LARadio  Archives - 13 Years Ago Today 

 

“My Name is LARP and I’m an Alcoholic” 

(April 22, 2008) When I was researching my first book, Los Angeles Radio People, it was before email had exploded. All of the research and other work was done with the help of word-of-mouth, telephone calls and mail. Some of the stories on what happened to former LARP was disheartening. I found a once very active jock/pd living in a box on Vermont near Hollywood Boulevard. He was a full-blown alcoholic. Another big name got hooked on drugs and was in and out of rehab without ever getting clean before he died. If you’re looking for names, forget it.

Yesterday I received an email for another popular and successful LARP who has a positive outcome from his drug and alcohol addiction. He found a 12-Step Program, turned his life around, and he has been clean and sober for better than two decades. When I first read the message you are about to read, I reflected that in 11 years I’ve never run anything anonymously. Well, we’re about ready to break the rule. His story might touch someone in need. His name is Thomas W.  

“Like many of my colleagues in broadcasting, for me, radio and alcohol went together like Dodger Dogs and Baseball.   

All my life, I have always felt like an outsider looking in. Two things made me feel okay, being on the radio and alcohol. And radio was the perfect environment for my drinking to flower. One of my program directors used to actually pay me to drink with him [at Martoni's, the venerable Italian restaurant/bar in Hollywood that was the radio and record company hang for several decades]. I actually put it on my time sheet, under his direction; he did not like to drink alone! What a great job! This was heaven.   

Until it became hell, that is. Somewhere along the way, I lost the matter of choice about alcohol.  Soon, my entire world was built around drinking. I won't tell you the whole story here, but I tried to do something about it myself countless times, and could not. I was a daily drinker for thirteen years.  

Eventually, however, I found a few guys who used to drink like I did, and really understood how it was for me. I thought I was the only one. And, they seem to have found a way of living, a way of being, that enabled them to not have to drink. I started hanging out with them, and learned the format for this new program, [pun intended]. Somehow I have managed to not drink alcohol for a very long time now, more than twenty years to be exact.   

Of course there is more to the story than that. Once I stopped drinking, I soon came face to face with all the feelings that made me need to drink to prevent me from feeling. But over time, I found that this new format gave me tools to help me cope with a world that I cannot control. While my not drinking muscle is strong now, living with some degree of peace inside a world outside my control still requires a daily application of the things I was taught by this group of men and women ‘in whom the problem had been solved.’ 

Surely some of your other LARP readers have similarly recovered from the ‘seemingly hopeless state of mind and body" that some of us have come to describe as alcoholism.  Some of us have found each other.  If you would like to find us, write to: soberjocks@gmail.com   

Or, if you find yourself, like we did, unable to stop drinking [or doing some other mind-altering behavior], and would like to hear a little bit about how we were able to finally lick this thing, send us a note.  Your anonymity will be scrupulously protected.” – Thomas W.  

 




 
For 25 years, LARadio has tracked thousands of personalities who have entertained
us in the Southland from 1957-present.
These pages were never meant to be a life-time resume/bio but rather a snapshot of each on-air personality –
where they came from, where and when they worked in Southern California, and where they are now.


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For 25 years LARadio chronicled the news of Southern California radio and the personalities who populated it. Alan Oda was editor for much of that time. With the closing of LARadio he opened a weekly blog, mostly about radio at ayodaradio.blogspot.com After 25 years, LARadio came to an end in  2020
Read the final column by clicking the curtain 

Ladies of LARP Calendar in 2007


Early LARadio was dominated by men. In the 70s women began to find an important place - on and off-air - in creating the rich history of LARadio. In 2007, we saluted the women in LARadio with a calendar that included the names of the LARP who were having birthdays that month. Calendar was sponsored by Mt. Wilson Broadcasting. You can access it at this link.




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