Joyce 馃悵 Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

5 years ago 路 3 min. reading time 路 ~10 路

Joyce 馃悵 blog
Those Weren't the Days

Those Weren't the Days


Succorstsl Personal Branding

Joyce § Bowen
Sut ent Amis Babee Ary Soc atward

ew dees con/gtorce bowen


Youth was an interesting time. 聽Do me a favor and play this while you read.


Now you might think I was a real pothead because I loved this song. 聽I wasn鈥檛 聽I just loved the damned song. 聽I hated the feeling that marijuana gave me.

It was the era of, Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll,鈥 but my life was tied up in activism and putting a roof over my head. 聽I was sixteen and felt utterly alone. 聽I worked up to 80 hours a week; the owner of two donut shops shifting me from store聽to store to avoid paying me overtime.聽

A聽few years later,聽I traded those long hours to become a figurehead for a local drug rehab.聽聽I sucked at it but committed聽to performing various tasks for 18 months. 聽I did speaking engagements and did my best to work with those in the drug world. 聽I was old for 16 (when I first moved out of my聽parent鈥檚 house.) 聽I had already gone through my own stint with drugs and had sworn them off. 聽My salary? 聽My rent was paid ($100.00 a month), and I lived off surplus food. 聽At the time, surplus food was comprised of a spamlike meat, rice, peanut butter, tomato聽sauce, cheese, and a few other goodies. 聽It was a boon when speaking engagements聽had buffets.

Working with those in the drug world put me in danger. 聽But danger was familiar for me. 聽Gangland聽figures were common at the time, and when two in the highest echelon walked into my apartment, I began to doubt the veracity of my position. 聽I was not unhappy when the man who had threatened me聽ended up murdered.聽 They identified聽him through his glass eye or so I was told.

I wrote a letter to the editor over my consternation in regards to Gangland鈥檚 grip on the area but was afraid to sign my name, so a friend did it for me.

White was the mayor of Boston. 聽I attended an event at an office for the Chinese Embassy in Boston and harassed the mayor鈥檚 wife over White鈥檚 new drug policy. 聽It was basically, 鈥淭hrow them all in jail, then throw away the key.鈥 聽It was my first encounter with a politician鈥檚 demeanor. 聽I never failed聽to pick out a politician again, nor was I ever invited to another such event. 聽And it suffices to say my protests against the policy fell on deaf ears. 聽I鈥檝e always seen Mayor White to be聽one of the architects聽of what became a nationwide policy.

Dreams of college had been quashed by my dilemma. 聽I learned through experience that education was necessary. 聽But I was not to experience that until much later. 聽I became fast friends with a local newspaper figure, and he dubbed me, 鈥淔lorence Night of the streets,鈥 as he shadowed me in my efforts.

We were looking for volunteers, but I was up against a prominent local figure who had sexually聽assaulted me months earlier.聽 It would be 20 years before聽I took him out.

Life was not kind in those days, and I found solace in dark music. 聽It suited my mood.

Copyright 2017 Joyce Bowen


About the Author: 聽Joyce Bowen is a freelance writer and public speaker. 聽Inquiries can be made at
Sobre el autor: Joyce Bowen es un聽escritor independiente聽y聽orador聽p煤blico. Las聽consultas pueden hacerse聽en


My Patron site. 聽Please support my work.



Bill Stankiewicz

5 years ago #11

Cool 馃槑
Wow--all these rants!! What great buzzes they would be! I look forward to reading your stuff, John Vaughan. I've got to get myself over to your blog and see what's there. I've read a few, but perhaps not enough.
Thanks Sara Jacobovici. Gusty? I felt pretty incompetent back them. I dissed powerful people simply because they were powerful. I should have learned more about cultivating relationships.
Kudos to your mother CityVP \ud83d\udc1d Manjit. I did the same with my sons. I was terrified at potential outcomes if I wasn't diligent. Nice to see others did the same. Motherhood is a crapshoot.

Sara Jacobovici

5 years ago #7

Dear Joyce \ud83d\udc1d Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee, nostalgia and music, quite the combination! Sounds like you've always been a gusty woman. Thanks for sharing.

CityVP Manjit

5 years ago #6

By the time Joplin and Hendrix died I was 9 and by the time Jim Morrison died I was 10. It is difficult to conceive that all three would be considered "boomers" today had they lived, which just goes to show how daft marketing categorizations really are. Last year we gave up a chance to make a tonne of money investing in an early round of Marijuana penny-stocks and by the time the Canadian government legalize pot, those family members on the West Coast are set to cash in big. No matter how beneficial medical marijuana might be and how profitable the investment offered to us eventually pans out, it just did not feel right to invest in pot but that has more to do with our upbringing. Ultimately it was my mothers will that she kept us out of reach of the drug gangs that ruled the town we lived in and made sure we did not associate with anyone who could possibly pass us a joint. Some people I knew were not so lucky with choosing to mix with that culture and they did not fare well but it is they who chose willingly to mix with that side of society. This is why I count my blessings that there was a strong person who defending and protected us. When I was young I would easily brought into life in the dark and dangerous side of town. Sometimes just one person can make a whole lot of difference. It is difficult to fight off this world alone unless one has a very strong constitution. Only a few are born with this constitution but that is also a blessing. Without that I would be living a totally different life and as a youngster I would be easy prey, and so that is why I respect people with a strong will and constitution, I was a beneficiary of such protection. That is why I use the word "blessings" a lot.
My opinions about pot have changed over the years. Time has mellowed me. I was so damned naive. I think we all are going to change the world in our younger years. I'm still trying, but I am far less hopeful about making any impacts.
I envy you your experiences.
Don't you just love snippets?
Probably the best is, When I got too big to beat, I guess I was not fun anymore, so I ended up on my own. I strove to make my parents proud at the time, but the more I succeeded, the more disappointed they seemed to get.

Pascal Derrien

5 years ago #1

A nice write up about a snippet of your life story :-)

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