern edge of the
Antelope Valley, crossing State 14 at Palmdale. (It is clearly visible in a road cut here, although for safety's sake drivers should let their
passengers spot it for them.) Then the San Andreas runs through Devil's
Punchbowl County Park, whose goblinlike eroded rocks may have slid north with the Pacific plate 25 miles from their original home near Cajon Pass. Just to the east of the Devil's Punchbowl lies St. Andrew's Abbey. "We have to take the good with the bad, and the bad with the good," says the abbey's Brother Benedict: the fault may endanger St. Andrew's ceramics workshop, but it has lifted up the San Gabriel Mountains to give the abbey a heavenly view.
At Cajon Pass, the fault disappears into the San Bernardino Mountains, then splinters off into parallel faults that run to the Mexican border. In a way, Cajon Pass offers one of the best views of how thoroughly the San Andreas has shaped California. You'll see the tilted slabs of Mormon Rocks, believed by some to be separated kin of the rocks at Devil's Punchbowl to the northeast. You'll see two mountain ranges, the San Gabriels and San Bernardinos, that the fault has lifted up, then pulled apart. And in the pass, the tangle of railroad tracks and oil pipelines and high-tension towers, the steady drone of traffic on Interstate 15, all testify to the way we've located a complex civilization on shaky ground.
Seismologist Lindh says the San Andreas has given California far more than it has taken away. "Without the Coast Range and the Sierra Nevada, California would be uninhabited desert. The San Andreas gave us those. Agriculture came out of the broad valleys - the Sacramento, the San Joaquin. Those are basins caused by thrust faults. Along the edge of those valleys, you get faulting that traps petroleum. That's our oil and gas. If you take oil and agriculture alone, you get $15 billion a year. Where are the most economically prosperous places on earth? California and Japan. What are among the most active seismic regions on earth? California and Japan."
"The surface of the earth is a dangerous place to live," he continues. "I think it was Will Durant who said, 'Civilization exists by geological consent, subject to change without notice.' But active geological processes are not just a threat to civilization. They create civilization. The earth is alive. Life would not have evolved, we would not have evolved, if the earth was not an active, dangerous place."
RELATED ARTICLE: Off the fault: exhibits, museums
San Francisco. Academy of Sciences, Golden Gate Park. The museum's
good seismology exhibit includes a platform where you can experience an
earthquake; (415) 750-7145.
Menlo Park. The U.S. Geological Survey, at 345 Middlefield Road, has exhibits on seismology, and computer stations where you can look at
earthquake data; (415) 329-4000.
COPYRIGHT 1995 Sunset Publishing Corporation
Special Features: illustration; photograph; map
Descriptors: San Andreas Fault--Description and travel; California--Geology
File Segment: MI File 47
4. How do anabolic steroids affect athletic performance?
Answer: I found varying results on this question depending on the year of the writing. Earlier years found more negative physical effects of the steroids than did later years. However, with the topic being related to medicine, I felt the more current the information, the better the resource. According to Dayn Perry (January 2003), nearly one-half of baseball players take some form of drugs, with anabolic steroids (usually testosterone) being the most prevalent. While earlier reports stated that steroids increased the risk of heart disease, and of liver, kidney, prostate, and testicular cancer, these reports were found to be false. The major effect of the drugs is to increase muscle mass and strength and decrease body fat. Thus, the athlete becomes stronger and has larger muscles. However, Chris Yeager, a human performance specialist, states in the article that the larger upper body muscles do not seem to be helping the players hit more home runs. He believes that steroids could increase a batting average if the player worked to strengthen his leg muscles as well, because upper body strength does not increase bat speed and help in hitting home runs. At this point, taking steroids appears to be adversely affecting athletes performance. Likewise, in the International Journal of Cardiology (1987), the authors found with bodybuilders that steroids did not improve athletic performance, and they also mentioned some side effects.
Strategy: Because this question involved medicine and/or pharmaceutical products, I chose to search two databases - Medline (155) and Pharm-line (174). Medline dated from 1966-2003 and Pharm-line from 1978-2003, both giving current articles. By using proximity connectors and the logical operator and, I connected the words anabolic steroids with athletic performance for the first set. Then I added the word affect and received two hits as follows:
Set Items Description
S1 49 ANABOLIC(W)STEROIDS AND ATHLETIC(W)PERFORMANCE
S2 2 S1 AND AFFECT
The resulting abstract using Dialog Classic was as follows:
05704465 88057742 PMID: 3679608
Lipoprotein analysis in bodybuilders.
McKillop G; Ballantyne D
Department of Medical Cardiology, Victoria Infirmary, Glasgow, U.K.
International journal of cardiology (NETHERLANDS) Dec 1987, 17 (3) p281-8, ISSN 0167-5273 Journal Code: 8200291
Document type: Journal Article
Main Citation Owner: NLM
Record type: Completed
Subfile: INDEX MEDICUS
The use of anabolic steroids to augment athletic performance is widespread. It is known that these drugs can adversely affect lipoproteins in normal volunteers, leading to increased cholesterol and low density lipoprotein and depressed high density lipoprotein. It has been shown that endurance type exercise can lead to beneficial effects on lipoproteins but the effects of power exercise are less clear-cut and made more difficult to interpret by
prior anabolic steroid use. This paper details the lipoprotein results in 24 subjects, eight sedentary controls, eight non-steroid and eight steroid using bodybuilders. The results revealed no significant difference between sedentary controls and non-steroid bodybuilders suggesting that this form of training does not cause beneficial effects on lipoproteins. However, the steroid-using
groups had higher cholesterol and low density lipoprotein, with lower high density lipoprotein, high density lipoprotein2, high density lipoprotein3 and high density lipoprotein2/high density lipoprotein3 ratios compared to the other two groups. The long-term effects of such results may be an increased risk of atherosclerosis and requires long-term follow-up.
Tags: Human; Male
Descriptors: *Anabolic Steroids--adverse effects--AE; *Lipoproteins--blood
--BL; *Somatotypes; *Sports; *Weight Lifting; Adult; Anabolic Steroids
--administration and dosage--AD; Cholesterol--blood--BL; Lipoproteins, HDL
CAS Registry No.: 0 (Anabolic Steroids); 0 (Lipoproteins); 0
(Lipoproteins, HDL); 0 (Triglycerides); 57-88-5 (Cholesterol)
Record Date Created: 19880120
Record Date Completed: 19880120
In DIALINDEX, I used the following search strategy:
- I chose the category Medicine and Pharmaceuticals
- Then I chose Research and Development
- Then Medicine
- Then Medical Journals Full Text
- Query: Publications: Any Journal (default)
Entire text (anabolic steroids) AND (athletic performance)
- Limit by years 1994-2003
- Results: 69 (this was the second)
- #02133686 Supplier Number: 95541086 Dayn Perry, Pumped-up hysteria: forget the hype. Steroids arent wrecking professional baseball, Reason 34 (January 2003), 32-40.
The resulting article was as follows:
3/9/2 (Item 2 from file: 149)
02133686 Supplier Number: 95541086 (THIS IS THE FULL TEXT )
Pumped-up hysteria: forget the hype. Steroids aren't wrecking professional baseball.
Reason , 34 , 8 , 32(8)
Publication Format: Magazine/Journal
Record Type: Fulltext Target Audience: Consumer
Word Count: 5060 Line Count: 00409
HAD KEN CAMINITI been a less famous ballplayer, or had he merely confessed his own sins, then it would have been a transient controversy. But it wasn't. Last May, Caminiti, in a cathartic sit-down with Tom Verducci of Sports Illustrated, became the first major league baseball player, current or retired, to admit to using anabolic steroids during his playing days. Specifically, he said he used them during the 1996 season, when he was named the National League's Most Valuable Player. And his truth session didn't stop there.
"It's no secret what's going on in baseball. At least half the guys are using (steroids)," Caminiti told SI. "They talk about it. They joke about it with each other....I don't want to hurt fellow teammates or fellow friends. But I've got nothing to hide."
The suggestion that steroids are a systemic problem in professional athletics is hardly shocking, but such candor from playersparticularly baseball players, who until recently weren't subject to league-mandated drug testing--was virtually unheard of. Before the Caminiti flap had time to grow stale, Jose Canseco, another high-profile ex-ballplayer, upped the ante, declaring that a whopping 85 percent of current major league players were "juicing."
The estimates were unfounded, the sources unreliable, and the
implications unclear. But a media orgy had begun. The questions that are being asked of the players--Do you think it's worth it? How many are using? Why did the players union wait so long to adopt random testing? Why won't you take a test right now?--are mostly of the "Have you stopped beating your wife?" variety. The accusation is ensconced in the question.
This approach may be satisfying to the self-appointed guardians of baseball's virtue, but it leaves important questions unexplored. Indeed, before the sport can solve its steroid problem, it must determine whether it even has one.
From those sounding the clarion call for everything from stricter
league policies to federal intervention, you'll hear the same two-pronged concern repeated time and again: Ballplayers are endangering their health and tarnishing baseball's competitive integrity. These are defensible, if dogmatic, positions, but the sporting media's fealty to them obscures the fact that both points are dubious.
A more objective survey of steroids' role in sports shows that their health risks, while real, have been grossly exaggerated; that the political response to steroids has been driven more by a moral panic over drug use than by the actual effects of the chemicals; and that the worst problems associated with steroids result from their black-market status rather than their inherent qualities. As for baseball's competitive integrity, steroids pose no greater threat than did other historically contingent "enhancements," ranging from batting helmets to the color line. It is possible, in fact, that many players who use steroids are not noticeably improving their performance as a result.
There are more than 600 different types of steroids, but it's
testosterone, the male sex hormone, that's most relevant to athletics.
Testosterone has an androgenic, or masculinizing, function and an anabolic, or tissue-building, function. It's the second set of effects that attracts athletes, who take testosterone to increase their muscle mass and strength and decrease their body fat. When testosterone is combined with a rigorous weight-training regimen, spectacular gains in size and power can result. The allure is obvious, but there are risks as well.
Anecdotal accounts of harrowing side effects are not hard to
find--everything from "'roid rage" to sketchy rumors of a female East
German swimmer forced to undergo a sex change operation because of the
irreversible effects of excess testosterone. But there are problems with the research that undergirds many of these claims. The media give the impression that there's something inevitably Faustian about taking
anabolics--that gains in the present will undoubtedly exact a price in the future. Christopher Caldwell, writing recently in The Wall Street journal, proclaimed, "Doctors are unanimous that (anabolic steroids) increase the risk of heart disease, and of liver, kidney, prostate and testicular cancer."
This is false. "We know steroids can be used with a reasonable
measure of safety," says Charles Yesalis, a Penn State epidemiologist,
steroid researcher for more than 25 years, and author of the 1998 book The Steroids Game. "We know this because they're used in medicine all the time, just not to enhance body image or improve athletic performance." Yesalis notes that steroids were first used for medical purposes in the 1930s, some three decades before the current exacting standards of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) were in place.
Even so, anabolic steroids or their derivatives are commonly used to treat breast cancer and androgen deficiencies and to promote red blood cell production. They are also used in emerging anti-aging therapies and to treat surgical or cancer patients with damaged muscle tissue.
Caldwell cites one of the most common fears: that anabolics cause
liver cancer. There is dubious evidence linking oral anabolics to liver
tumors, but athletes rarely take steroids in liquid suspension form. Users almost uniformly opt for the injectable or topical alternatives, which have chemical structures that aren't noxious to the liver. And as Yesalis observes, even oral steroids aren't causally linked to cancer; instead, some evidence associates them with benign liver tumors.
More specifically, it's C-17 alkylated oral steroids that are perhaps detrimental to liver function. But the evidence is equivocal at best. A 1990 computer-assisted study of all existing medical literature found but three cases of steroid-associated liver tumors. Of those three cases, one subject had been taking outrageously large doses of C-17 oral anabolics without cessation for five years, and a second case was more indicative of classic liver malignancy. It's also C-17 orals, and not other forms of steroids, that are associated with decreased levels of HDL, or "good" cholesterol. But, again, C-17s are almost never used for athletic or cosmetic purposes.
Another commonly held belief is that steroid use causes aggressive or enraged behavior. Consider the case of San Francisco Giants outfielder Barry Bonds, whose impressive late-career home run hitting and built-up physique have long raised observers' eyebrows. Last season, Bonds, long known for being irascible, had a dugout shoving match with teammate Jeff Kent. A few columnists, including Bill Lankhof of The Toronto Sun and Jacob Longan of the Stillwater News-Press, obliquely diagnosed "'roid rage" from afar. "There's very inconsistent data on whether 'roid rage even exists," says Yesalis. "I'm more open to the possibility than I used to be, but its
incidence is rare, and the studies that concluded it does exist largely
haven't accounted for underlying factors or the placebo effect."
Scientists are nearly unanimous that excessive testosterone causes aggression in animals, but this association begins to wither as you move up the evolutionary ladder. Diagnosing such behavior in athletes is especially tricky. "There's a certain degree of aggression that's not only acceptable but necessary in competitive sports," Yesalis says. "What's perhaps just the intensity that's common to many athletes gets perceived as steroid-linked outbursts."
Fears about steroid use also include other cancers, heart
enlargement, increased blood pressure, elevated cholesterol levels, and
musculoskeletal injuries. Upon closer examination, these too turn out to be overblown. Reports associating heart enlargement, or cardiomegaly, with steroid use often ignore the role of natural, non-threatening enlargement brought on by prolonged physical exertion, not to mention the effects of alcohol abuse. The relationship is unclear at best. Evidence supporting a link between steroids and ligament and tendon damage is weak, since steroid-related injuries are virtually indistinguishable from those occurring normally. And blood pressure problems, according to Yesalis, have been exaggerated. There is some associative evidence that steroid use can increase the risk of prostate cancer, but this link has yet to be borne out in a laboratory setting. No studies of any kind link the use of anabolics to testicular cancer.
Addiction is a legitimate concern, and Yesalis says a quarter to a half of those who use steroids solely to improve their body image exhibit signs of psychological dependence. "But in all my years of research," Yesalis continues, "I've only known three professional athletes who were clinically addicted to steroids." The distinction, he explains, is that professional athletes see steroids as little more than a tool to help them do their job--the way "an office worker views his computer." Once their playing days are over, almost all the athletes within Yesalis' purview "terminate their use of the drug."
One reason the health effects of steroids are so uncertain is a
dearth of research. In the almost 65 years that anabolic steroids have been in our midst, there has not been a single epidemiological study of the effects of long-term use. Instead, Yesalis explains, concerns about
extended usage are extrapolated from what's known about short-term effects. The problem is that those short-term research projects are often case studies, which Yesalis calls the "lowest life form of scientific studies." Case studies often draw conclusions from a single test subject and are especially prone to correlative errors.
"We've had thousands upon thousands (of long-term studies) done on tobacco, cocaine, you name it," Yesalis complains. "But for as much as you see and hear about anabolic steroids, they haven't even taken that step."
What about the research that has been done? At least some of it seems to yield engineered results. "The studies linking steroid use to cancer were performed by and large on geriatric patients," notes Rick Collins, attorney, former bodybuilder, and author of the book Legal Muscle, which offers an exhaustive look at anabolic steroid use under U.S. law. The hazard of such research is that side effects observed in an older patient could be the result of any number of physiological problems unrelated to steroid intake. Moreover, the elderly body is probably more susceptible to adverse reactions than the body of a competitive athlete.
Collins believes that some studies were performed with a conclusion in mind at the outset. "Their hearts were in the right place," says Collins. "Curtailing nonessential steroid use is a good and noble goal, but they undermined their efforts by exaggerating the dangers." Call it the cry-wolf effect.
For instance, it's long been dogma that use of anabolic steroids
interferes with proper hepatic (liver) function and causes thickening of the heart muscle. However, a 1999 study at the University of North Texas found that it's not steroid use that causes these medical phenomena; rather, it's intense resistance training. Weight-lifting causes tissue damage, and, at high extremes, can elevate liver counts and thicken the left ventricular wall of the heart. Both disorders were observed in high-intensity weightlifters irrespective of steroid use. The researchers concluded that previous studies had "misled the medical community" into embellishing the side effects of use.
The cry-wolf effect may have as much to do with the boom in steroid use as anything else. Athletes were inclined to be skeptical of warnings about steroids because their own experience contradicted what critics were saying. When use of Dianabol and other anabolics began to surge in the 1960s and '70s, opponents decried them as ineffective. The message was: They don't work, so don't take the risk. But steroids did work, and users knew it. Once weightlifters, bodybuilders, and other athletes realized they were being lied to about the efficacy of steroids, they were less likely to believe warnings about health hazards, especially when the evidence backing them up was vague or anecdotal.
One of the chief drumbeaters for the steroids-don't-work movement was Bob Goldman, author of the hysterical anti-steroids polemic Death in the Locker Room. Goldman, a former competitive power-lifter turned physician and sports medicine specialist, was an early, and shrill, critic of performance pharmacology. In his 1984 expose, Goldman attributes steroids' tissue-building qualities almost entirely to the placebo effect. His agenda may have been morally sound, but his conclusions ran counter to the preponderance of scientific evidence at the time. Today, his claims are even less supportable. Goldman is working on a new edition of the book, one that he says will better crystallize current scientific thought on the subject. Of his 1984 edition and its seeming histrionics, Goldman says the book was intended "as an educational tool to warn high school students of the possible hazards of drug use, but then it became something else."
Whatever his intentions at the time, Goldman's views played well in the media, which cast the book as a sobering empirical assault on
performance-enhancing drugs. Its warnings soon gained traction with
lawmakers. Although the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 had already made it
illegal to dispense steroids for nonmedical reasons, Congress, ostensibly out of concern over reports of increasing steroid use among high school athletes, revisited the matter in 1989.
Congressional hearings convened to determine whether steroids should become the first hormone placed on Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act, reserved for drugs with substantial abuse potential. Such legislation, if passed, would make possession of anabolic steroids without a prescription a federal offense punishable by up to a year in prison. Distributing steroids for use, already prohibited by the 1988 law, would be a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. What's usually forgotten about these hearings, or perhaps simply ignored, is the zeal with which many regulatory agencies, research organizations, and professional groups
objected to the proposed changes.
The American Medical Association (AMA), the FDA, the National
Institute on Drug Abuse, and even the Drug Enforcement Administration all opposed the reclassification. Particularly adamant was the AMA, whose spokespersons argued that steroid users did not exhibit the physical or psychological dependence necessary to justify a change in policy.
Nevertheless, Congress voted into law the 1990 Anabolic Steroids
Control Act, which reclassified steroids as Schedule III controlled
substances, placing them on legal par with barbiturates and narcotic
painkillers such as Vicodin, just one step down from amphetamines, cocaine, and morphine. Now even first-time steroid users faced possible jail time.
Prohibition naturally produced a black market, and unintended
consequences followed. Besides creating yet another economic niche for the criminal underworld, the legislation scuttled any hope of using steroids as a legitimate and professionally administered performance enhancer.
Criminalization of steroids created dangers more serious than any
that had prompted the ban. Once steroids became contraband, many athletes bought black-market anabolics that, unbeknownst to them, were spiked or cut with other drugs or intended solely for veterinary use. Physicians were forbidden to prescribe steroids for promoting muscle growth and thus were not able to provide steroid users with responsible, professionally informed oversight. New league policies even ban the use of steroids for recovery from injuries.
Combine the lack of medical supervision with the mind-set of the
garden-variety steroid user, and you have a potentially perilous situation. "Many of those using anabolic steroids," says Penn State's Yesalis, "have the attitude that if one (dose) works, then five or 10 will work even better. That's dangerous."
Athletes who acquire steroids on the black market are loath to
consult with their physician after they begin using regularly. If they do disclose their habit and ask for guidance, the physician, for fear of professional discipline or even criminal charges, may refuse to continue seeing the patient. For professional athletes, another deterrent to proper use is that all responsible doctors keep rigorously accurate records of their dealings with patients. The fear that those records might be leaked or even subpoenaed makes pro athletes even less likely to seek medical guidance.
Since many of the observed side effects of steroids--anecdotal,
apocryphal, or otherwise--most likely result from excessive or improper use of the drug, one wonders: Can steroids be used for muscle building with a reasonable degree of safety? "The candid answer is yes, but with caveats," says Collins, the attorney who specializes in steroid law. "It would need to be under the strict direction of a physician and administered only after a thorough physical examination, and it would need to be taken at reasonable and responsible dosages."
It's a statement that even Goldman, once the bellwether scaremonger, says is "something I could probably agree with."
Herbert Haupt, a private orthopedist and sports medicine specialist in St. Louis, is "absolutely, unequivocally, positively opposed" to steroid use as a training or cosmetic tool. But he concedes that properly supervised use of the drug for those purposes can be reasonably safe. "The adverse side effects of steroids typically subside upon cessation of use," says Haupt, "and use over a short span, say a six-week duration, probably carries nominal risk."
Moreover, the official attitude toward steroid use seems anomalous when compared to the treatment of other methods that people use to improve their bodies. "People die from botched liposuctions," Collins notes. "We're also allowed to inject botulism into people's faces (in botox therapy), but no one is allowed to use steroids for similar cosmetic reasons."
Collins is quick to add that adolescents, whose bodies are already steeped in hormones, cannot use steroids safely. But the fact remains that the illegality of steroids makes responsible professional oversight virtually impossible.
Another puzzling distinction is the one made between steroids and
other training supplements. Many baseball players have openly used
androstenedione, a muscle-building compound that major league baseball
hasn't banned even though it's merely a molecular puddle-jump from anabolic steroids. Androstenedione is a chemical precursor that is converted to testosterone by the liver. Creatine monohydrate, another effective supplement, is far more widely used than androstenedione and is virtually free of stigma. Creatine is chemically unrelated to anabolic steroids or androstenedione and also differs in that it does not manipulate hormone levels; rather, creatine allows muscle cells to recover from fatigue more quickly. But all three substances--creatine, androstenedione, and anabolic steroids--increase a naturally occurring substance in the body to promote the building of muscle tissue. Anabolic steroids simply accomplish this end more quickly and dramatically.
The list of "artificial" enhancements doesn't stop there. Indeed, the boundaries of what constitutes a "natural" modern athlete are increasingly arbitrary. Pitchers benefit from computer modeling of their throwing motions. Medical and pharmacological technologies help players to prevent and recover from injuries better than ever before. Even laboratory-engineered protein shakes, nutrition bars, and vitamin C tablets should theoretically violate notions of "natural" training. Yet no one claims these tools are tarnishing the competitive integrity of the game.
Muscle Beach Zombies
Rangers pitcher Kenny Rogers has said, in a bizarre admission, that he doesn't throw as hard as he can because he fears that the line drives hit by today's players, if properly placed, could kill him on the mound. And you need not read the sports pages for long to find someone complaining that today's "juiced" ballplayers are toppling the game's sacrosanct records by the shadiest of means. This sentiment began percolating when Roger Mans' single-season home run record tottered and fell to Mark McGwire in 1998. Since the Caminiti and Canseco stories broke, sportswriters have been resorting to preposterous rhetorical flourishes in dismissing the accomplishments of the modern hitter. Bill Conlin of the Philadelphia Daily News, for example, writes: "To all the freaks, geeks and 'roid zombies who
have turned major league baseball into a Muscle Beach version of the
Medellin Cartel: Take your records and get lost."
Yet baseball statistics have never existed in a vacuum. Babe Ruth
became the sport's chief pantheon dweller without ever competing against a dark-skinned ballplayer. Chuck Klein of the Philadelphia Phillies posted some eye-popping numbers in the 1930s, but he did it in an era when runs were scored in bundles, and he took outrageous advantage of the BakerBowl's right field fence, which was a mere 280 feet from home plate. Detroit pitcher Hal Newhouser won two most valuable player awards and a plaque in Cooperstown in part by dominating competition that had been thinned out by World War II's conscription. Sandy Koufax crafted his run of success in the
'60s with the help of a swollen strike zone. Also a boon to Koufax was the helpfully designed Dodger Stadium, which included, according to many, an illegally heightened mound. Gaylord Perry succored his Hall of Fame career by often calling upon an illegal spitball pitch. Take any baseball statistic, and something is either inflating or depressing it to some degree .
Beginning in the mid-'90s in the American League and the late '90s in the National League, home runs reached unseen levels. This fact has encouraged much of the present steroids conjecture. But correlation does not imply causation, as the deductive reasoning platitude goes, and there are more likely explanations for the recent increase in homers.
Home runs are up, in large part, because several hitter-friendly
ballparks have opened in recent years. Coors Field, home of the Colorado Rockies since 1995, is the greatest run-scoring environment in major league history. Until the 2000 season, the Houston Astros played in the Astrodome, a cavernous, run-suppressing monstrosity with remarkably poor visuals for hitters. They replaced it with Enron Field (now renamed Minute Mald Park), which is second only to Coors Field in terms of helping hitters and boasts a left field line that's so short it's in violation of major league rules. The Pittsburgh Pirates, Milwaukee Brewers, and Texas Rangers also have recently replaced their old ballparks with stadiums far more accommodating to hitters. The Arizona Diamondbacks came into being in 1998; they too play
in a park that significantly inflates offensive statistics. The St. Louis Cardinals, Baltimore Orioles, and Chicago White Sox have all moved in their outfield fences in the last few years. Add to all that the cont emporary strike zone, which plainly benefits hitters, and it's little wonder that home runs are at heretofore unimaginable levels.
And then there is Barry Bonds and the momentous season he had in
2001. In the midst of Bonds' siege on McGwire's still freshly minted
single-season home run record, Bob Klapisch of the Bergen County, New
Jersey, Record made a transparent observation-cum-accusation by writing, "No one has directly accused Bonds of cheating--whether it be a corked bat or steroids...."
Bonds is plainly bigger than he was early in his career. That fact, considered in tandem with his almost unimaginable statistical achievements, has led many to doubt the purity of his training habits. But Bonds had bulked up to his current size by the late '90s, and from then until 2001 his home run totals were in line with his previous yearly levels. So there's obviously a disconnect between his body size and his home runs. Last season, bulky as ever, Bonds hit "only" 46 homers, which isn't out of step with his pre-2001 performance. More than likely, Bonds had an aberrant season in 2001--not unlike Roger Mans in 1961.
Steroids vs. the Perfect Swing
This is not to suggest that no ballplayers are taking advantage of modern pharmacology. Rick Collins says he knows some major league
ballplayers are using steroids but can't hazard a guess as to how many. And Yesalis believes that at least 30 percent of major league ballplayers are on steroids.
But then there are skeptics like Tony Cooper of the San Francisco
Chronicle, a longtime sportswriter and 20-year veteran of the weightlifting and bodybuilding culture. During the 2001 season, as Bonds was assailing McGwire's freshly minted home run record, Cooper responded to the groundswell of steroid speculation by writing that he saw no evidence of steroid use in baseball. Cooper had seen plenty of steroid users and plenty of "naked baseball players," and he couldn't name one obvious juicer in the entire sport. As for Bonds, Cooper called the accusations "ludicrous," writing that the Giants' slugger "merely looks like a man who keeps himself in condition."
Canseco, of course, claims 85 percent of players are on steroids.
Caminiti initially said half, then backpedaled to 15 percent. Other players have dotted the points in between with guesses of their own. Whatever the actual figure, such widely divergent estimates suggest that not even the ballplayers themselves know the extent of the problem. And if they don't know, the pundits assuredly don't either.
A more reasonable (and answerable) question is: If players are on
steroids, how much of a difference is it making?
Not much of one, according to Chris Yeager, a human performance
specialist, private hitting instructor, and longtime weightLifter. Yeager's argument is not a replay of Bob Goldman's assertion that steroids function merely as placebos. Yeager posits that the engorged arms, chests, and shoulders of today's ballplayers could well be the result of steroid use--but that they aren't helping them hit home runs.
"Upper body strength doesn't increase bat speed," he explains, "and bat speed is vital to hitting home runs. The upper body is used in a ballistic manner. It contributes very little in terms of power generation." Yeager likens the arms, in the context of a hitter's swing, to the bat itself: simply a means to transfer energy. A batter's pectoral muscles, says Yeager, "are even less useful."
Yeager isn't saying steroid use couldn't increase a batter's power. He's saying most ballplayers don't train properly." There's a difference between training for strength and training for power," he says, "and most baseball players train for strength." If hitters carefully and specifically trained their legs and hips to deliver sudden blasts of power, then steroids could be useful to them, but by and large that's not what they do. "Mark McGwire hit 49 home runs as a 23-yearold rookie," Yeager says. "And, while I think he probably used steroids at some point in his career, he hit home runs primarily because of his excellent technique, his knowledge of the strike zone, and the length of his arms. Barry Bonds could be on steroids, but his power comes from the fact that he has the closest thing to a perfect swing that I've ever seen."
Much Ado About Nothing
In what at first blush seems counterintuitive, Yeager asserts that steroid use may have decreased home run levels in certain instances. Specifically, he points to Canseco. "I'm almost positive Canseco used steroids, and I think it hurt his career," says Yeager. "He became an overmuscled, one-dimensional player who couldn't stay healthy. Without steroids, he might have hit 6oo, 700 home runs in his career."
In short, steroids are a significant threat to neither the health of the players nor the health of the game. Yet the country has returned to panic mode, with both private and public authorities declaring war on tissue-building drugs.
The chief instrument in that war is random drug testing, which major league baseball adopted in September 2002 with the ratification of the most recent collective bargaining agreement. Players can be tested for drugs at any time, for any reason whatsoever. Leaving aside what this implies for players' privacy, testing is easily skirted by users who know what they're doing.
Sprinter Ben Johnson tested positive for steroids at the 1988 Summer Olympics and forfeited his gold medal, but subsequent investigation revealed that he'd passed 19 drug tests prior to failing the final one at the Seoul games. Yesalis says most professional athletes who use steroids know how to pass a drug test. Whether by using masking agents, undetectable proxies like human growth hormone, or water-based testosterone, they can avoid a positive reading. At the higher levels of sports, Yesalis believes, drug testing is done mostly "for public relations." Image protection is a sensible goal for any business, but no one should be deluded into thinking it eliminates drug use.
Nevertheless, lawmakers are lining up to push the process along.
California state Sen. Don Perata (D-East Bay) has introduced a bill that would require all professional athletes playing in his state to submit to random drug testing. Federal legislation could be forthcoming from Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.). It's unlikely that any bill calling for this level of government intrusion will pass. But the fact that such legislation is even being considered suggests how entrenched the steroid taboo is. Meanwhile, baseball's new collective bargaining agreement has firmly established drug testing in the sport. The Major League Baseball Players Association, contrary to what some expected, agreed to the testing program with little resistance.
The measure won't do much to prevent the use of performance-enhancing drugs in baseball, but it may serve as a palliative for the media. At least until the next cause celebre comes along.
Dayn Perry (email@example.com) is a freelance sportswriter based in Austin, Texas.
COPYRIGHT 2003 Reason Foundation
Descriptors: Steroids (Drugs)--Usage; Baseball players--Drug use
Geographic Codes/Names: 1USA United States
File Segment: MI File 47
CONCLUSION: I found the DIALINDEX much easier to work in. I liked the categories of databases rather than having to go through the entire list in the Blue Sheets. I also like the date limitation ranges and the Web search strategies (parentheses, standard Boolean operators, etc.) rather than the set codes. I also believe using the Web version is much cheaper, which was one of the three Cs that we were instructed to observe.