This morning, Christopher Rude returned on the air to his 680/The Fan Rude Awakening morning show after four months recuperating from throat cancer.
Soon after 6 a.m., the veteran radio guy said, “Where were we?” He thanked WAGA’s Buck Langford for covering for him. And he teased Perry Laurentino, of course, for complaining about added duties.
After Leo Mazzone said Perry “was under a lot of stress,” Rude scoffed. “I’m laying there dying and he’s under stress. Give me a break!”
Rude was diagnosed last year with a tumor behind his throat. He disclosed the news to his listeners last August. He was able to stay on air during chemotherapy but he eventually had to take time off during radiation. His last show was in October.
“I’ve been to hell and back,” Rude said a few moments later. “And I’m not talking about Helen, one of Perry’s favorite vacation spots.”
“This cancer thing,” Rude said, “I do not recommend this to anybody. If you can avoid it, by all means. That’s one team you do not want to join.”
He noted he lost 35 pounds and can no longer grow a beard. “When you have a face like mine, that’s a bad thing,” he said.
“You look 10-15 years younger,” Mazzone said.
Rude then bemoaned that he returned on a sports day that was kind of dead. And he was bummed he missed the initial Tiger Woods mess. “We’re leading in the medal count in the Olympics,” Rude said, “and that’s it.”
During a later break, he said his last radiation treatment was November-December. He compared it to “laying out on the beach for three days without suntan lotion and somebody rubs it with a Brillo pad. That’s radiation. It was the neck and the nose down to the upper shoulders.”
Rude said he received thousands of emails in the interim and how many people has gone through the same thing.
“You find out who your friends are,” Rude added. Then he said Perry didn’t call him.
Perry noted that Rude is a private guy and didn’t want to bother him. “I want to die a lonely, old man,” Rude cracked. More seriously, he added “I want to thank my girlfriend Darcy and my [eight-year-old] daughter Zoey who stood up in the face of an awful period of time, worst time of my life.”