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Do all adults really cheat?

By Jeffery Armstrong

You readers knew that I had to put my own spin on the Kobe Bryant case that's been permeating the news.

When I learned that Kobe admitted to cheating on his very attractive wife, two people came to my mind: a 12-year-old girl and comedian Chris Rock.

I'll start with the girl. I forget her name, but she and one of her female friends represented Atlanta in a two-on-two basketball exhibition in Orlando, Fla. sponsored by the NBA a few years ago. The girls, who live in Fayette County, defeated several teams from all over the country to make it to Orlando. I was sports editor at a weekly newspaper in Fayette then and I interviewed them for a summer feature story.

While in Orlando, the girls said they met NBA players and the hosts of the TV show "NBA Inside Stuff," Ahmad Rashad and Summer Sanders. I asked the girls, off the record, how they felt about meeting all those sports celebrities. One of the girls said Summer Sanders spent all her time flirting with NBA players.

I said to the girls that I thought Summer was married. After I said that, the other girl said something to me that I'll never forget: "It doesn't matter – all adults cheat."

Wow – it's amazing what kids notice. "All adults cheat" rang through my head for the rest of that day. I kept thinking to myself, is it true? It may be, especially for male athletes. Kobe has a beautiful wife in great shape (even after giving birth a few months ago) who probably does everything he wants her to do and still he was tempted into adultery. I want to say that if I was an athlete and had a wife like Vanessa Bryant at home, I'd be counting down the days when I could see her and wouldn't give the time of day to any other woman, no matter how good she looked. I value what wedding vows stand for and I couldn't see myself committing adultery.

But that's easy for me to say. Chris Rock said in one of his comedy routines that a man is only as faithful as his options. At this point in my life, my options are limited. Gorgeous, gold-digging women don't come by the newspaper parking lot every night waiting for me to leave the office, hoping that I'll take them home for nights of unbridled passion and then share some of my salary with them. I know that's hard for you all to believe, but it really doesn't happen. I actually have to work hard to pull a top-notch girl.

The options for athletes like Kobe, and those guys who are "players," are wide open. Most girls, including top-notch ones, will throw themselves at some guys' feet at the drop of a dime. Former NBA player Dennis Rodman said in his book that he can call a gorgeous woman anytime of the day or night, tell her to come over and she'll be at his house in two shakes. I'll be lucky if a girl I like will go to the movies with me. Chris Rock also said it's hard for men not to cheat, especially if women chase them. Rock said men just can't run that fast. I guess that really holds true for male athletes or any powerful men – when you've got sexy women wanting you all the time, how can even the most loyal boyfriend or husband turn all of them down?Last year, MTV did a special on Kobe and he looked at the camera and told women to leave him alone; he was happily married and he wanted no other women. I guess Kobe, a certified adult, couldn't escape his destiny. ?Cause after all, all adults cheat.

Jeffery Armstrong is a sports writer for the Herald and his column appears on Thursdays. He can be reached at jarmstrong@henryherald.com.