"I'd like to think that the old Beatle fans have grown up and they've got married and they've all got kids and they're all more responsible. But they still have a space in their hearts for us." George Harrison.
The back story….anthropologists at The University of Madup have been shocked to discover that Home Berriens which was thought to be a rare sub-species of Homo Sapiens has in fact developed at such a rate it has become a significant part of the adult population.Predominantly male, aged 23 to 52, it is characterised by a lowered forehead constantly foraging across a small screen. Significantly reduced peripheral vision and auditory acuity is coupled with the ability to work in very low lighting conditions such as the cinema. Accentuated fingers enable small keyboards to be adroitly managed at speed while simultaneously executing other activities such as eating cereal, walking the dog or sky-diving. This sub-species can easily be identified as one hand is permanently in a grip-like pose (similar to that of the early Action Man toys) from holding a Blackberry or similar device plus one jacket pocket hangs much lower then the other. This is coupled with a general unease as they realise there is no such panacea as ‘in-box zero’. Approach with care as normal conversation (as bench-marked with Homo Sapiens) can be alarmingly different.
At The Supermarket
Jack is phoning home. It's 0923 Saturday morning. He's next to organic crunchy peanut butter with added vitamins.
Jack: Hi honey. Er..what cereals did you want me to get? I know the kids keep having new fads.
Sally-Anne: Jack-it's all on the list. You did take it didn't you?
Jack: Really sorry honey. I got a bit distracted clearing a back-log of some mail. Look-any chance you could e-mail it to me. I'll just wait in Starbucks next door until it comes through; there's a spreadsheet I can complete. Love you sweetheart.
Later this week. Homo Berriens makes love. But not as we know it.
Top blogger Cultural Offering offers us a rich mix of music, history, political commentary and most recently the joys of English place-names. One of my favourite English counties is Dorset, home of The Tolpuddle Martyrs. Dorset is rich with wonderful names; it doesn't take many miles of driving before the endless variants on puddles are morphing into piddles such as the glorious Piddlehinton. I suspect many of the locals are now so glad they can order on-line.
Because they help us through The Seven Stages of Love:
Stage 1: desire from afar: I want to Hold your Hand;
Stage 2: phew, confirmation it's mutual: She Wants to Hold your Hand;
Stage 3: bliss; 'going out': Here, There and Everywhere;
Stage 4: sex, lots of it: Drive My Car;
Stage 5: oh,oh: challenges : We Can Work it Out;
Stage 6: mutual respect and deeper love: Let it Be;
Stage 7: eternal love: Two of Us
Bonus: The Beatles did actually produce an album of love songs, sadly never released on CD (not to be confused with the recent compilation 'Love' album) and clearly not available on iTunes. But you could create one for your loved one for Valentine's Day. But don't forget the single rose tied to their bicycle; that's the bit most people don't do.
...and I was sitting on the last but one back row (a strategy I had identified which kept me low profile, but not 'obviously' so). I was just slipping into a personal trance as I awaited the usual cocktail of Dickens, Austen, Milton and Shakespeare when Jack - our affectionately nick-named master came in with more of a bounce than usual. He opened a paper-back and read:
"Caldwell turned and as he turned his ankle received an arrow. The class burst into laughter. The pain scaled the slender core of his shin, whirled in the complexities of his knee, and swollen broader, more thunderous, mounted into his bowels. His eyes were forced up to the blackboard where he had chalked the number 5,000,000,000...."
My English teacher had discovered John Updike. That lunch-time I slipped out of school and bought my own copy of The Centaur. I'd finished it by the end of the day.
Sadly neither Jack nor Updike are still with us but I still have that battered copy with school-boy scrawl. Big, big thanks to both of them: true encouragers.
...chop wood, carry water, make sandwiches, sharpen pencils, do the washing-up by hand....Do something physical. In the end we can only mange what we can; and that is well worth managing well. But to keep our worst-case-scenario planner (our brain) under control in tricky and uncertain times, keep it grounded with some serious physical activity. You'll notice the huge beneficial difference.
Pick any Beatles song. Go on. Any. No-not a Sinatra cover. Nor Band on the Run nor something from the Plastic Ono Band. From the original Fab Four from Liverpool. Now put down your coffee and listen to it. Really listen to it. Amazing isn't it? As fresh as the day it was written and recorded. No other songwriters have ever done it. Every Beatles song is guaranteed 100% fresh. Vinyl or CD. Try it now: Penny Lane. You don't really know it; you thought you did. Rain? Even Hey Jude. Here, There and Everywhere. Discover all and any anew.
So, how did Lennon and McCartney do it? Some clever musical composition? Deep trance lyrics? Accessed our de-aging gene? No simply this. Not a single Lennon-McCartney track was written mechanically, by the book or to a formula. All were from the collective Beatles soul. And hence quite simply: timeless.