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Chronic Briefs

Listen, chuckle and not even realize you're learning about arthritis.

“Laughter is the best medicine.” We’ve all heard this axiom, but radio host Dan Malito, who suffers from Rheumatoid Arthritis, took this as a call to action. Hoping to provide relief to himself and others who suffer from a debilitating illness, he uses his unique take on the world to make people laugh, cry, and think.

Dan’s history with disease started early – he was eleven years old when, after two years of flu-like symptoms — including fever, chills, and joint aches —his parents finally heard the diagnosis: juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA), now known as juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA).

“My disease has been fairly aggressive,” he says. ”It took until four or five years ago to find medicines that work for me.” The road’s been rough and long, but also strange and poignant. Dan has endured high doses of prednisone to calm arthritis flare-ups, which caused a 90-pound weight gain. Large and definitely not in charge, Dan was blown-up, fed-up, and thought about cashing out. With no other recourse, when someone mentioned that writing and keeping a journal could help, Dan, now 38, sat down and started writing. That was one blog and a book ago, (So Young: A Life Lived with Rheumatoid Arthritis), and it’s still coming out. Of everywhere.

The Telling Company is proud to share Dan’s stories with you through these podcasts. In Dan’s words, “I try to find common ground through humor so people can see that the handicapped really do have the same issues as other people. Hopefully people will listen, chuckle and not even realize they’re learning about arthritis at the same time.”

CHRONIC BRIEFS – WELCOME

Welcome to the first episode of "Chronic Briefs", a comedic look at living with Rheumatoid Arthritis. In this episode, Daniel Malito enlightens the challenges of getting dressed with his artificial joints.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 2

In this episode of "Chronic Briefs", Daniel talks about his experience with physical therapy and his first physical therapist, George.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 3

In this episode of “Chronic Briefs”, Daniel opens up about the host of symptoms  visited upon the chronically ill when subjected to modern pharmaceuticals.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 4

In this episode of "Chronic Briefs", Daniel explains basic bathroom etiquette and the phrase "examine your zipper".

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 5

In this episode of "Chronic Briefs", Daniel introduces us to the agony and the ecstasy of handicap parking.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 6

In this episode of “Chronic Briefs”, Daniel introduces us to the German word Schadenfreude, and the challenges that some folks face sharing the same airspace as someone who is handicapped.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 7

In this episode of “Chronic Briefs”, Daniel takes a look back at one of the alternative medical treatments he has endured as a 30-year alum of autoimmune disease.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 8

In this episode of “Chronic Briefs”, Daniel discusses the most awkward chapter of middle school health class... sex.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 9

In our holiday-themed episode of “Chronic Briefs”, Daniel discusses the challenges with relatives and gifts.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 10

In our New Year themed episode of “Chronic Briefs”, Daniel discusses the joys of insurance, deductibles and the trip of the pharmacy.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 11

In this episode of “Chronic Briefs”, Daniel discusses his 40th birthday! And all the aches and pains that go along with it.

CHRONIC BRIEFS – Episode 12

In this episode, Daniel closes out the first year of this series with a pass through the seasons.

Dan Malito (Author, Creator) Ever since the age of nine, when Daniel Malito was ripped from the happy childhood life he knew by a then little-known illness called Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, he has been fighting, learning, laughing, and growing. The disease happened to coincide with a move by Daniel’s parents, and as you can imagine, it made life difficult for a boy who was growing up in a brand new town – especially when missing school was a common occurrence. Inevitably, this led to a social life that was, let’s say, less than desirable, and Daniel had to learn how to defend himself without the use of his physically infirmed body.  So, he nurtured his brain and his wit, and developed ways to use words as powerfully as some use fists.

Daniel Malito has been writing about his life with rheumatoid arthritis for ten years now, with a successful blog, a noted autobiography, and a plethora of accolades and awards. He even found a woman willing to help him carry his life’s burden, and starting a family is now another accomplishment he can add to the list – and maybe the most daunting one yet! With a skewed but poignant take on the world, the future will certainly hold something great, and if it doesn’t, he’ll do what he always does – make sure everyone is laughing along with him!

 

Stacey Cahn (Creative Producer) comes to TTC from a distinguished background in storytelling. She spent over 20 years in the trenches of broadcast news, first as an anchor on the NBC Radio Networks, then as producer at the CNBC and Fox News Channels when both were first launched before segueing into the corporate video world with “Fortune 500” clients. In 2009, Stacey founded “Time in a Bottle Video Productions” to help others to tell their stories; personal stories for posterity, business stories to help companies distinguish themselves from the competition, and  “Day in the Life Video” documentaries to help the wrongfully injured tell their stories in personal injury lawsuits.

Stacey found herself in the middle of a story when her lower Manhattan apartment building shook on the morning of September 11, 2001. She and her husband watched the twin towers of the World Trade Center crumble from their bedroom window right across the street. “What we went through is nothing compared to what we saw. Stacey sees life through a different lens and brings this perspective and understanding to every project. Capturing and preserving stories has become a mission. Stacey has been honored several times for her work but considers winning a track and field relay at Cornell University her “most astounding achievement.” As her husband’s Grandma Cele used to say, “a day is wasted without laughter.” She lived to be 99.

Press

Everyday Health.com
10 Arthritis Blogs We Can’t Stop Reading