THAT'S WHAT LED ME, a few weeks later, to Dr. Jones. He was an internist by training and a specialist in the hot new field of anti-aging medicine, which involves helping people—who are always affluent, since these treatments are expensive—try to stave off the effects of growing old with a combination of nutrition and drugs, including HGH, steroids, and testosterone. A doctor I knew had tipped me off, with a wink, that Dr. Jones also used these drugs to "work with a lot of athletes."
Inside his waiting room, I'd squeezed in next to the World's Largest Man and a woman who I thought might be an actress—though I couldn't be certain, since she was wearing a hat and sunglasses indoors. The jumbo guy was somebody I was pretty sure spent Sunday afternoons chasing quarterbacks on television. Such people were, I would come to realize, the core of Dr. Jones's business: athletes and attractive women of all ages. Plus rich guys over 50. And the odd Playmate or two. Oh, and me.
Dr. Jones was an intense guy with a wiry build, close-cropped dark hair, and Al Pacino's restless energy. He ran a small, boutique operation: high service, high price. (I ended up spending around $7,500 for drugs in my eight-month program.) Dr. Jones knew what I was up to and agreed to help me try the drugs in a safe manner. What he did for me—supplying drugs solely for the purpose of increasing my athletic prowess—is not illegal, but it would certainly be frowned on by many of his colleagues. For that matter, many of them disapprove of the whole notion of anti-aging medicine, believing these drugs should be used only to fight specific maladies, not the natural process of aging.
But that doesn't bother Dr. Jones. He takes anti-aging drugs himself, and in his rapid-fire style, he told me he wasn't in the "sickness" business, as he described the work of ordinary doctors. He was in the "improvement" business.
Which is how he came to ask what I wanted to be.
"I want to be leaner, stronger, with better endurance," I told him. "I don't want more mass." I thought for a moment. "And seeing better...that sounds good, too."
He looked up from taking notes and nodded. "I can help," he said.
And so he did.