Sign of the Apocalypse: Singer Willie Nelson Has Quit Smoking Weed

Willie Nelson is turning his back on the one thing, besides his music, that he’s been passionate about for decades: smoking pot.

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Nelson swears “weed saved my life.” But the country music star announced he has quit smoking pot because, it turns out, smoking is bad for you.

The 86-year-old singer told KSAT-TV that he’s putting down the bong:

“I have abused my lungs quite a bit in the past, so breathing is a little more difficult these days and I have to be careful. I started smoking cedar bark, went from that to cigarettes to whatever. And that almost killed me. I don’t smoke anymore - take better care of myself.”

Nelson canceled a tour in August because of “breathing problems,” and it’s those problems that prompted him to quit smoking weed. The cancellation also gave rise to speculation about whether he had a life-threatening condition, but Nelson says he ignores that talk, “I don’t give a (expletive deleted). I’m here, I’m glad to be here. I’m lucky to be here.”

Nelson has been such a slavish fan of smoking weed that he once admitted to toking up on the roof of the White House. He’s been busted several times for it over the years and been a voice in efforts to legalize marijuana.

It’s unclear what impact his startling announcement will have on his marijuana business, called “Willie’s Reserve,” which declares, "Nelson has never made any bones about it. The cannabis culture is a way of life for him. And he has always operated under a simple philosophy: my stash is your stash."

Willie probably won’t be giving up pot entirely. He also sells edibles and oils on his website.