Artie Lange: 'God spared me' from dying from drug addiction

Comedian Artie Lange isn't entirely sure how he survived his 30-year battle with drug addiction, but says he wears his deformed nose as a badge of honor for making it this far.

"Obviously my nose is still a mess, but it's funny — I like that as a reminder," Lange, 51, told TMZ. "Every time I look in the mirror, it reminds me of the insane life I led. A lot of bad decisions I made — I mean, 30 years of drug abuse, snorting heroin and cocaine, [and] I accidentally snorted glass once, which is a long story."

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(A brief version of Lange's "long story" about snorting glass: A former fling of Lange's used a glass salt shaker in a hotel room to crush OxyContin for him to snort, inadvertently shattering the glass shaker. Pieces of glass mixed in with the crushed OxyContin, which Lange didn’t notice until after he’d snorted the exceedingly dangerous mixture, leading him to weeks of chronic nosebleeds thereafter.)

"I got punched in the face once by a guy collecting money for a bookie. This nose should be a reminder to young people — I hope it is: If you can make money, have some success, you can still live like a straight-up scumbag."

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Artie Lange announced in early September 2019 that he's been sober for 7 months. The comedian has openly struggled with drug addiction for 30 years.

Artie Lange announced in early September 2019 that he's been sober for 7 months. The comedian has openly struggled with drug addiction for 30 years. (Twitter)

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Lange, who revealed last week that he's seven months sober, admitted that at the lowest points of his addiction, he was reminded of friends Mitch Hedberg and Greg Giraldo, who suffered untimely deaths due to their own battles with substance abuse.

"I said to myself, 'I'm gonna just be found dead in a hotel room. I'm not gonna make it,'" he recalled. "God spared me. For some reason I'm still here."

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He was quick to explain, however, that his character remains relatively unscathed despite his "scumbag" struggles.

"I've never been a bad person but I've done some bad things because I was addicted to drugs and still am," he said. "But I'm in recovery now, so I'm happy to see people responding well to me looking better."

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"I'm gonna get it fixed eventually," he said, noting that he's interested in speaking with "Botched" plastic surgeons. "It looks a little better, but I don't think it could look much worse."