I had a friend his name was Bruce same last name as in the song. Bruce never got a new name, if you are Mormon that will be significant. Bruce and I were raised LDS, or Mormon. Bruce wasn’t having any of this church shit. He was totally free of shame and guilt. He was probably smoking weed at 14 and by the time I was 16 he had dropped acid and eaten mushrooms. This guy would not be controlled. He was a law unto himself, a real Jim Morrison type. He hated authority, hated the church, loved his folks and family but chaffed under their bridal. In fact I would say he was one of the biggest hearted people I ever knew where love was concerned. In church there is room for all but no room for people like Bruce. Here in my heart there’s an empty space.
Bruce was our leader. He was a big barrel chested dude who surfed and skied, skateboarded, fought. Bruce had superior esthetics in music, art and literature. A highly intelligent person. Even though he was colorblind he was an artist. Bruce turned me on! He loved music and gave me Neil Young, the Grateful Dead and Roxy Music. I gave him Genesis “The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway” and King Crimson But he was by far the greater influence. At 17 he was very worldly and knowledgeable, he had had sex… more than once! Bruce introduced me to shamanism and higher consciousness before I knew what that was. We shared a visionary world. He told me to read “The Teachings of Don Juan” by Carlos Castaneda, books I highly recommend. We had some experiences together of other realms and living dreams, amazing stuff. Once we had a really scary experience of an apparition at Torrance Beach both of us together saw this black mass coming towards us…. not gonna get into detail but we ran like hell. Know idea what that was. But it was grand to experience that with Bruce.
We drifted apart after during college mostly because of the religion, such a regret to me. We went down divergent paths. I returned to the programming of the cult my parents raised me in and he drifted. Bruce was not fashioned to be in a culture of manipulation and mind control. He was truly a free and transcendent spirit. He was our leader and I’m so glad I was in on the mischief. Bruce, what a leader in sin this guy was. We would follow that dude and do any crazy shit he said. It was never destructive of physically dangerous just crazy inappropriate fun and of course there were the psychedelics. I loved this guy. His parents were very glum and serious but nice. The Church up bringing and his families expectations coupled with his inability to fit any mold crushed and killed this amazing guy. Eventually I believe he became estranged from his parents. They were ashamed of their wild boy. Bruce ended up on heroin, getting busted, joining the Navy and getting discharged for insubordination. He probably told an officer to fuck off or threw a punch at the authority. From what I understand Bruce died of liver disease or cancer a very painful protracted illness. I love you Bruce where ever you are! Our leader in mayhem and consciousness exploration. I just shed tears for your loss and it’s been so very long!
Did you have a friend like Bruce?