Night Music: The Velvet Underground, “Heroin”

So, a fantastic actor died because of his need for drugs. That’s horrible for his kids and his family and everyone really, but he was a drug addict, a junkie. Every dose he took meant he was courting death in some way, creating potential horror for his kids and family and everyone really. While the outcome was tragic, it was also pretty much predictable and pathetic.

Lou Reed got the why of all this pretty much perfectly in this VU song. Using is fucked up, but what if it’s your wife?

PS. The video is fun to watch, from the Factory, but it messes with the song.

3 thoughts on “Night Music: The Velvet Underground, “Heroin”

  1. Interesting. Just read that LeVar Burton tweeted fairly similar sentiments and was crucified over it. Hail freedom of speech at Rock Remnants!

    • LeVar made a joke that was flip. That got him in trouble. His subsequent point that it’s not cool to shoot drugs when you have kids seems sound to me, though he took heat for that, too.

      I guess if we look at addiction as a disease then PSH and all the other drug addicts aren’t responsible for what they have done, but I have had dear friends who were addicts and could not escape it and who died, and even so it doesn’t seem right to say they had no choice. It is demeaning to say they had no choice, even if the choice wasn’t a direct one (I wanna be an addict.)

      In any case, I loved my departed friends and I loved Hoffmann’s acting and I don’t think it is insensitive to point out that what they did was hateful.

      • In this story at Slate, Why Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s Death Terrifies Me, the science writer Seth Mnookin tells his own story about being a teen junkie, getting clean and staying clean, but being aware of the powerful pull of triggers that have the power to suck you back in. In fact, that they seem to have sucked Hoffman back in after years of sobriety is what terrifies Mnookin.

        He reminds us (me), that the dividing line between being an addict and not being an addict can be a very sharp one. That this disease, which has more in common with an addiction to dangerous sports activities than it does to illnesses like cancer, offers some people some powerful mojo that seduces them into trading their conscious life for something much more shabby or worse.

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