Surviving cancer at Studio 54

Stefon reminded me that after the New York Times published my article on surviving cancer, I was invited to Studio 54 where I danced with a soap opera star at ABC and did not snort cocaine in the men’s room. Stefon’s cued my remembrance  when he said, “If you’re drunk in Midtown doing cheap coke off your laundry cart, I have just the place for you.”








What makes this Sunday morning different from all other mornings (let alone Sunday mornings) is that it is 6:24 and I have already decided to give up on today—not go outside, watch recorded Saturday Night Live videos on YouTube, wait for President Trump to tell me that SNL is not funny, and reminisce about the good old days when in my youth the New York Times occasionally published my stuff.


A New Lease on Life


I am 28 years old and I have cancer. Anger comes before anything else. There are times that the anger becomes overwhelming, turns to frustrated rage, because there is no one to be angry at. I can curse God, which I’ve done many times, but it is unsatisfying because God doesn’t shout back, Crying helps.



A sudden moment of nostalgia occasioned my decision to give up on today and write about how an op-ed piece I published in 1976 about my treatment for cancer resulted in my receiving an invitation to a black tie party at Studio 54 from Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Henry Kissinger.



The origin of my invitation from Jackie Kennedy probably came from a high-paid public relations consultant working on a special project for Women’s Wear Daily. There was no way at all that any ration person would invite me to a black tie event at Studio 54. After all, I had described in detail the nausea, the vomiting, the Depression, the loss of hair that came with radiation treatment for cancer.

That is why public relations consultants are paid the big bucks. Their talent is lack of rationality. Somehow the doyen of the improbable knew her mark.

I borrowed Andrew  Jay Schwartzman’s tux (which he claimed decades later would not fit either of us). Andy is also my media consultant. Off I went on the train from then badly=decayed on Riverside Drive a few doors from where Lionel Trilling and the monster wife lived.




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