Beautiful & Fun Things

By BoomSpress-BabyBoomersExpress
Stream Of Conscious Ramblings of a Life Long Learner

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter,
and those who matter don't mind." -- Dr. Seuss

My Photo

Hello, Paula Gaon here, Libra Sun, Cancer Rising, Aquarius Moon. Nice to meet you. I'm one of many aging BabyBoomers scratching my head and wondering where the time went and why I still feel so confused. That planned career never came to fruition, and earning a living is just a necessary chore. A few years ago, after that proverbial mid-life crisis-which I prefer to think of as an extended adolescence, and my mother's advice, decided to get back to artwork-ie clear out the accumulated cobwebs and neurosis and bring to light all that's been gestating the past 30+ years. So here it is. Look forward to sharing a few ideas and images with you! Come over & rap with us:

Monday, October 03, 2005

A Tribute to John Lennon, 9October1940-8December1980

Jonn Lennon,
9 October 1940-8 December 1980
3 October 2005


Hope this post finds all well and happy. Still a bit pressured, almost keeping up--all things pass…

In any case, as stated in my profile, I am an aging Baby Boomer, scratching my head wondering where all the time has gone and at this stage find all sorts of stream of conscious thoughts swimming through my head. Another birthday is on the horizon; how can that really be my age, why haven't I …this that and the other… Know the feeling?

All during the young years, I had the distinction of sharing a birthday with
John Lennon. In adolescence, this was a great source of pride. Even into young adulthood, the fact that I shared a birthday with one of our generation's greats gave some good vibes. Then, on 8 December 1980, as we were coming into real adulthood, getting to be grown-ups ourselves, some of us over 30 and therefore not trustworthy anymore, John was tragically murdered (John was 40 at the time, but that didn't matter, he was after all John Lennon!)

The moment I heard the news of John's death brought an instant internalization of the meaning of the word mortality. This is it, no more acerbic comments for the news. no hope of one last Beatles reunion/concert tour. I wasn't the only one. Instinctively, large numbers of "Our Generation" spontaneously congregated at parks, public places and the places we'd hung around 10 years before. I don't even remember driving to the "Hippies' Park", but somehow in a short time, I was among the crowd of wide-eyed, tearful Lennon fans--even ran into people that I hadn't seen much less thought about, since high school. Again, as if by magic, we ended up congregating at some friends' home who lived nearby, and discussing "The End of an Era". Several of us noted how we were now behaving like old folks after a funeral--what goes around comes around, talk about Instant Karma!

OK, so let's not get morbid here. I really want to talk about John's life. Again, the "Time Factor Thing" hit me the other day while talking to a young woman who was born in 1980. Boom, blind-sided again--a whole generation has been born, grown up and had kids of their own? "…Because the wind is high it blows my mind…" Whew! However, this young woman did know who John was and was familiar with his works. How many of us were into our parents' music?

Let's look at it and put it all into some sort of perspective. When the Fab Four hit the American shores, we were still in our naïve, post war world, high on our own issues and thankful for our high standard of living. "Long Haired Music" was what you had to listen to in music class at school--that's what came out of Europe. We've got Elvis and Motown--who needs it? Those people over there are still rebuilding after the War, in the shadow of the USSR, no less.

Guess again. "The Brits, they've got this new beat, The Beatles, and that hair, can you believe it?, and Paul, Ahhhhh, he's so cute, and that sweet voice! He and John write almost all their songs--and even songs for other Brits; but John's already married, he's really the leader, the tough one… Ringo's so cool with all those rings, and those baby blues, George is quiet, he plays lead guitar, he's sooooo talented bla, bla, bla…what else was there to talk about? The Beatles are touring the USA--gotta get tickets, who'd you see in line?, doesn't That Boy sort of look like John, Paul, George, Ringo? Oh, it seems like Yesterday…" It was indeed a phenomenon. The night The Fab Four appeared on Ed Sullivan, not a single crime was committed in New York City. Have we seen the likes since? Could any form of entertainment today excite our jaded psyches to such an extent?

But even back then time marched on. Those teenybopper melodies that The Fab Four sang on the American Tour with John usually in the limelight, (Yeah, Yeah, Yeah), some of which were even remakes ("Twist & Shout", "You Really Got a Hold On Me"--doesn't matter, The Beatles are singing it) soon started to take on a different character. Yes, the Brits had invaded again with Lennon and McCartney at the helm, John peering near-sightedly into the distant horizon and clear to India as we later discovered, but this time the Brits came to expand our world--for the next couple of generations. Within a few years of the Invasion, John had us listening to feedback and dogs barking ("I'm in Love With Her and I Feel Fine"); we called it music and reveled in the innovation. Need more innovation? What's this about a girl,
Lucy in The Sky With Diamonds, no less? Must be drug related--LSD, get it? Nope, guess again. John was inspired by his little son's drawing--where'd he come up with such imagery--tangerine skis, kaleidoscope eyes? Uh-oh, yeah, yeah, yeah is long gone, and now the music is taking on a strange Eastern twang. And what did John dare say about Jesus? No, no, you misunderstood; he said it about you and how important your religion is to you? Well, I never…

Twenty-five years later, after long ago passing John's age at the time of his death, I'm no less amazed by the phenomenon of a working class, orphaned, Liverpool boy's, rise to such accomplishment and fame. John was born with the ability to see into the deep layers of this thing we call life. Not only did he see, he spoke as well as took action, remember Amsterdam? John wasn't afraid to put his foot in his mouth, tweak our noses, and tell us we were a bunch of asses and include himself--"Nowhere man…isn't he a bit like you and me?" My fellow Libra could see the wrongs in the world and spit them out in such a succinct and jarring manner that we had to listen--
"A working class hero…They hate you if you're clever and the despise a fool." Yet, he was never afraid of that tender Libra side that craves relationships--admitted in song, "I'm just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round…"--doing the domestic thing, admit that he needs some sleep, rest to clear his head,--"No, don't wake me, please don't shake me…" not accomplishing anything right now the way you think I should, on to raging in California returning after a catharsis and admit to us "I don't believe in…I'm not the walrus, …I'm John" John played rhythm guitar and he accepted the rhythms of life and didn't know what it meant to be ashamed or let anyone force him to make excuses, after all, "Life is what happens while we're busy making plans.".

And before you get on your high horse, don't forget:
"Everybody's got one".

Imagine Still…
~Paula Gaon