You Can’t Push A Bullet Back Into A Gun- A True Story

August 5, 2006

Ten years ago, when I kept inexplicably falling down in the street, I went into USC medical center for tests. I expected to stay for three days, but they kept me for three weeks! While I was waiting to be scheduled for a spinal operation, I was in a ward next to a young man who was handcuffed to his bed. He looked over at me and said, “Yo’ Pops, can I have some of your water?”

I said, “First, don’t call me Pops, I may not as young as you, but I can still beat your ass!”. He smiled weakly, whille bandaged over much of his upper body, and asked politely, “Can I please have some of your water, sir?” Just as I was about to give it to him, a large male nurse took the glass out of my hand, glared at him and said, “You know you’re not allowed to have any water…because of your gunshot wounds!”

I asked him what happened? He said he was a gangbanger and he was in a shootout with a rival gang. I asked him if he thought this kind of life style was cool or romantic?

“I did…until I got shot!”

“How do you feel about it now?”

“It hurts…It really hurts! I didn’t expect getting shot would feel like this!”

I told him I was a songwriter and I shared a few lines with him that I had written a few days earlier.

You Can’t Push A Bullet Back Into A Gun

You can say that you’re sorry, but the damage is done

you may as well try to blow out the sun

You Can’t Push A Bullet Back Into A Gun

He asked me to repeat it, then asked me to write it down. As I gave it to him I said, “I hope you remember those words if you’re ever in a situation like that again.” He just nodded. At lights out, I could hear him quietly moaning, his medication wasn’t working well enough. I called for the night nurse and let him use my Walkman. I told him that whenever the pain became too much to bear just turn the music up.

The next morning, he was taken to a private room to recover. He told me that turning up the music on my Walkman really helped him dampen the pain. I told him that he was welcome to borrow it while he was recovering.

I honestly never expected to see him or or my walkman ever again, but a week later he dropped by my bed to see me before he was about to be discharged. Handcuffed to his wheelchair, being pushed by an L.A. police officer, he handed me my Walkman and recited by memory…

You Can’t Push A Bullet Back Into A Gun

You say that you’re sorry but the damage is done

You may as well try to blow out the sun

You Can’t Push a Bullet Back Into A Gun

He shook my hand and smiled. Although I never saw or heard from him again, I knew he would never forget his experience…and neither will I.
If you’d like to hear the finished song click onto

One Response to “You Can’t Push A Bullet Back Into A Gun- A True Story”

  1. steveo Says:

    Again, a fantastic story.thanks for sharing it with us..
    very cool!

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