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Old Dec 14, 2011, 08:00 PM   #881
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Default Psst...

By the way, I know you all didn't ask but this is the thread where all this is being debated. It's on the end of the thread, starting on page 370.
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Old Dec 14, 2011, 09:36 PM   #882
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Default Let's jump off this one and onto something different...

Listening to John's late 70's demos, and his songs on Double Fantasy and Milk & Honey give me the impression that he had grown into a wise old sage in so many ways. His insights were clear, precise, and true about this world and about the fragility and strength of the human spirit. Not only that, but he had come around to looking at himself and examining himself as a whole instead of the parts. He seemed to have a sense of pride, in many ways, with his growth (as noted by his ending dialogue on "Borrowed Time"). I wonder, if anyone has listened to George's Brainwashed, which were songs by a man in his mid-50's accepting his current condition with the understanding that acceptance and courage...I see a LOT of similarities in very strange ways. It seems both these men seemed to have a very deep and philosophical/spiritual look at their life and the world around them.

In George case, he knew what was going to happen.

But John's death was an unexpected and horrific tragedy that should NOT have happened.

And yet, when I play those songs to others, for example my husband, there is always a little wide-eye look like, "Wow, he sounds like he knew."

I don't want to sound morbid, but do you think John may have had some premonition or feeling that he wasn't going to be around any more? If this question offends you ignore.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 04:06 PM   #883
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And yet, when I play those songs to others, for example my husband, there is always a little wide-eye look like, "Wow, he sounds like he knew."
I have thought the exact same thing for a long time. Listen to Woman... it really sounds like a man saying goodbye to his woman and trying to comfort her with "I love you, now and forever." I also think Watching the Wheels has a sense of premonition about it... that is why that song always makes me so melancholy.

Of course, it could just be the emotion that we attach to those particular songs that makes us feel that way, but there is something eery about a lot of his 1980 work...
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 04:09 PM   #884
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I have thought the exact same thing for a long time. Listen to Woman... it really sounds like a man saying goodbye to his woman and trying to comfort her with "I love you, now and forever." I also think Watching the Wheels has a sense of premonition about it... that is why that song always makes me so melancholy.

Of course, it could just be the emotion that we attach to those particular songs that makes us feel that way, but there is something eery about a lot of his 1980 work...
Yeah, and "I Don't Wanna Face It" and "Nobody Told Me."

But the one that always breaks my heart? "Grow Old With Me."
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 05:39 PM   #885
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Default (deep breath) Oh, boy.

I wonder...he often discussed Life and Death; his life had been so marked by people he cared about suddenly dying; I'm sure it was on his mind from time to time, and unlilke most people, he would share his thoughts on the subject publicly, so the fact it came up in interviews towards the end doesn't necessarily mean he sensed it....

...and yet. That whole business towards the end where he told an interviewer his ONE WISH was to die before Yoko because he didn't want to live without her? What an odd wish to have! He went on to qualify that by saying no, he would not commit suicide if Yoko died, but his life would be so empty without her he hoped he would die first. She was at least 7 years, and actually closer to 8 years, older than he was. So, he was willing to shorten his potential life span by at least that much, just so he did not have to go through the pain of losing yet another person dear to him.

Now I am not saying that he sort of willed his own demise, but we are talking here about a man whose philosophy included the magical power of wishing and imagining to make a certain version of the Future manifest....and this man says in one of his last interviews that his ONE WISH was to die before Yoko.

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Old Dec 15, 2011, 05:57 PM   #886
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Now I am not saying that he sort of willed his own demise, but we are talking here about a man whose philosophy included the magical power of wishing and imagining to make a certain version of the Future manifest....and this man says in one of his last interviews that his ONE WISH was to die before Yoko.
No, I understand what you're saying. Wow... It sort of...hurts to know that he was so adamantly glued to that wish. I understand it though. John and Yoko were like a modern day Heathcliff/Catherine. Very intense. Wrought with passion and tumult, but undeniably in love. I can sense that they looked very deeply into one another's souls. To me, John was the more passionate and intense of the two. He was the one who could turn the charm on and off, who's temper was legendary, but who was the more affectionate and romantic of the two. Yoko was the realist. She had a quirky vision of the world and a very unique way of expressing her ideas, but she was ultimately more practical. She looked at the bigger picture and the future. She wanted to protect, care for, and please her partner. John looked at life as day-by-day. Some days were good, some days were not-so, some days were awful. He was far more sensitive and- although he definitely was down-to-earth and practical in the way he processed his inspiration and shared it, he was far more idealistic and dream-like in the way he viewed his love.

I can see John thinking this way very much. I want to think that it was just one of those truly beautiful gestures he made to show the world how much he loved her. But it probably was just as you say.

I have an interview from Yoko- and I can't find it to quote it here- where someone asks her about John's huge declarations of love and she said something like, he exaggerated those to make a point. The world was always attacking me and so he wanted everyone to know how much he loved me. Something like that. I know someone here has read it!
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 07:08 PM   #887
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Listening to John's late 70's demos, and his songs on Double Fantasy and Milk & Honey give me the impression that he had grown into a wise old sage in so many ways. His insights were clear, precise, and true about this world and about the fragility and strength of the human spirit. Not only that, but he had come around to looking at himself and examining himself as a whole instead of the parts. He seemed to have a sense of pride, in many ways, with his growth (as noted by his ending dialogue on "Borrowed Time"). I wonder, if anyone has listened to George's Brainwashed, which were songs by a man in his mid-50's accepting his current condition with the understanding that acceptance and courage...I see a LOT of similarities in very strange ways. It seems both these men seemed to have a very deep and philosophical/spiritual look at their life and the world around them.

In George case, he knew what was going to happen.

But John's death was an unexpected and horrific tragedy that should NOT have happened.

And yet, when I play those songs to others, for example my husband, there is always a little wide-eye look like, "Wow, he sounds like he knew."

I don't want to sound morbid, but do you think John may have had some premonition or feeling that he wasn't going to be around any more? If this question offends you ignore.
I find some assertions about John to be insensitive and ignorant at best and others to be quite enlightened. Or at least, plausibly intelligent.So here are MY thoughts on Dr. Winston O'Boogie.
He did, indeed suffer emotional trauma from his familial disconnect and subsequent FEELINGS of abandonment which never completely left him. Leastways, not until the last five years of his life.
He WAS emotionally troubled. But I highly doubt that he suffered from any extreme mental illnesses.I say this as a HUGE fan/follower of almost 50 years & a healthcare professional of 35 years.
It's human nature to want to box things, wrap neatly, attach a bow & say "there you have it.
PEOPLE aren't that simple. There are shades of grey,shades of cultural rights & wrongs, ethical versus moral etc..Nature vs nuture also cannot be overlooked when examining a personality.
My "dissection" of the subject:
He was by NATURE, inquisitive, rebellious, intelligent & a free thinker with an above average IQ.
Had he been reared in a typically British middle-class family with Mum and Dad, his feelings of abandonement & inadaquacy would likey NOT have been present and the world of music might never have known John Lennon the musician.
With his natural inclination for rebellion ( rebels are that way usually by NATURE & found in every social stratus & culture) & with his natural wit and intelligence, he may have been a shop keeper or banker or some other "respectable" career.
But his inner fears and emotional turmoil manifested themselves in a need to be loved, respected & if nothing else worked, to be feared.
He was a bit of a bully when younger in an effort to assert himself & mask his insecurities & fears.He WAS by nature, a natural "leader" & would brook no one mucking about or slighting him.
Those who knew him best have stated that they recognized in him, very early, an innate goodness under the surface. They knew that John could be depended upon to come to the aid of a friend faster than most. He demonstrated that time and again.
The rebel in him, as well as the allure of attention (especially from the opposite sex) was such that rock and roll was like a siren's call. One he could NOT refuse. It was a way to garner attention & respect in a world where heretofore, he hadn't felt except through physical or verbal intimidation.
The weapon he used most effectively was his sarcastic, quick wit.It never failed him. His tongue was rapier-sharp & many are the people who felt its thrust.It was his defense mechanism.
On top of his already frail psyche was his near-sightedness. Who ever heard of a rough & tough "four eyes"? Not in Liverpool in HIS day & age! He seldom wore his glasses & would rather walk into things (he often did!) than tarnish his tough guy image. Adolesence is a scary landmind for ANY child to navigate, in the BEST of times.One finds a way to fit in OR stand out from the crowd. John managed to do both.Not an easy or enviable task.(Oddly enough this myopia caused a squint which made him look even more menacing)
There was the absent father, Freddie & the talented & beautiful but distant mother, Julia.The former was ineffective as a husband & father for many reasons but mostly due to his occupation. The latter..Well, one need look no further than the teachings of Freud to see that John worshipped her from afar when she was absent & felt utterly betrayed & abandoned upon learning that she'd been living so near for so long & again, by losing her to death just as they were forging a close bond. When Jim Morrison sang "Father..I want to KILL you..Mother...I want to F*** you" in the Doors song, "The End"..as much as it pains us & makes us squirm..mother's are most OFTEN the focus of a young man's first sexual awakenings. Since the dawn of time.
When John found a willing, sexually compliant partner in Cynthia Powell, he no doubt felt he had hit the "jackpot"...Here was a girl who showered him with attention, dyed her tresses blond at his request because his "fantasy woman" was Briggette Bardot & met him wherever & whenever for sexual tyrsts.
I have absolutely NO DOUBT that had the relationship been allowed to run its course without Cynthia getting pregnant, they would NOT have married.But when she told him..he did what young men in his day were EXPECTED to do & married her. The timing could not have been worse. The Beatles were FINALLY starting to take off. Fame, fortune AND most important for John, attention & adoration, were about to be his on a scale he could only have dreamed.
It takes TWO to conceive. Since this was a mutually consensual relationship, blame should not factor. Had John NOT married her, HE would have been considered a callous cad. I believe that speaks volumes about his true nature, in that he didn't want Cyn to shoulder all the responsibility or shame.
Fast-foward to life on the road & SUPER stardom for The Beatles. Heady, indeed. Considering that all youthful eyes of the world were upon them & unwillingly or not, they were worshipped by millions..I feel they handled it as best they could, whilst searching for deeper meaning to life & themselves.
In the midst of all this..enter Yoko Ono. A woman 8 years John's Sr. A woman who looked, talked & acted for all the world to John, as if she were from another planet!She was interested in HIM! She was avant garde artistically & intellectually.John found her challenging & interesting. He had met his match. She did & said outrageous things and didn't give two figs what people thought. She was more invested in what they thought of her art. Here was a "mother figure"...one he could actually have but never fully "possess" I too have questioned the MANNER in which John&Yoko revealed their affair/intentions to Cyn.It was mean & heartless. Was it perhaps John's way of "paying her back" by "trapping" him into fatherhood & a loveless marriage? Possibly.Though not "fair"..psychologically it makes sense.In fact, it's the ONLY reasonable explanation. Unless he just didn't know Cyn was due home. But in all HER accounts, she claims he DID know & he never refuted that.
Life with the Lions.Part 1. Just as John's real marriage was breaking up, so was his "marriage" to the guys (which had actully been MORE important to him than the one with Cyn at least,as far as the impact on his musical career & the world stage.
In Yoko, he felt that he had finally met the woman who could be his "everything"..his partner, lover, soulmate,mother, etc.& it was at HIS insistance, (contrary to popular belief) that she follow him everywhere.
I believe Yoko sensed John's personal vulnerabilities & insecurities early. Though I DO believe she loved him,I also feel that his constant need for her to be at his side lead to:
Life with the Lions..Part 2. After the acrimonious split from his business partners, John turned increasingly to ONLY Yoko to meet ALL his needs.She was trying to get Kyoko back from Tony Cox,the FBI WAS wire tapping John & her due to their increased visibility in counter-culture, revolutionary causes,etc. There were miscarriages, drug addictions (both) etc..& after seeing his sexual infidelity..I think it all became too much & she sent him away ( the infamous 18 month "Lost Weekend")
For the sake of brevity, I'm merely touching on what I consider to be the most pivotal events..trying hard NOT to write a complete bio, it's been done and DONE! (Continued in the next post)
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 07:11 PM   #888
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Smile OK..So maybe 5 pence worth!

(Continued)
Even though Yoko sent him away, she chose May Pang as his "concubine" which tells me Yoko still wanted "control" & was not ready to end the marriage. She wanted "breathing room".
John gets messed up in LA for awhile but hooks up with brilliant collaborators, makes Walls and Bridges,& with Elton John on his ONLY number one hit as a solo artist (Whatever Gets You Through The Night"), does a concert WITH him at MSG & is reunited with Yoko. They conceive Sean & he's born on John's birthday in '75.
John's FINALLY at peace. He has Yoko, a new son & thus a new chance to "do it right!". For the first time in his ADULT life, he is not contractually obligated to record. He's on a healthy diet, living at The Dakota,able to spend his days with Sean while Yoko takes care of financial business etc.. All is right with the world.
Five years pass with John being a "house husband" & baking bread, etc..things he would NEVER, back in his Teddy-boy days.
He begins to feel the "call" of new music & tells Yoko "It's time, the Walrus said"..Time to record again.
Back to the psychological aspects..this was obv. the happiest, most contented time of his life. He no longer felt the need to be sarcastic, defensive or biting.His NEEDS as a person were being met.In order to believe & understand this....one need only to listen to his first album in five years.."Double Fantasy"
John often wrote lyrics he might not have expressed in conversation or an interview.
By the time he recorded "Double Fantasy" there can be no doubt that his "walls" had come DOWN. LOVE & acceptance were all he wanted. He finally had it. Along with a healthy dose of respect & understanding for women & children. Most important,he'd finally accepted himself.
Was he "perfect"? Heaven's no! He was a flawed human, as are we all to some extent. But I don't believe he was a phony or a "poser" EVER.
At the time he was involved in whatever had his attention, I believe he threw himself into causes & projects with total abandon. He was a complex character but never a phony.
When he felt a cause he had once supported was wrong or flawed, he stated so.There was no need to apologize for being human.
As a singer/songwriter, he will forever remain among the pantheon of the GREATS. No psychoanalysis in the universe will change that. That's eternally immutable.

THE END
So...sorry for the "thesis" Nico.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 07:58 PM   #889
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Was he "perfect"? Heaven's no! He was a flawed human, as are we all to some extent. But I don't believe he was a phony or a "poser" EVER.
At the time he was involved in whatever had his attention, I believe he threw himself into causes & projects with total abandon. He was a complex character but never a phony.
When he felt a cause he had once supported was wrong or flawed, he stated so.There was no need to apologize for being human.
As a singer/songwriter, he will forever remain among the pantheon of the GREATS. No psychoanalysis in the universe will change that. That's eternally immutable.
Wow. Thanks JustAJealousGuy for that very detailed summary of John. Although I personally can not rule out the possibility of John having any emotional or mental illness, I have to say that I agree with almost everything else you wrote- especially about his most distinguishable traits, one of them being his forthright honesty. Whenever we say, "he was human" I always want to say- "and so are we." And so was/is Paul, was George, was/is Ringo. But sometimes it doesn't seem that way.

I do like that you brought out how those who knew him always acknowledged his good qualities because they stood out to them. And of course, there were those who saw the other side of John, and he certainly could be a hothead. And then some. But from all that I have read, of those who knew him well, he stood tall as a loyal, warm, generous, temperamental, wonderful, jealous, sharp, cutting, and kind friend.

Anyway, I am SO GLAD you joined and decided to share your thoughts! Of course I know you are a very expressive/passionate writer and you will be amazed by the kinds of conversations that are sparked up here and, man, are there some intelligent and fierce JL fans with many great opinions and musings of their own.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 09:05 PM   #890
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Default My longwindedness messed me up..lol!

Yes, I think it VERY possible that John had a sub-consious premonition of his death. There have been other people that have as well.
Yet his last printed interview in Dec 1980 sounded upbeat & optimistic. It's rather hard to say for sure if he had a premonition.
Only he knew for sure I'd imagine.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 09:14 PM   #891
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Wow. Thanks JustAJealousGuy for that very detailed summary of John. Although I personally can not rule out the possibility of John having any emotional or mental illness, I have to say that I agree with almost everything else you wrote- especially about his most distinguishable traits, one of them being his forthright honesty. Whenever we say, "he was human" I always want to say- "and so are we." And so was/is Paul, was George, was/is Ringo. But sometimes it doesn't seem that way.

I do like that you brought out how those who knew him always acknowledged his good qualities because they stood out to them. And of course, there were those who saw the other side of John, and he certainly could be a hothead. And then some. But from all that I have read, of those who knew him well, he stood tall as a loyal, warm, generous, temperamental, wonderful, jealous, sharp, cutting, and kind friend.

Anyway, I am SO GLAD you joined and decided to share your thoughts! Of course I know you are a very expressive/passionate writer and you will be amazed by the kinds of conversations that are sparked up here and, man, are there some intelligent and fierce JL fans with many great opinions and musings of their own.
Thanks Nico! I'm happy to be here! As far as "mental illness" I'd stake my medical license and knowledge on the premise that he didn't have any. Emotional baggage is another story. He was emotionally scarred for sure.
And yes..as far as I'm concerned, he was hardest on himself when he stopped to analyze his own works (as you know) I also know that, though he could fly off the handle (especially in his earlier days) he could be a very loyal friend. A flawed, complex, brilliantly talented human...gone far too soon. Thanks! **doffs hat** ;D
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 09:36 PM   #892
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This is an insanely astute observation I never thought of. This is why I love this thread so much. John's humor could definitely hint at the macabre and he had almost a strange fascination at one time with making those "spaz" faces that all the other Beatles (especially George) would find hysterical and never understand the true genesis of. But his parents were characters themselves. They had personality, spunk, youthfulness, and humor. And they passed it on to their son. But they also gave him a lot to be sad about, and I almost think his obsession with those faces and narrowing in on deformities and such was some kind of inner pain. Or perhaps he was thinking about his little dad and giving it back to him in his own way.
As soon as I read this...I thought of "Crippled Inside"... I think on a deeper level that went verbally unexpressed for many years..John realized that "One thing you can't hide, is when you're crippled inside" and his outward manifestations of his inner pain (crippleness) were the spastic faces and twitches that he did to make people laugh. Perhaps he was the ONLY one in on the "joke" for a LONG time. Just an observation.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 09:37 PM   #893
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The simple answer is - because our tastes and appreciation of esthetics change as we mature. George was the one more immediately photogenic, while John had the elusive gift of charm. It's as we grow up that we can appreciate the whole person better. As well, John seemed to exude a more potent sexual aura than George, which you'd appreciate more as an adult. Also, the more we like somebody the more attractive they will become to us. So the more of John's inner person appealed to you, the more his physical did.
George is attractive to many of us George girls far beyond his photogenic self. It is in fact the whole person, who he is as a spiritual and loving person which is engaging. I'll be the voice of the George girls and say we love the whole of George- from his quirks, his passions, HIS wit, his sharp edge, his gentle reflective side, his wavy hair, his sideways smile, his walk, his warmth to his friends... the WHOLE of him makes him most sexy to us.

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There's a reason that back in the day the college girls tended to be John fans, while the younger ones went more for Paul or George.
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This is a freaking FACT. I've read this from more than 3 Apple Scruffs.
I was introduced to the Beatles -back in the day- by a college girl, who's my sister in law. She is, was, and will always be.... a George girl. If I read her these remarks reducing George, she would laugh, even now!
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 09:45 PM   #894
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HC, no one is "reducing George." If we specifically singled out George and said "he wasn't this.." then THAT would be "reducing" him. But in fact, I never said that. I simply spoke up about John as you did for George. Every one has their favorite, but I have read many Apple Scruffs describing the differences in the general fans that catered to each Beatle. Is that a bad thing really? Isn't it wonderful they each had their own attraction?

Honestly, if anything, the John fans on Menlove have said nothing but wonderful and positive things about George. Read through this thread. Every person is entitled to their favorite. Don't you read when I say how much I loved/still love George?
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 09:54 PM   #895
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As soon as I read this...I thought of "Crippled Inside"... I think on a deeper level that went verbally unexpressed for many years..John realized that "One thing you can't hide, is when you're crippled inside" and his outward manifestations of his inner pain (crippleness) were the spastic faces and twitches that he did to make people laugh. Perhaps he was the ONLY one in on the "joke" for a LONG time. Just an observation.
Excellent observation! I always thought that those faces were the result of a deep insecurity. In the culture of that time, I'm sure those faces would not be considered quite as offensive as they are now. There were things that took place that were accepted that would be considered very politically incorrect these days...

But John's faces didn't stay with him forever. In fact, around when did he pretty much stop them? I noticed that they just ceased but never certain at what point.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 10:19 PM   #896
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In fact, around when did he pretty much stop them?
I think he pretty much stopped in the second half of '64... you know, around the time he started smoking pot!

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If I read her these remarks reducing George, she would laugh, even now!
HC, the funny thing is that the original quote I got about college girls going for John came from George himself. Besides, I said "tended to"... so of course there are tons of exceptions! Hey, I was a little kid when I decided John was my Beatle... nowhere near college meself!
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 10:43 PM   #897
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HC, no one is "reducing George." If we specifically singled out George and said "he wasn't this.." then THAT would be "reducing" him. But in fact, I never said that. I simply spoke up about John as you did for George. Every one has their favorite, but I have read many Apple Scruffs describing the differences in the general fans that catered to each Beatle. Is that a bad thing really? Isn't it wonderful they each had their own attraction?

Honestly, if anything, the John fans on Menlove have said nothing but wonderful and positive things about George. Read through this thread. Every person is entitled to their favorite. Don't you read when I say how much I loved/still love George?
You tend to be very kind, Scruff, and I know you love George. It's not that. The conversation though was reducing George, in tone and remark. Later remarks were made about wit and implied George was less witty.

As an aside, witty.... Ringo was often really the witty one, in ex-Beatle years. So while giving George some props, I'd send some to Ringo, too. All three were very funny. Even Paul had his moments.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 10:53 PM   #898
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HC, the funny thing is that the original quote I got about college girls going for John came from George himself. Besides, I said "tended to"... so of course there are tons of exceptions! Hey, I was a little kid when I decided John was my Beatle... nowhere near college meself!
Aspel interview? That quote was John got the college girls and George got the mystics.

Nevertheless, remarks here indicate that John had interest from college girls because of some excess of man-ness. IF John was popular among college set, it may be because that is when liberal colleges open minds to the liberal political agenda. John was the most overtly political at the time.

No need to buy into an assertion that it's because as we mature, excess man-ness appeals to us, or raw machismo, or what have you. Gentle guys rock, not because us George girls are giddy or shallow or uninformed or or or... They rock because they are sweet. And that is appealing on all kinds of levels.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 11:19 PM   #899
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George was talking about when they were Beatles, which was before John was political... besides, I was half-joking with that comment, hence the . Scruff asked for our opinions, and speaking for myself, there was no intent to "reduce" George... I think both George and Paul were beautiful and I can understand why millions of women/girls adore them. Some women like gentle guys, some of us like loudmouthed perverts.
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Last edited by Maia 66 : Dec 15, 2011 at 11:57 PM.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 11:26 PM   #900
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You tend to be very kind, Scruff, and I know you love George. It's not that. The conversation though was reducing George, in tone and remark. Later remarks were made about wit and implied George was less witty.

As an aside, witty.... Ringo was often really the witty one, in ex-Beatle years. So while giving George some props, I'd send some to Ringo, too. All three were very funny. Even Paul had his moments.
Nah, I don't really feel Ringo was as witty as John, and though George possessed a definite dry wit that I love, he still doesn't have it like John for me. You know, HC, it's all so inconsequential what any of us think if all the qualities YOU love about George still stand firm for you. I can't pretend that my love for John and his many fantastic traits is any less than it is, and you can't for your George.

Um, I'm so sorry. I never really found Paul that funny. I just remember, as a little girl, watching that scene in The Beatles First US Visit and George was being hilarious, Ringo was being a goof, John was cracking everyone up, and then there was Paul...sitting there looking like a stiff. Sorry, that's just my impression. I never really thought he was funny in the films or the interviews. I did crack up over some of his videos, but maybe not for the right reasons. And I loved the skit he did with Ringo where he's talking about he's the only Beatle and Ringo is like, "What about me?"

Ok, that is the extent of it. John was the funniest for me, and then George and Ringo are right up there in different ways. Paul, I'm sorry, no. But what does he care what I think?
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