What can Vino do now? What can he say? I looked into my crystal ball and identified the top ten excuses he is most likely to use in attempting to explain away his positive test result for homologous blood doping.
"I was bleeding to death from my kneecaps in the middle of the night and the only person who was there was this random stranger, who gave me a blood transfusion using a butterknife, some Jack Daniels to sterilize the room, and a Bic ballpoint pen. It saved my life. I'm not even angry - I'm impressed."
"Of course I have other people's blood in me. Don't you?"
"I am Specialized."
"That blood is from another rider. It just hopped in there when it realized I was about to crush its owner. Can you blame it? No, I think not."
"I'm not a normal human. I was engineered by Cervelo. So of course I have some unusual design features."
"It's common among people from Kazakhstan. We're so poor would could only afford half the blood a normal country has. So we have to share."
"Blood? What blood? I don't have any blood in my veins - even Phil Ligget said it was icewater. Who are you going to believe - me or your lyin' eyes?"
"I must have gotten it from this dirty toilet seat in a porta john on the Galibier."
"When I saw that organized crime scandals in the NBA and NFL along with a bigger doping scandal in MLB were overshadowing scandals in the Tour, I thought it was time to take action."
"Who are you calling half-blooded? Racist!"
"Eh, don't worry about it. It's just left over from when my hemoglobin had some friends over for a party. They didn't exactly clean up afterwards... bastards."
"It's not mine. It's Ivan Basso's dog's blood. So technically it's the dog that is in violation of UCI standards, not me. You should be talking to him. He's a baaad doggy."
"Eufemiano Fuentes? Isn't she (ahem) that hot chick who's always (cough) on MTV? Next question..."
"I just used the cream, the clear, and bright red."
"It's not blood, it's the missing WMDs. The world should be thanking me right now."
"Blood? I don't know what you're talking about. I don't have any blood. Look? See my hands? No blood on them. No blood."
"It depends on how you define the word 'blood'."
"I was just loading up on some extra so I could give a bit more when I make my weekly blood donation to the local Children's Hospital, Orphanage, and Free Veterinary Center for Injured Animals Found by Kids. I think it's run by endangered pacifist dolphins, using renewable energy."
"Yeah, sure, I was doping."
Hah. That last one was obviously just a joke. Don't be silly. He'd never say that.