Author Topic: Anybody know how Bono almost died?  (Read 19096 times)

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Offline flyguy

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #30 on: January 02, 2018, 03:22:01 PM »
I think that's an incredibly valid theory, and one I considered myself ... however, upon reading interviews where this subject was brought up, along with the liner notes from SOE, not to mention the band's requisite thanks section of those same notes, I honestly believe the references (while very elliptical) are honestly not about terrorism but definitely a physical health scare linked to something medically askew, if not heart or stroke-related.

It's also worth noting from previous band interviews that they mentioned the scare in question happening over/during the Christmas holidays of 2016 (into 2017), which might explain why Bono was not seen busking in public that year.

The specific comments in the liner notes go as follows:

"LAST WINTER I WAS ON THE RECEIVING END OF A SHOCK TO THE SYSTEM MYSELF, A SHOCK THAT LEFT ME CLINGING ON TO MY OWN LIFE LIKE A RAFT. NOW LOTS OF US HAVE A BRUSH WITH MORTALITY AT SOME STAGE, WHETHER ITíS OUR OWN OR SOMEONE DEAR TO US. ITíS AN ARRESTING EXPERIENCE. I WAS ARRESTED.
FACING A WALL WITH MY HANDS UP OVER MY HEAD... THE FORCE SCREAMING AT ME NOT TO MOVE.
I WONíT DWELL IN IT OR ON IT. I DONíT WANT TO NAME IT. IN A REALITY TV WORLD OF MINOR MAJOR MELODRAMA I CAN SPARE EVERYONE THAT. WHETHER ITíS PHYSICAL OR MENTAL OR EMOTIONAL SO MANY OF US HIT A WALL AT SOME POINT IN OUR LIFE."

Later in the notes, under the acknowledgements section, Bono gives a nod to doctors:

"TO THE GREAT PHYSICIANS Ė IS THERE A GREATER SERVICE ON THIS EARTH THAN KEEPING PEOPLE ALIVE?"

Then, in his interview with Jann Wenner in Rolling Stone, Bono elaborates slightly further - mentioning it being a physical issue and the why he wouldn't talk about it in specifics:

=================================================

WENNER: One thing this record seems to be about is survival. The survival of the world, and of our political system. But let's talk about your own survival. In the middle of recording, you had a near-death experience. Tell me what happened.

BONO: Well, I mean, I don't want to.


WENNER: I understand. I had my own experience recently. People want to ask about my health, and I'm hesitant to talk about it. Why do I feel that way? Am I ashamed? Is it weakness I am trying to cover up?

BONO: It's just a thing that . . . people have these extinction events in their lives; it could be psychological or it could be physical. And, yes, it was physical for me, but I think I have spared myself all that soap opera. Especially with this kind of celebrity obsession with the minutiae of peoples' lives Ė I have got out of that. I want to speak about the issue in a way that lets people fill in the blanks of what they have been through, you know? It's one thing if you were talking about it in a place of record like Rolling Stone, but by the time it gets to your local tabloid it is just awful. It becomes the question that everyone is asking.


WENNER: But let's talk about it in an elliptical sense. I mean, it's central to the album.

BONO: Yeah. This political apocalypse was going on in Europe and in America, and it found a perfect rhyme with what was going on in my own life. And I have had a hail of blows over the years. You get warning signs, and then you realize that you are not a tank, as Ali says. Edge has this thing that he says about me, that I look upon my body as an inconvenience.

WENNER: In 2000, you had a throat-cancer scare, right?

BONO: No, it was a check for it. One of the specialists wanted to biopsy, which would have risked my vocal cords Ė and it turned out OK.

WENNER: A few years ago, I visited you in the hospital with your arm in some kind of George Washington Bridge structure.

BONO: After my bike accident, pretending it was a car crash.

WENNER: It looked bad, and then the latest thing. That is a lot of brushes with death.

BONO: There is comic tragedy with a bike accident in Central Park Ė it is not exactly James Dean. But the thing that shook me was that I didn't remember it. That was the amnesia; I have no idea how it happened. That left me a little uneasy, but the other stuff has just finally nailed me. It was like, "Can you take a hint?"

(Later, in that same interview, Bono referred to how the incident in general led him to have a crisis of faith, one in which he described himself as "suffocating", and - again - there's a reference to healthcare and how he feels fortunate to have survived something that others couldn't or didn't)

BONO: ...But, you know, people have had so much worse to deal with, so that is another reason not to talk about it. You demean all the people who, you know, never made it through that or couldn't get health care!

WENNER: Do you feel like you lucked out?

BONO: Lucked out? I am the f****** luckiest man on Earth. I didn't think that I had a fear of a fast exit. I thought it would be inconvenient 'cause I have a few albums to make and kids to see grow up and this beautiful woman and my friends and all of that. But I was not that guy. And then suddenly you are that guy. And you think, "I don't want to leave here. There's so much more to do." And I'm blessed. Grace and some really clever people got me through, and my faith is strong.

===========================================

So yeah, as much as I initially figured it had something to do with the terror attack in France, I think these exchanges spell out pretty clearly that something went very physically askew with him. My honest guess is it had something to do with his heart (hence the whole poetic reference to being "arrested.") If I were to speculate - and yes, we all do that, but I'm basing this on what I know and see and read - would not be surprised if the doctors discovered B was harboring either an aneurysm or a major arterial blockage, or what is now more commonly referred to as a "widowmaker."

In the rare instances where these blockages are successfully treated surgically, the people suffering them are often rushed to the hospital in a state of imminent death, but more often than not don't know it, simply because this type of blockage can manifest as something innocuous, like a mild pain in the back or a severe headache or lightheadedness. The discovery of these types of blockages have grown more common in recent years, but a lot of people who have them don't know they have them and - as a result - don't survive.

The most disconcerting thing, in my humble opinion, is Bono's refusal to discuss the specifics of what happened. Is it is his right to keep it private? Of course. But part of me believes that it has something to do with ego and pride (i.e. the whole "who wants to know a rock star isn't immortal?" thing - which is silly), or perhaps it's due to a concern about not appearing healthy ahead of the upcoming SOE tour (i.e. - for insurance purposes, and yes I know that sounds cynical, but hey ... as modern headlines prove, there are still plenty of people in show business who don't care about anything other than the bottom line) ... but I really believe an opportunity is being missed here wherein (if Bono did indeed suffer a cardiac episode) he could play a role in helping raise awareness of a health issue that affects millions of Americans and might encourage others to get themselves checked out and/or healthy.

Then again, he's the lead singer of U2 ... not a spokesman for heart health, nor would I imagine he'd want to become one at this stage.

(exhale) Jesus. I gotta not drink so much coffee. Anyway, I covered a lot of ground there. It was not out of an intention to disprove a theory, but to flesh out a little bit more what I was explaining in my previous post re: how this really does sound like it was a medical emergency caught in the nick of time.

Offline jgrooms

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #31 on: January 02, 2018, 05:01:12 PM »
Maybe he almost drowned.. Red Flag Day anyone?

Offline summerholly

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #32 on: January 02, 2018, 06:53:46 PM »
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The most disconcerting thing, in my humble opinion, is Bono's refusal to discuss the specifics of what happened. Is it is his right to keep it private? Of course. But part of me believes that it has something to do with ego and pride (i.e. the whole "who wants to know a rock star isn't immortal?" thing - which is silly), or perhaps it's due to a concern about not appearing healthy ahead of the upcoming SOE tour (i.e. - for insurance purposes, and yes I know that sounds cynical, but hey ... as modern headlines prove, there are still plenty of people in show business who don't care about anything other than the bottom line) ... but I really believe an opportunity is being missed here wherein (if Bono did indeed suffer a cardiac episode) he could play a role in helping raise awareness of a health issue that affects millions of Americans and might encourage others to get themselves checked out and/or healthy.

Then again, he's the lead singer of U2 ... not a spokesman for heart health, nor would I imagine he'd want to become one at this stage.

(exhale) Jesus. I gotta not drink so much coffee. Anyway, I covered a lot of ground there. It was not out of an intention to disprove a theory, but to flesh out a little bit more what I was explaining in my previous post re: how this really does sound like it was a medical emergency caught in the nick of time.

Interesting about an opportunity missed to educate people if it was some sort of health scare.  Celebrities/ sports stars sometimes go out of their way to talk about their health scares whether it be mental or physical to profile issues that can kill.  However I could imagine at this point in time as an older still energetic frontman of U2 and a tour coming up the last thing you want is people focusing on if you are going to expire during a performance especially if it was heart related. 

Offline Luzita

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #33 on: January 02, 2018, 06:58:25 PM »
This is all speculation but a heart attack sounds very plausible to me. I seem to recall reading somewhere (maybe U2 by U2) that Bono has been diagnosed with an eccentric heart; i.e. some sort of arrhythmia. Donít know much about heart health but maybe that relates also. I think the reason he doesnít want to talk about it is because of how it affected him emotionally. From the things heís said he was very frightened and upset with God for nearly taking him out.


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Offline connorfin22

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #34 on: January 03, 2018, 01:57:10 AM »
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Here is a video created by a dumbass who thinks RBW is actually about wolves.

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That was so stupid. You can tell the person who made that video doesn't actually pay attention to the music.

Offline mille100piedi

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #35 on: January 03, 2018, 06:36:31 AM »
I don't understand why Bono is hiding his health issues. I was not surprised when he said he has glaucoma because I knew that there was something wrong with his eyes many years ago, just looking at them, I suffer of a rare incurable disorder so I very often understand when there is something wrong with a person health. I understand he wants to help starving people in Africa, but why not rising awareness for glaucoma or any other issue he might had experienced? His last health issue probably was related to his heart. Maybe he doesn't want to show his weakness and probably doesn't want to accept them himself. But he should put aside his pride and help people that maybe are living very close to him that might have the same issue. I live in Ireland and I know many Irish people that don't like him, I think if he could focus more in the difficulties that ordinary people may encounter especially in his own country he would attract more sympathy from his Irish fellows. I personally don't do any charity for people in difficulties that are living very far away from me because I simply do not trust big organizations. I do prefer act locally and I have been helped by people that suffer of my same health condition, it is just thanks to them that I was able to get a diagnosis. Now it is my turn and I am helping people that have just been diagnosed, I also teach them how to cope in everyday life.

Offline durk

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #36 on: January 03, 2018, 10:39:07 AM »
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This is all speculation but a heart attack sounds very plausible to me. I seem to recall reading somewhere (maybe U2 by U2) that Bono has been diagnosed with an eccentric heart; i.e. some sort of arrhythmia. Donít know much about heart health but maybe that relates also. I think the reason he doesnít want to talk about it is because of how it affected him emotionally. From the things heís said he was very frightened and upset with God for nearly taking him out.


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well - he certainly does have an eccentric heart

Offline Luzita

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #37 on: January 03, 2018, 12:20:19 PM »
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This is all speculation but a heart attack sounds very plausible to me. I seem to recall reading somewhere (maybe U2 by U2) that Bono has been diagnosed with an eccentric heart; i.e. some sort of arrhythmia. Donít know much about heart health but maybe that relates also. I think the reason he doesnít want to talk about it is because of how it affected him emotionally. From the things heís said he was very frightened and upset with God for nearly taking him out.


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well - he certainly does have an eccentric heart

Yes, he made that joke himself. Thatís why I remember it.


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Offline DrDoom171

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #38 on: January 03, 2018, 02:31:26 PM »
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"LAST WINTER I WAS ON THE RECEIVING END OF A SHOCK TO THE SYSTEM MYSELF, A SHOCK THAT LEFT ME CLINGING ON TO MY OWN LIFE LIKE A RAFT. NOW LOTS OF US HAVE A BRUSH WITH MORTALITY AT SOME STAGE, WHETHER ITíS OUR OWN OR SOMEONE DEAR TO US. ITíS AN ARRESTING EXPERIENCE. I WAS ARRESTED.
FACING A WALL WITH MY HANDS UP OVER MY HEAD... THE FORCE SCREAMING AT ME NOT TO MOVE.
I WONíT DWELL IN IT OR ON IT. I DONíT WANT TO NAME IT. IN A REALITY TV WORLD OF MINOR MAJOR MELODRAMA I CAN SPARE EVERYONE THAT. WHETHER ITíS PHYSICAL OR MENTAL OR EMOTIONAL SO MANY OF US HIT A WALL AT SOME POINT IN OUR LIFE."

Thanks for all of that info, flyguy.  It sure sounds to me like he was hinting at specifically a heart attack/cardiac arrest because he states "it was an arresting experience....I was arrested."  He also mentions a shock....perhaps needing a defibrillator?  That would be very serious indeed and certainly a health scare where many people don't survive.  Just pure speculation, but Bono's choice of words placed that thought in my mind.

Offline michaelz

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #39 on: January 03, 2018, 05:10:05 PM »
Interesting theories.  Overall he's certainly slowed down progressively over the past few years.  At the JT 2017 tour, he was relatively stationary and slow to get around. 

That being said, cardiac arrest seems like the most plausible explanation and perhaps heís had a history with heart issues. Curiously, on August 21, 2011, sourcing an Irish Independent article, the Rolling Stone reported that Bono was treated for a heart scare in France.  The original news story was published by Reuters:

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I would expect that Reuters  had a very credible source / sources prior to publishing.

However, the very next day,  the story was retracted following a denial issued by Bono himself:

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Perhaps we are getting closer to the truth... Wish him the best of health.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2018, 07:31:03 PM by michaelz »

Offline summerholly

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #40 on: January 03, 2018, 06:07:29 PM »
You would think that if he had had a heart attack that had involved being shocked back to life it would have been a very hard thing to keep under wraps given the number of people at a hospital that would have been involved  It also takes quite awhile to come back from something like that.

Offline Argo

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #41 on: January 03, 2018, 06:22:41 PM »
I doubt it was as serious as a heart attack. And agree it would have been hard to keep that under wraps. Could be a lot of things. Maybe one day we will find out. Good thing is he seems to be in decent health now and we have a tour ahead of us.

Offline summerholly

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #42 on: January 03, 2018, 06:55:49 PM »
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Good thing is he seems to be in decent health now and we have a tour ahead of us.

Lucky you! It has been years and years since they came to Australia!

Offline Argo

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #43 on: January 03, 2018, 07:47:14 PM »
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Good thing is he seems to be in decent health now and we have a tour ahead of us.

Lucky you! It has been years and years since they came to Australia!

I live in Asia so am in an even worse boat. I still need to travel to Aust or elsewhere to see them, even if they do go there. Doesn't mean I am not happy that there is a tour ahead though as always interesting to see what gets played, hear (recordings of) new songs live etc.

Offline summerholly

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Re: Anybody know how Bono almost died?
« Reply #44 on: January 03, 2018, 09:22:41 PM »
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Good thing is he seems to be in decent health now and we have a tour ahead of us.

Lucky you! It has been years and years since they came to Australia!


I live in Asia so am in an even worse boat. I still need to travel to Aust or elsewhere to see them, even if they do go there. Doesn't mean I am not happy that there is a tour ahead though as always interesting to see what gets played, hear (recordings of) new songs live etc.

Yes I do enjoy watching the videos that get made of their tours!  Yeah I live outback Aust so also have to do significant traveling even if they did come!