I am essentially insane. Deeply, entertainingly, disturbingly insane. Most people are unaware of this because I cover the truth with a thin veneer of niceness. I do the nice guy thing to smooth my way through life, and because if I revealed my true self in every circumstance and in every way, people would avoid me like the plague. And my permanent place of residence would be The New Hampshire Home for Morons, Psychopaths and Mental Defectives.
The Allman Brothers have a song called Nobody Left To Run With Anymore. I would call it one of my favorites, but they are ALL one of my favorites. The song has always appealed to me because it taps into my opinion about the maturing process. Which is AVOID IT AT ALL COSTS. Responsibility and respectability are two words I despise. Except when I am looking for respect; then it's a good word, if I get it. Howard Stern once said that when he went to school functions for his kids he felt like all the other parents were adults and he was still a kid. That's how I have always felt.
But I digress.
"Nobody left to run with anymore; nobody left to do the crazy things we used to do before." Lyrics that talk about how everybody has grown up, become responsible and respectable, and given up on the insanity that once made them interesting. I have not given up on that aspect of my soul and it is revealed, in the right situation, with the help of whiskey and boldness.
That's what last Sunday was all about. And I have a friend named Ed who I can still run with, can still do crazy things with. We were insane behind the bar that day; we let it all out and neither one of us had a shred of self consciousness about it. Because it felt so good, so right, so natural; it was who we are.
Could you stand behind a bar with a room full of people facing you, and sing at the top of your lungs and dance like a madman and enjoy it to the max? Not too many people with the cojones to pull that off; me and Ed did it effortlessly. And don't get me wrong; I'm sure there were people there who said "look at those two morons." But I don't give a damn about people like that. And I'm willing to bet there were more people there who laughed right along with us and dug the show.
Ed is 72, I am 57. Still crazy after all these years. I have only known him for 5 and 1/2 years but we are kindred spirits. Certain parts of our personalities mesh and we are both whiskey fiends. I am grateful to have a friend like him that I can get crazy with, blow it all out, and feel comfortable doing it. He doesn't judge me, I don't judge him, we indulge our insanity separately and together (it's much more potent when it's together), and we know that it is the right thing to do.
We do the responsible thing, we take care of business, work for money and empty the trash, BUT we become raving lunatics when we feel the need because we cannot deny that aspect of our souls. In fact we celebrate that aspect of our souls because it is the raw release of our essence, it allows us to express something not everybody has, and because it is FUN. Fun is hard to come by as a responsible, respectable adult, which is why my friendship with Ed is entirely therapeutic to me. You could say it is cathartic. Feels so good, feels so right.
So yeah, nobody left to run with anymore. Very true. None of my friends are willing to get entirely crazy anymore. Worried about payback, worried about appearances, beaten down by the crushing weight of that terrible affliction called adulthood.
But I have Ed and his insane soul and I have me and my insane soul. And when the stars are aligned, as they were last Sunday, it is better than the best fireworks display. Two human beings soul to soul exposing their very essence for the world to see and not giving a damn about opinions or repercussions. That is called living.
The Ed and Joe show will go on as long as we say it does. And I will look forward to it every year, knowing that at least once during that year I will get to be exactly who I am. With a good friend who is real, deep down; ragged and real.
Nobody Left To Run With Anymore. Except Ed. And that is more than good enough for me.