New York superclub Pacha are to host a Sunday afternoon party next weekend (May 1) to help raise funds for Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s research.

Team Fox members and party promoters Beth Hochstein and Sharon Greif said the event will be ‘a tribute to dancing and its positive effects on people with Parkinson’s’ as well as highlighting the fact that it’s ‘definitely not only a disease of the elderly as it affects thousands of people under the age of 40.’

Both issues were superbly highlighted by British former stuntman Tim Lawrence ten years earlier when he appeared in a British TV documentary about his own experiences coping with the dreadful disease by using MDMA.

Developing Parkinson’s at the age of just 34, his bodily functions steadily froze up while he also suffered appalling side effects from the medication he was prescribed before he discovered that using ecstasy transformed his prognosis.

“Like many people who contract the illness early in life, Tim suffers just as badly from the drug he takes to combat the disease, which gives him wild, flailing movements called dyskinesias,” the liner notes for the BBC science documentary explained.

“However, within 90 minutes of taking an Ecstasy tablet, Tim is able to get off the floor and perform backflips, somersaults and swallow-dives in a gym.”

Writing about his battles with the illness soon after, he was equally outspoken.

“In the Chinese language, there is only one word for both Catastrophe and Opportunity,” said Tim (in a length text headlined ‘A personal experience of Parkinson's disease & MDMA’: )

“Parkinson's disease immobilised me to the point where I could not wipe tears from my face. Even my blood became heavy,” he described.

“So now imagine a moment in time - a physical oasis - where I can move fluidly again.. This is what happens when I take Ecstasy. I can trust my body once more to do all I ask of it. For those few hours I am in state of symmetry that goes completely unnoticed by those around me who are ignorant to my condition. I am normal,” said Tim.

“This experience has been so profound that for fleeting moments I have been able to forget there is anything wrong with me; that I have Parkinson's. They are incredible flashes - not even reality rushing back in to remind me can detract from those peaks of body consciousness.” (May 1, 3pm-7pm: tickets cost US$75 each) (Symptoms: ‘If you have Parkinson's disease, your muscles may feel tense. Due to the stiffness, you may have trouble performing simple everyday tasks.
For example, you may find it difficult to turn around, get out of a chair and roll over in bed. Fine finger movements, facial expressions and body language may also become difficult . . .’)

Article by Jonty Skrufff

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