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Inmates (We’re All Crazy) (From The Inside, 1978)

“Inmates (We’re All Crazy)” Lyrics:

Not like we did something wrong
We just burned down the church
While the choir within sang religious songs
And it’s not like we thought we was right
We just played with the wheels of a passenger train
That cracked on the tracks one night

It’s not like we ain’t on the ball
We just talk to our shrinks
Huh they talk to their shrinks
No wonder we’re up the wall
We’re not stupid or dumb
We’re the lunatic fringe who rusted the hinge
On Uncle Sam’s daughters and sons

Good old boys and girls
Congregating waiting in another world
With roller coaster brains
Imagine playing with trains

Good old boys and girls
Congregating waiting in some other world
We’re all crazy, we’re all crazy, we’re all crazy
Lizzy Borden took an axe and gave her mother forty whacks

And don’t think we’re trying to be bad (no!)
All the innocent crime seemed alright at the time (Not neccesarily mad)
Not necessarily mad not necessarily mad
We watch every day for the bus
And the driver would say
“That’s where lunatics stay”
I wonder if he’s talking about us

It’s not like we’re vicious or gone (no!)
We just dug up the graves where your relatives lay In old forest lawn
And it’s not like we don’t know the score
We’re the fragile elite they dragged off the street
I guess they just couldn’t take us no more

Good old boys and girls
Congregating waiting in another world
With roller coaster brains
Imagine digging up graves

Good old boys and girls
Congregating waiting in some other world
We’re all crazy, we’re all crazy, we’re all crazy,
We’re all crazy, we’re all crazy, we’re all crazy
We’re all crazy crazy crazy crazy, we’re all crazy
We’re all crazy, we’re all crazy, we’re all crazy
(crowd repeat)

From The Inside was released on November 17, 1978. The LP is a biographical concept based on Alice’s stay at Cornell Medical Center. It is an irreplaceable record. It may be his most intimate album – an honest display of vulnerability and insight.

The songs on the album take the listener on a roller coaster of emotions, including excitement, desperation, insecurity, instability, and so much more.

The cover art for the LP is Alice’s face that gatefolds open to a scene from the mental asylum. The visual layout could easily be a still frame from the 1975 movie One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. However, the most haunting part of the artwork is found under the paper door labeled “Quiet Room.”

“So I went in (to Cornell Medical Center), I was there because of alcohol, and everybody else was in there because they were criminally insane (laughs). So when I came out, I talked to Bernie Taupin, who was my best friend. I said to Bernie, “We’re both lyricists; let’s play a ping-pong match. You write a line, and I’ll write a line.” So, that’s what we did with that album.” – Alice Cooper

Alice and Taupin masterfully wordsmithed their way through an incredible list of songs recounting Cooper’s experience at Cornell. The sheer grit and emotion can be felt in the words alone. Couple the lyrics with the music, and one of Alice’s most noteworthy concept albums unfolds.

Inmates (We’re All Crazy)” is the final track on the LP and it impeccably sums up Alice’s stay. There’s a juxtaposition between Cornell’s inmates, society, and humanity as a whole. Who denotes who is crazy? How do we come to such conclusions?

Not like we did something wrong
We just burned down the church
While the choir within sang religious songs
And it’s not like we thought we was right
We just played with the wheels of a passenger train
That cracked on the tracks one night

It’s not like we ain’t on the ball
We just talk to our shrinks
Huh they talk to their shrinks
No wonder we’re up the wall
We’re not stupid or dumb
We’re the lunatic fringe who rusted the hinge
On Uncle Sam’s daughters and sons

Good old boys and girls
Congregating waiting in another world
With roller coaster brains
Imagine playing with trains

Life is crazy. Stop for a moment and reflect on that. What are the best moments? What are the worst? Which ones are the most confusing? Are we still confused? What effect do these moments have? Do they change us?

The mysteries of the human mind are everlasting. Who are we? How do we feel about things and scenarios? Why do we do what we do? Those questions (and so many more) do not have specific answers. In fact, they are very personal. Therefore, they lead us to an infinite amount of answers.

With such a vast, diverse array of thinking, many would say we are guided by chaos. There is no order. There is no rhyme or reason. Things just are what they are. However, we know differently. Disorder and chaos give way to our Heavenly Father, our Creator. He is the author of order and peace (1 Corinthians 14:33).

He divided darkness from Light (Genesis 1:4) and sea from the land (Genesis 1:9). He made plants and animals multiply according to their kinds (Genesis 1:11-12, 20-25). He created humankind distinctly male or female (Genesis 1:27) and asked humanity to care for the earth (Genesis 2:15).

We could further explore order and its relationship to God, but let’s focus primarily on humanity. Alice’s song brings us to a profound question. How can we all be so different if there’s only one Creator? To that question, perhaps the answer is simple. We chose sin, not Him.

Instead of going into some long diatribe about how awful humanity is, let’s focus on something different. Perhaps something unknown or unfamiliar.

Many look to astrology for answers in the stars. Others to psychiatric evaluations. Still others to clairvoyant interpreters. However, how many have heard of the Enneagram?

The Enneagram is a system based on nine personality types that have their own key motivations and fears that largely guide their actions and decisions. Our subconscious minds are wired in a way that fits in one of those Enneagram Personality Types.

Several pastors, coaches, and therapists have adopted the Enneagram to help explain behavior, relational misunderstandings, and why we struggle to connect with some more than others.

Dr. Tom Lahue, pastor, mentor, and friend of Fridays with Alice, has developed courses and written books about the Enneagram. He helps bring light to why the Enneagram is useful. However, he notes it is not an end-all-be-all remedy that leads to restoration.

“The Enneagram does not fix us…It merely shows us how we are broken.  It points us to our need for a Savior.” – Dr. Tom Lahue

Before examining the nine personality types, please know this does not replace God’s Word. We firmly believe that true transformation and enlightenment can ONLY come through Jesus Christ, our Lord (Galatians 2:20). Interestingly enough, the Enneagram helps better explain why that is.

In Lahue’s book Basics of Enneagram Coaching, he defines the nine types as follows:

Type One: The Perfectionist (Sin/Vice: Anger)
Ones are principled and strive for perfection in everything they do. They are often critical of themselves and others and have a strong sense of right and wrong.

Type Two: The Helper (Sin/Vice: Pride)
Twos are caring, empathetic, and nurturing. They are often selfless and focus on the needs of others, sometimes at the expense of their own needs.

Type Three: The Achiever (Sin/Vice: Deceit)
Threes are ambitious and success-oriented. They are often highly driven and competitive, seeking to achieve their goals and receive recognition for their accomplishments.

Type Four: The Individualist (Sin/Vice: Envy)
Fours are creative and sensitive, often feeling misunderstood or different from others. They have a strong sense of identity and often seek to express themselves through art or other creative pursuits.

Type Five: The Investigator (Sin/Vice: Greed)
Fives are analytical and curious, often pursuing knowledge and understanding. They can be detached and withdrawn, preferring to observe rather than participate in social situations.

Type Six: The Loyalist (Sin/Vice: Fear)
Sixes are loyal and committed, often seeking security and stability in their relationships and careers. They can be anxious and fearful, constantly seeking reassurance and support.

Type Seven: The Enthusiast (Sin/Vice: Gluttony)
Sevens are adventurous and optimistic, often seeking new experiences and opportunities. They can be impulsive and scattered, sometimes avoiding difficult emotions or situations.

Type Eight: The Challenger (Sin/Vice: Lust)
Eights are powerful and assertive, often seeking control and dominance in their relationships and careers. They can be confrontational and aggressive, sometimes using their strength to intimidate others.

Type Nine: The Peacemaker (Sin/Vice: Sloth)
Nines are peaceful and harmonious, often seeking to avoid conflict and maintain balance in their relationships and environments. They can be passive and indecisive, sometimes losing touch with their own needs and desires.

As we can see, there are various discrepancies between the types, and while only one sin is assigned to each, of course, each type doesn’t just struggle with that one. However, they are primarily affected by the vice associated with their type.

Also, this is only a basic overview and does not discuss the more detailed differences between the nine types, including wings, lines, subtypes, stances, etc.

We could go much deeper into this topic and why the Enneagram promotes understanding, love, and, most importantly, Grace. But that is not our goal for this post.

NOTE: If you’d like to know more about the Enneagram and its application to our faith, check out Dr. Lahue’s site, Instagram, YouTube, and books.

Instead of focusing solely on the Enneagram, we concentrate on our Creator. Look at the structure and design of human behavior and personality. Those nine types are found within everyone. The most perfectly balanced individual could operate and pull from any number when needed.

We aren’t broken or fractured by design. We are broken because of sin. Our sins (or vices) keep us disconnected, lonely, abandoned, and incomplete. Therefore, we need restoration. We need repair. We need approval, love, and completion. We are offered a fix through the acceptance of Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.

Wrapping up this week’s post, our Heavenly Father has left us clues and witness marks of His Divine hands. There is order in creation. Many tools and discoveries lead us back to Him. His magnificence is no secret. However, it’s seldom given proper exposure.

Interestingly enough, the Enneagram also assigns a virtue to each personality type. They are as follows: Serenity (Type 1), Humility (Type 2), Truthfulness (Type 3), Calmness (Type 4), Generosity (Type 5), Courage (Type 6), Sobriety (Type 7), Innocence (Type 8), and Engagement (Type 9).

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.Galatians 5:22-26

Take one more look at that list of “virtues.” Do those coincide with the fruit of the Spirit (Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control)? We believe they do.

There’s a great deal of debate over the origins, purpose, and validity of the Enneagram. We get it. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea (coffee, etc.), yet we would argue it points us back to Dr. Lahue’s point, “our need for a Savior.

Some may see the Enneagram as a self-help guide or some improvement strategy for living. We see it as a reminder of our brokenness. We notice the magnificence of our Lord, Jesus Christ, not through the sins that define us but by the fruit (or virtues), His Spirit willingly bestows upon those who live according to Him.

In conclusion, From The Inside is one of Alice’s greatest LPs. We love the sincerity of this record. It’s raw, unapologetic, and honest. Every track tells a different story, leading the listener to the culmination of Coop’s stay at Cornell.

As he’s mentioned many times before, Alice’s bout with alcoholism led him there. However, the other inmates noted on the LP were there for other reasons (some much more nefarious than others). With that in mind, let us stop and consider our own lives. How close were we, are we, or will we be to madness?

Maybe, just maybe, “we’re all (even if ever so slightly) crazy.” The question is, “Where is the line between sanity and insanity?”

There is a breaking point, a rock bottom, that many of us will inevitably hit. What does that look like? Who will be there to lift us? Is it our family? Our friends? A random stranger? Where do we find solace?

Alice found peace through transformation. He is a new creation. He was not cured by his time at Cornell Medical Center. Instead, he was saved by the death, resurrection, and Love of his Savior, Jesus Christ.

That’s it for this week; be well, and catch you next week!

Until then, keep Walkin’ in Faith and Rockin’ with Alice!

Have you accepted Christ as your Savior?

If you would like to accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, please pray the following prayer:

"God, I believe in you and your son Jesus Christ.  I believe that Jesus died on the cross and rose from the grave to save me. Today, I invite Jesus into my heart to stay.  I make you Lord over my life. Make me new. Wash me, Lord, and cleanse me. In Jesus Name, Amen"

If you have just prayed that prayer, we want to celebrate your new victory with you.  Please contact us at prayers@oceanfloorministries.com so we can welcome you into the kingdom.  We don't want you to have to walk alone and we have some resources we would like the opportunity to share with you.

NOTE: We’d also like to share the following resources used by “Fridays With Alice.” Without these books and sites, this would be a much more complicated endeavor. So be sure to check them out if interested.

Click the images to learn more about these resources:

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