fat tony modern wisdom

How To Spend £1,000,000 On Drugs | Fat Tony on Modern Wisdom

Check out the Episode Page & Show Notes

Key Takeaways

  • Fat Tony bullshitted himself into becoming the musical director of a new club and this was how he first came upon real money
    • “I got swept away with it. I felt I had to be there every night, I had to take more drugs than everybody else, and that became who I was.” Fat Tony
  • For Tony, his drug habit was initially a tool to hide from his fears and artificially inflate his ego
    • “I always had to counteract the way I was feeling by taking those drugs or drinking on it because I always felt less-than. I never felt I deserved the success I had.” Fat Tony
  • The yes-people around Tony didn’t want him to get clean because drugs were their method of controlling Tony
  • “There was never a point where I wasn’t on drugs for 28 years. I was on something even when I slept.”Fat Tony
    • Every time Tony realized he had a problem he would change his dealer, location, or friend group
      • “It’s a proxy for making progress” – Chris Williamson
  • Out of all the drugs, Tony has tried, music is the best drug
    • Music is timeless and never ages; only the listeners age
  • “There was a God-given moment one evening I was in a club called ‘The Cross'” Fat Tony
    • His partner came to see him at the club and asked him, “What happened to you?” That question provided him the mental clarity to finally decide to seek professional help.
  • As of May 2020, Fat Tony is 13 years and 4 months clean
    • “Happiness is knowing that what I’ve got right now is enough”Fat Tony

Intro

  • Fat Tony (@thefattony), real name Tony Marnach, is one of the biggest DJ’s in London’s house music scene and “the most famous DJ you’ve never heard of”
  • Host: Chris Williamson (@ChrisWillx)

Early Career

  • Tony got kicked out of school and started going to nightclubs at 14
    • He was able to talk himself into any situation
  • While working the door at a nightclub called The Lyceum he constantly complained about how bad the music was 
    • Rusty, the owner, told him to bring his own music and that’s how Fat Tony got started DJing
  • Drugs are a huge part of the club culture and how he got introduced to his drug of choice: cocaine
  • At the time Tony didn’t have any future goals; partying was his entire life
    • Clubbing brought him out of the shell he built for himself as an overweight introverted teenager
    • “I remember saying to my mom I don’t want to live beyond 27”Fat Tony
  • Tony bullshitted himself into becoming the musical director of a new club and this job was how he finally got some real money
    • “I got swept away with it. I felt I had to be there every night, I had to take more drugs than everybody else, and that became who I was.” Fat Tony

Imposter Syndrome

  • Tony came upon huge sums of money as an eighteen year old with no knowledge of how to spend it wisely
    • He felt as if he didn’t deserve the money and success that was thrust on him
    • “I had no tools to deal with that. The only way I could deal with it was taking loads of drugs and riding it.” – Fat Tony
  • For Tony, his drug habit was initially a tool to hide from his fears and artificially inflate his ego
    • “I always had to counteract the way I was feeling by taking those drugs or drinking on it because I always felt less-than. I never felt I deserved the success I had.” Fat Tony
  • “What the drugs do is they stop you from being able to do that introspection. They don’t allow you to ask those questions because they create a buffer between what you see inside and how you feel.”Chris Williamson

Groupies or Leeches?

  • “When we get to that place we’re not on our own, we’ve got thirty other dickheads with us, and those other thirty dickheads are telling you what you want to hear” – Fat Tony
    • “They fuel what your beliefs are because you’re their way and means to get more”
  • The yes-people around Tony didn’t want him to get clean because drugs were their method of controlling Tony
    • “Everybody pretends that they don’t want you to be in that position, but you’re in that position because they can control you in that position” – Fat Tony

From Use to Abuse

  • “I would take cocaine, I would take downers to suppress the cocaine, I would drink alcohol to level the cocaine, and then I would take more. And then of course I discovered free-basing and crack and then I discovered crystal meth.”
    • Tony would take any drug that took him elsewhere than inside his mind and facing his demons
  • During the come-down after his first time taking crystal meth, Tony almost threw himself off a bridge because he thought he couldn’t cope
    • He then rationalized if he never came down from the drug, rather than not doing the drug, he wouldn’t have to feel like that
  • “There was never a point where I wasn’t on drugs for 28 years. I was on something even when I slept.”Fat Tony
    • “I would sleep in the recovery position because I was that scared that I was going to choke on my own vomit every night”
  • Every time Tony realized he had a problem he would change his dealer, location, or friend group
    • “It’s a proxy for making progress”Chris Williamson
    • It’s analogous to people who micromanage productivity hacks down to the minute yet have Twitter up while working
  • “Addiction isn’t something you can switch on and switch off”Fat Tony

The Thin Line of Sanity

  • While up for four days straight on a coke binge Tony entered a state of psychosis and had a party in his house with people that didn’t exist while real people started morphing into chairs and walls
    • “Life had suddenly gotten a lot darker because I was losing it” – Fat Tony
  • “You’re only a couple of travesties in your life away from something sending you down a spiral”Chris Williamson
    • “Even the most balanced among us, I think, are only five days of no sleep away from being completely mental”

Recovery

  • “There was a God-given moment one evening I was in a club called ‘The Cross'” Fat Tony
    • His partner came to see him at the club and asked him, “What happened to you?” That question provided him the mental clarity to finally decide to seek professional help.
    • “Suddenly I decided that I didn’t want to die and I got help and went away to treatment”
  • As of May 2020, Fat Tony is 13 years and 4 months clean
  • “I had nothing when I came into treatment at the end of my using. I had one pair of trainers and one tooth left” – Fat Tony
    • “Today I have everything. Today I have freedom, I have an amazing house, I have gifts beyond my wildest dreams.”
    • “I got a second chance at life, you know, and I’m not going to throw that away”
  • “Happiness is knowing that what I’ve got right now is enough”Fat Tony

Music

  • Out of all the drugs, Tony has tried, music is the best drug in the entire world
    • “It has the ability to transport you to anywhere in the world and to be with people that are no longer with us” – Fat Tony
  • Music is timeless and never ages; only listeners age
    • Tracks that have been with you for years isn’t just the music, it’s also the compounding memories of every experience you’ve had while listening to that track
  • “A DJ isn’t about playing music, it’s about reading a dance story” – Fat Tony
    • The people who DJ with a passion for music and treat it as a career will be the ones who make it. You don’t have to burn yourself like Tony did.

On Lockdown

  • “Something really creative and magical is going to come from this”Fat Tony
    • “It’s times like this stuff starts to grow and our juices flow in our brains”
  • Nightclubs will be the lowest priority places to be opened out of any other location
    • Tony doesn’t anticipate nightclubs to be opened until after 2020
  • If you are mentally struggling with lockdown try to change your perspective of it as being safely at home instead of being forced indoors
    • “Look at what you have got instead of what you haven’t got” – Fat Tony
    • “We make the best of what we got” – Fat Tony
  • “It’s highlighted, to me, the people that have a growth mindset and the people that don’t”Chris Williamson
    • “The people that have that growth mindset, I’m seeing flourishing in this situation, and the people that don’t, I’m seeing stagnating and even regressing”
  • Compensatory control:
    • In times of uncertainty, people will impose order and narratives on random occurrences because they feel their personal control is threatened
    • This psychological mechanism is probably responsible for the large uptick in personal narratives explaining the origins of COVID-19
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Notes By TD

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