Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roland

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Creedence Clearwater Revival
I am a child of the 60’s.

I was, and am, an enemy of the state. I was in the streets over civil rights and Viet Nam. I embraced radical politics.

I became a federal fugitive for running guys to Canada to avoid the draft. I was beaten by cops for burning my draft card.

My heroes were radicals and rock stars.

My generation extolled sex and drugs and rock and roll.

Unfortunately for me, I missed out on most of the sex, was not impressed with drugs, and couldn’t play a lick of rock and roll.

Turns out I was tone deaf and could not play an instrument. Still, I would have loved to have been a rock star. Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, John Lennon, John Fogerty, were my role models.

While I got laid now and again, my life was nothing like Woodstock. And my familiarity with drugs was very limited. Never tried LSD, hated pot, ‘shrooms didn’t work for me, and I wasn’t about to try heroin.

In the 80s I did become an enthusiastic consumer of cocaine, but quit once it became more expensive than the mortgage on my house in Malibu. At one point i was doing $300 per day of the stuff! I managed to quit cold turkey, but many could not, and it ruined their lives.

I am now 70. To be honest, I never thought I’d be alive this long. I rode Harleys, flew airplanes, even got into a bar fight now and again. None of that killed me, but in 1998 I was diagnosed with cancer. Not just any cancer, but one that was so rare there were only 20 cases in the literature. An adenocarcinoma of the parotid (salivary) gland. None who had it lived beyond five years of being diagnosed. i figured I was done. I spent as much time as I could with my adopted son, Mac, who was only 10 at the time. i started putting my affairs in order.

Then, I got pissed! No way was I going to check out without making the most noise any human ever had. I had a mission: Animal Rights. And I had not yet begun to advocate for the animals. If cancer were going to kill me. I was going to make it as hard as possible for cancer to win.

They told me that the cancer would return in situs, in my brain, lungs, or liver. They had me getting MRIs and CT scans every couple of months for five years, All of it out of my pocket, as I didn’t have health insurance. In 2003 they found a suspicious spot on my lung. They said the cancer had returned, and I underwent a lung resection. They removed the lower lobe of my right lung.

Without health insurance, it cost me a fortune. Almost $300,000. I had to sell my house to pay the hospital bills

Seems I won. I have been cancer free ever since. But it cost me everything.

Animal Rights actually saved my life, because it gave me a purpose that was more important than life itself.

My life has been one extended political campaign.

From my very first campaign as a 12 year old in Brooklyn, working to re-elect Averill Harriman as governor of New York to supporting Bernie Sanders today, I have been a Democrat.

In 1976 I became a professional Democratic strategist. I have had clients in every election cycle since, from candidates for local office to presidential contenders.

This year the mold is broken. If Bernie Sanders is not the Democratic nominee, I will be working for Donald Trump.

As a volunteer!

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12 thoughts on “Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roland

  1. What a heartwarming story. God bless you for
    your love of animals transcending your own
    needs in the most trying time of your life.
    Truly inspiring and I thank you for sharing this with your myriad of followers.

    Like

    • i advocate Berners to support Jill Stein if they vote in red states or in overwhelmingly blue states (like California). Trump will carry red states and Hillary will carry deep blue states. But in battleground states I urge everyone to support Trump. Voting for Trump is only helpful in those states where he might be able to defeat Hillary, so called “battleground” or purple states. Purple states include Florida, Ohio, Colorado, New Hampshire, Virginia, Nevada. Depending on the polls, the list may grow to include some traditional blue states, like New Mexico, North Carolina, Michigan, Minnesota.

      Like

  2. Oh Wow While I have always admired you for being such a staunch activist for the animals, I had no idea about the battles you have so courageously faced and won. You are a true hero! Plus, really admire the fact that you chose to become a parent through adoption and not by bringing another baby into this darned world. I am sure your son must be a fine young man by now. Great respect for you !!

    Like

  3. WOW!!!  Quite a life you’ve lived!  Congrats on beating cancer and for being such a staunch animal advocate!  You’re my hero, Roland!!!

    Liked by 2 people

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