Aerosmith’s Joe Perry Wanted To Be A Marine Biologist At WHOI… Wait, What?


Globe – The well-paced, well-plotted memoir, “Rocks: My Life In and Out of Aerosmith,” begins with Perry’s youth in Central Massachusetts in the 1950’s and ’60s. As a kid, Perry, who had a learning disability, struggled in school and suffered over it.

Beyond that, young Joe is portrayed as a nature lover/BB gun marksman/wannabe marine biologist, his parents promising him that if he gets his grades up he might be able to intern one summer at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution on Cape Cod.

“I was obsessed with learning from those men who explored the deep. I wanted to go deep,” Perry writes. And he would. Only in a different way.

This sounds like a skit on Saturday Night Live or something. Imagine Joe Perry as a marine biologist at WHOI in the ’70’s and ’80’s? He’d be drinking shots out of the fish tank he filled with Jack Daniel’s and snorting coke off a sea turtle’s ass. Next thing you know he wakes up on a ship in the Falkland islands with a random passed out penguin that’s wearing his puffy scarf around its head in the bunk with him.

It’s a good thing he ended up a rock star. Had he gone down the marine biologist path he probably would have contracted AIDS by shooting up with a needle he stole from the lab that extracts horseshoe crab blood. Who knows though, maybe he would have been successful and become known as the poor man’s Jacques Cousteau instead of being the poor man’s Keith Richards.

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