"Same In The End" as written by Bradley James Nowell, Eric John Wilson and Floyd I. Gaugh Iv....
Down in Mississippi where the sun beats down from the sky
They give it up and they give it up and they give it up
But they never ask why
Daddy was a rollin', rollin' stone
He rolled away one day and he never came home

It ain't hard to understand
This ain't Hitler's master plan
What it takes to be a man
In my mind, in my brain
I roll it over like a steamin' freight train
It ain't hard to ascertain

You only see what you want to believe
When you light up in the back with those tricks up your sleeve
That don't mean I can't hang
The day that I die
Will be the day that I shut my mouth and put down my guitar
Sunday morning hold church down at the bar
Get down on your knees and start to pray
Pray my itchy rash will go away

Back up y'all it ain't me
Kentucky Fried Chicken is all I see
It's a hellified way to start your day
If I make you cry all night
Me and daddy gonna have a fist fight
It ain't personal, it ain't me

I only hear what you told me to be
I'm a backward-ass hillbilly
I'm Dick Butkiss
You know I lie
I get mean, I'm a thief in the dark
I'm a ragin' machine
I'm a triple rectified ass son of a bitch
Rec-tite on my ass and it makes me itch
I can see for miles and miles and miles
My broken heart makes me smile

In my mind, in my brain
I go back and go completely insane
It ain't personal, it ain't me
If I make you cry I might
Be your daddy at the end of the night
Take a load from my big gun

You only see what you want to believe
When you creep from the back
I got tricks up my sleeve
Twenty four seven, devil's best friend
It makes no difference
It's all the same in the end


Lyrics submitted by The Big Andowski

"Same in the End" as written by Eric John Wilson Bradley James Nowell

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Same In The End song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentI think there's likely a lot of different meanings to these lyrics and I've read here a variety of interesting opinions, some of which never occurred to me before.

    Perhaps it takes one to know one however because for someone acquainted with opiate addiction, as Bradley was, there are quite a few obvious references to heroin use and abuse. It's my opinion that the underlying theme of the song is that of conveying some of the sad realities of opiate -- specifically heroin -- abuse.

    As a fellow opiate addict, this is what I'm sure of:

    "Tricks up one's sleeve" refers to the track marks left on one's arms by persistent IV drug use. Each injection site represents an injury to the body and repeated punctures lead to, at best, scarring. At worst, whether the injections be intravenous or intramuscular ("skin popping"), abscesses can develop and result in even more disfigurement.

    "Itchy rash" and the references to "Rectite" are well-known to those who suffer from opiate abuse and withdrawal. Abusing opiates like heroin can cause elevated levels of chemicals called histamines in one's bloodstream. This causes your skin to itch and the resulting repeated scratching can lead to a rash. Also, a common symptom associated with opiate withdrawal is diarrhea. "Rectite" refers to a fictional product designed to seal up one's anus, thus curing persistent diarrhea. As far as I know, there's no such product. It's more of an urban legend, though Google seems to indicate that "Rectite" is also a French medical term related to the diarrhea caused by radiation treatment.

    "Kentucky Fried Chicken" is another reference to track marks that can be caused by IV drug use, specifically the terrible damage caused by untreated abscesses. The resulting pockmarks and ridged scar tissue is said to be reminiscent of a piece of KFC fried chicken. Seeing that as you "hit your wake-up" (your first dose of the day) is truly a "hellified" way to start your day.

    There are also other lyrics in this song which clearly can be interpreted in different ways. Here's what I speculate:


    I don't know much about Bradley's upbringing or family life, but the first verse seems to indicate that his father wasn't much of a role model to say the least. Perhaps he leaves some of the blame for his later struggles with narcotics at the feet of a father absent for much of his life.

    The references to mornings and the beginning of a day loom large for opiate addicts. It's the worst time of the day for someone in active addiction because one typically wakes up "sick," meaning the initial effects of opiate withdrawal can be felt. As I said before, it really is a "hellified way to start your day" and getting on your knees and praying for some sort of release from that Hell is not uncommon.

    The phrase "it ain't me" is one that I can identify with as a recovering addict. We will do whatever is necessary to "get well" (once addicted, using opiates becomes less about getting high and more about staving off the effects of withdrawal) and that includes lying, cheating, stealing, etc. These behaviors shock those that know us best because our actions and the single-mindedness with which we pursue getting high are completely at odds with what our loved ones expect out of us. Truly though, our bad behavior isn't personal. It's simply a reflection of the hold dope can have over one's life.

    Though it's obviously easy to construe the meaning of "take a load from my big gun" to be overtly sexual, I think that to an IV drug user, it clearly refers to the "shot" delivered by a hypodermic syringe.

    Lastly, I think Bradley engages in a little irony towards the end of the song when he describes being able to "see for miles and miles," which is not an uncommon way to describe being high, while at the same time being broken-hearted. This resonates deeply with me because it's a perfect description of the allure of opiate use followed by the painful reality that the euphoria they cause comes with an incredibly painful price.

    Regardless of what Bradley intended the song to mean in relation to his own life, "Same in the End" fucking rocks! :o)
    BobTheCornCobon August 27, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is my favorite sublime song. Unfortunately, I have no idea what he's talking about because he was a musical genius on mad drugs. Towards the end it seems like he's talking about someone broke his heart but he feels like he shouldn't give a shit and gets all crazy in the process of trying to make himself immune to any emotional pain because he figures everything evens out in the end anyway. just a guess.
    goodbyeskyharboron May 13, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think it's about people who try to be something their not... but in the end it dosen't matter because god knows who you really are.
    Ali0sonon May 24, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think it's just some laid back bad ass sublime that you don't need to figure out
    ninpunk420on May 29, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti don't think this song is laid back at all
    BeautifulDisasteron July 02, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis songs about how Brad's sometimes arrogant and how he has problems with that. I love the line "the day that i die will be day that i shut my mouth and put down my guitar" I feel the same way. I just hope that the day that i die wont be the day that i overdose.
    MetalKronicon July 04, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is about bad things happening in his life but hes saying its all the same in the end so he doesnt care, hell do what he want.
    SENORgraciosoon September 04, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMetalKronic you're fucked up man. Stop smoking crack while you analyze lyrics.
    wastedanimosityon March 18, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI like the loud part, it's awesome
    AeroLed286on April 23, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis is also my favorite sublime song, i agree with ninpunk420 "i think it's just some laid back bad ass sublime that you don't need to figure out"

    i like the music, and the energy, its one that keeps u going, and its sooo fun to sing. RIP Brad
    blueblackeyes101on April 29, 2003   Link

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