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Old Dec 15, 2011, 06:14 PM   #1
4iiiis
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Default Encounters, sightings, letters and more of the 1970-1980 variety

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Columnist fondly recalls meeting John Lennon





STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — All it takes is the first few bars of the song to bring the lump to my throat.

“And so this is Christmas, and what have you done? Another year over, a new one just begun ...“

Of all the Beatles, John was the last one I’d ever imagined would pen a Christmas ditty. You expected it of cuddly, correct Paul, but not brash, opinionated John. No, John Lennon was not your Christmas feel-good kind of guy. Or at least that’s what I thought until I met him.

I was just out of college at the time and didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. I’d always thought I wanted to be an actor, so I majored in theater and dramatic lit. But I was brought up by Depression-era parents who drummed the words “job security” into my head for so long, when the time came to decide whether to try my luck in the theater or get a real job, I took the safe way out.

Even so, I wasn’t going to settle for just any job. I wanted something exciting. If I couldn’t be a star myself, I wanted to work for celebrities, and since I was a major Beatles fanatic, I decided to try for a job with Abkco Industries, which had recently taken over management of the Fab Four’s Apple Records.

“We actually do happen to have an opening in our royalties department,” I was told by the office manager. “You’re not afraid of numbers, are you?”

I thought it best not to tell him that when Sister Mary Benignus told me I’d gotten a 67 on the geometry Regents and I realized I’d never, ever, have to take math again, I ran into St. Sylvester’s and lit a candle.

So I started working in the royalties department, struggling with profit and loss sheets, praying every day that I wasn’t shortchanging John, Paul, George and Ringo of money they were due, and patiently waiting to see one of them walk down the hall.

It took a few months, but finally, it was going to happen. According to A&R (artist & repertoire) assistant May Pang, John and Yoko were coming in. I freaked. Quietly, of course, because I didn’t want anyone to think I wasn’t cool, but I freaked, nonetheless. And not just because one of the Beatles was coming in, but because it was John. Unlike the other three, he always seemed somewhat forbidding to me. In fact, he scared me.

And then there he was, walking past my desk, the wisp of a wry smile playing about his mouth. As he walked, he looked this way and that, as if trying to make eye contact with us mere mortals, unlike Yoko, who looked straight ahead. Yoko always looked straight ahead; not John.

That was the first of many times John came into the office. Two of those times stand out in my mind. The first is the day John and Yoko walked into the elevator after me. I froze; It was one thing to have John Lennon walk past my desk; it was another to be in an elevator with him.

Yoko slinked into a corner but John looked straight at me. He must’ve seen the panic in my face, so when he went to press the button for our floor and saw it already had been pressed, he turned and said, “So, you’re going up to the 19th floor too?”

And what did I answer?

“Doesn’t everyone, eventually?”

To this day, I don’t know where that came from or what it meant. I’m sure John realized in trying to make me feel more comfortable, he’d only made things worse. It was a silent ride after that.

The second of John’s visits to the office that stands out occurred when he was recording “Happy Christmas, War Is Over.” It was in summer, and he’d come in to talk to the A&R guy about setting up the session. John was bringing in the Boys Choir of Harlem and he wanted to have a big, decorated tree, and lots of toys and gifts to give the children to create a holiday feeling in the studio. In all the times he’d come into the office, I don’t think I’d ever seen him so animated or happy as he was that day.

Which is why 30 years after Mark David Chapman made his name by shooting John Lennon outside the Dakota, hearing that familiar, nasally voice singing “And so this is Christmas ...” moves me to tears every time. Especially since it starts being played right around the anniversary of John’s death, Dec. 8.

John Lennon was the last person I’d ever expect to write a Christmas song, but I’m glad he did because it has become part of the soundtrack of my life.

I’m also glad I lied about my math prowess that day way back when, because if I hadn’t, I wouldn’t have the healing memory of a smiling John Lennon planning the perfect kids’ Christmas party to go along with it.
http://blog.silive.com/is_it_just_me...hn_lennon.html

Last edited by 4iiiis : Dec 15, 2011 at 06:24 PM. Reason: typing on a stupid little netbook w/trackpad!
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 06:31 PM   #2
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Default ~ A John Lennon Story ~ by Peter R. McCormack

~ A John Lennon Story ~ by Peter R. McCormack

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The Introduction

At the risk of telling one John Lennon Story too many, I have a short tale to tell about a group of enthusiastic Beatle fans and the events leading up to one of their annual Beatle events. Althought the story begins in 1965 I will spare you the details of the next 15 years and begin with the narrative. Sometime in 1978 two avid Beatle fans, Gregg Finley and Rob Feltus organized the first "Beatle Extravaganza". I shall be ever grateful for their creativity and initiative, for without them the events of this story would never have taken place. Following a successful Beatles' Extravaganzas in December 1978 and 1979, I offered to take my turn in organizing the 1980 fest which would end up being called "Magical Mystery Tour 1980." The event was another success for this small group of Beatle fans celebrating the Christmas Season and the Extravaganza in Saint John, New Brunswick on Canada's east coast. Complete with: the usual contests; a Magical Mystery Tour by bus in which even the bus driver didn't know where he was going; and a stop for fish and chips, served on paper, of course. I still have my wizard suit today, nearly 20 years later, but that is another story. My story begins several months before the December 1980 event.


Beatles' Extravaganza Admission Buttons

1978
First Annual
MBE Award

1979
Second Annual
"Night Before" Pin

1980
Third Annual
"Roll Up" Pass


The Correspondence

Beginning in late August, I began writing on a weekly basis to invite John Lennon to the Annual Beatle Extravaganza. Regular as clockwork, I churned out one letter after another which I mailed to the Dakota in New York City. The theme of these letters was bold, consistent and humorous (at least from my perspective). A portion of the letter mused "John, we are have an Annual Extravaganza celebrating the music of the Beatles and are cordially inviting you to attend the festivities. In the unlikely event that you will not be attending this premier happening would you kindly have the courtesy to send off a short note that I could share with my friends at our event. Yours truly, Peter McCormack." I'll spare you all the additional groveling details and just let you know that I mailed out ten of these literary masterpieces. If any of them surface in the New York area I will be suitably embarassed should my the creative attempts to capture John's attention ever become public.


The Package

Late in November 1980, I visited the post office and found a form in my mailbox notifying me that a parcel had arrived. I handed in the form to the postal clerk who tossed me an oversized envelope in a friendly and carefree manner. It was constructed of a very rough brown material, addressed in blue writing and had a couple of postal marks stamped on it. In the upper left hand corner was the return address "Lennono Studio One, 1 West 72nd St. Datoka, NY NY 10023." I began to shake and quickly took the package out to the car. I gazed futher at the envelop which described the contents for customs purposes a simply "record." I just sat there in the car staring at the envelope...


Envelope from LENNONO STUDIO ONE


The Inspection

I began to open it but then remember stopping for just a moment to savour the moment and quickly scan the postmark. Two things were going through my mind. Could this really be from Lennon? Is it possible that this is just some public relations response that has nothing to do with John Lennon in any direct way? After all the envelope says "record" I want a note. I can buy his records pretty much anywhere. So when was this package sent and by whom. One last glance before I open it. Why am I not ripping it open? So what does the postmark reveal...


Package Postmarked November 21, 1980.


The Opening

I tear open the right side of the envelop and pull out the contents quickly. There is another envelope sealed inside that has "LENNONO STUDIO ONE" stamped in the upper right hand corner and a repeated pattern of printed words that reads "Promotional Materials." I can now clearly see and feel that this is indeed a record album. Although excited, I am a little disappointed that there is no accompanying note. I tear the right side of this envelope, just as I had the brown outer package, drinking in all the visual and tactile sensations I can.

Inside envelope of Lennon Package.


The Album

At this point I start to slow down a bit and as I see the mess I have made tearing the promotional materials sleeve, I gingerly slide out the record album. On the front side of the "Double Fantasy" Album I notice a bold stamp printed into the surface of the record album sleeve that reads...

Double Fantansy Promotional Record Seal.


The Note

Of course I am thrilled. The response, the handwritten information on the outside of the envelope. This is from "THE DAKOTA." Could John Lennon have asked that this be done? Had John even seen my letters? Ten weeks of creative literary juices. Were they all for not? I mean promotional materials, surely Lennon must have someone take care of such things. He must have someone to deal with persistent fans like myself. So I turn the album over and there is a nice picture of John and Yoko outside of a building that I assumed must be the Dakota in New York. As I gaze quickly over the album I notice a note in the upper right hand corner that has been indeliably etched in my heart and the temporal lobes of my brain for the past 18 years. "For Peter and friends, Love John Lennon and Yoko Ono 1980." Complete with drawings. I have included this image below along with an enlargement of the note, signature and drawings.


Note and Signature on Back of Double Fantasy Album.


Enlarged John Lennon Signature, Note and Drawings.


The End

This was an experience of which I could only have hoped to dream. I was never lucky enough to see the Beatles perform live but I will cherish this memory forever. You can just imagine the expression on the faces of friends at the Extravaganza as they received their personal message from John. This helped in some small way deal with the tragedy of his death on December 8, 1980. Strawberry Fields Forever.

Article Submitted on October 9, 1998
© 1998 Peter McCormack. All rights reserved.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 06:34 PM   #3
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Default NORMLcon 2011: Dr. Grinspoon on Meeting John Lennon and His First High

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Old Dec 15, 2011, 06:36 PM   #4
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Default Meet John Lennon’s Optometrist



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The Man with Kaleidoscope Eyes
By Gary Tracy, O.D.

I was John Lennon’s optometrist for the last four years of his life, when he and Yoko lived on the Upper West Side of New York City. Thirty years later, patients are still asking what he was like. Here are some of my memories.

A Day In the Life
I first met John and Yoko in 1975. I had opened my practice a year earlier, at 284 Columbus Avenue. Back then, the neighborhood was still kind of “iffy.”

One winter night near closing, I noticed a couple gazing into the store, their faces pressed against the window. Minutes later, my friend Neil, owner of the flower shop next door, stopped in to tell me “That was John Lennon and Yoko Ono!”

I was excited, but not shocked. John and Yoko had moved into the Dakota apartment building on West 72nd Street in 1973, and sightings of the famous couple on the Upper West Side were common.

The next night, again near closing, I was finishing up with a patient when I heard an unmistakable British-accented voice inquiring about an eye exam. My receptionist—a middle-aged woman from Guyana who didn’t recognize our new walk-in—replied that she would be glad to set up an appointment.

Immediately, I bolted from the examination to explain that I was nearly done. Could I examine him momentarily? John agreed.

I remember my heart pounding while thinking, “I’d better get this prescription right!” I imagined headlines: “John Lennon Trips During Concert, Blames Optometrist for Poor Prescription,” or “Ex-Beatle Now Blind—Optometrist Charged with Misdiagnosis.”

Despite my nervousness, I managed to get through the exam. John picked out some new frames. He always knew exactly what he wanted, staying true to the round or slightly off-round (P3) shapes he had made famous as a Beatle. He also insisted on cable temples (wraparounds), explaining they kept his frames on while jumping around on stage.

At the end of the visit, I asked John for his telephone number to let him know when his glasses were ready. He appeared hesitant. But he seemed pleased, even amused, when I offered to write it on the back of his file in code, and gave me the number.

The Ballad of John and Yoko
John was a regular for the next four years. Between 1975 and 1979, John had two complete eye exams, purchased more than a dozen pairs of glasses, and dropped in frequently for adjustments and repairs.

John and Yoko almost always arrived around closing time. After taking care of business, they would sit and chat for a while. Just small talk, usually about things going on in the neighborhood.

During those four years, Yoko never availed herself of my services. She mostly stayed in the background, always quiet, polite and non-assuming. Although John often came in alone, I felt that when Yoko was present, she had a calming, soothing effect on him.
One day, John came with his son Julian, who was visiting from England. In a fatherly manner, he recommended that Julian should make sure that his frames had wraparound temples, similar to John’s preference. Julian selected an aviator shape that was popular at the time, and I managed to find one with the wraparound temples, so he could fulfill his father’s recommendation.

One day John and Yoko dropped by to pick up new eyeglasses. John was toting a tiny baby in a papoose carrier on his back. They told me that this was the first time they’d ventured out of the Dakota in public with their newly born son Sean.

Working Class Hero
I never asked John about The Beatles or being a celebrity. From what I learned later, he had an ordinary, blue-collar upbringing. I really think he enjoyed being in an environment where he was treated like an ordinary person.

Still, I remained somewhat in awe. One day, knowing John was coming in, I brought in a beat up copy of “A Spaniard in the Works,” an obscure book of John’s sketches and poems I’d purchased for 25 cents in one of the neighborhood antique stores. I was secretly hoping he would offer to sign it. He seemed pleased to see the book, but did not offer to autograph it—and I didn’t feel comfortable asking.

Another time, John and I were chatting in my office when he suddenly paused in mid-sentence: “Is that Paul?” I was taken aback, because there was no one else in the office or visible on the sidewalk outside the window. I asked John whom he meant. He had heard Paul McCartney’s voice singing from my radio upstairs. I wasn’t even aware the radio was on. I realized then how finely attuned John was to the music of his former band mate.

Several long-time patients fondly remember encountering John in my office, offering advice on the frames they were trying on. One patient recalls trying on contact lenses when John’s voice surprised him from behind: “I tried to wear them, but the only way I could keep them in my bloody eyes was to get bloody stoned first.”

Help!
One afternoon, walking back from lunch to my office on Columbus Avenue, I spotted John coming toward me. He seemed shaken. He told me that someone had been following him all morning, and asked me to accompany him. He thought that if we drew attention to this person, then he would leave. Pointing to a disheveled person with a trench coat, John started yelling, “That’s the person who’s been following me.” I joined John, pointing and yelling, “That’s the person!”

It worked. He sped up and disappeared around the corner. John and I walked to my office, where I locked the door. John stayed until he was sure the person was completely gone.

On one of his last visits to my office, John finally strayed from his usual metal round frame. Wanting something different for his new sunglasses, he selected a rectangular, clear plastic frame with dark gray lenses. I believe these are the glasses that appear in photographs with bloodstains on them, on the tragic night he was killed on December 8, 1980.

A couple of years after John’s death, Yoko came in for an exam. Seated in the examination chair, tears welled in her eyes as she reminisced about John, and expressed concern that Sean was now old enough to recognize and hear negative publicity about his father. She asked if I would meet with Sean to share my experience with the “real” John. I agreed, but a meeting was never arranged. I never saw or heard from Yoko again.

Years later, Sean did come in, with a prescription in hand. I made many pairs of glasses for him over the years.

When I was young, I sometimes questioned whether I’d made the right decision to become an optometrist and move to New York. But it has been a privilege to be a part of the Upper West Side for so many years.

Being an independent optometrist in New York City has given me the opportunity to know many fascinating and diverse people, both celebrities and non-celebrities. Where else would I have had the opportunity to meet someone like John Lennon?
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 07:02 PM   #5
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During those four years, Yoko never availed herself of my services. She mostly stayed in the background, always quiet, polite and non-assuming. Although John often came in alone, I felt that when Yoko was present, she had a calming, soothing effect on him.
One day, John came with his son Julian, who was visiting from England. In a fatherly manner, he recommended that Julian should make sure that his frames had wraparound temples, similar to John’s preference. Julian selected an aviator shape that was popular at the time, and I managed to find one with the wraparound temples, so he could fulfill his father’s recommendation.
Aww, that's so sweet!

Thanks for this thread 4iiiis! You beat me to making one, so you probably saw that I was thinking of doing so via that 1978 encounter thread. You little bugger!
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 07:09 PM   #6
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Great idea for a thread!! All the encounters show how John put people at ease, how gracious he was. Just lovely.

Funny thing ~ My former optometrist was named Dr. Greenspoon. I doubt he was a stoner, though...

I've read some great encounters here and there on the 'net... I'll look for them to post here.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 11:13 PM   #7
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Can't remember if I've posted this encounter before, but it belongs in this thread anyway, so here it is:

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The bicyclist pedaled closer, his face unshaven, his eyes hidden beneath round wire-rimmed glasses. Hair spilled from his wide-brimmed hat. His clothes fluttered in the breeze. "How you doing?" he shouted, waving hello. A hippie, I thought, dismissing him as I walked up the busy street with my family. He coasted past, vanishing down the road. Something about him seemed familiar. A minute later another bicycle raced by: a Japanese woman, with long, curly hair—and an unmistakable face. "That's Yoko Ono," I said to myself. Oh, my…That "hippie" had to be John Lennon. What are they doing here in Karuizawa?

My husband, Stephen, was a minister and we moved to this Japanese mountain town five years earlier, in 1971, to work at the missionary camp his parents managed, a place where people came eager to experience a new world and deepen their faith. But it was hard work raising our three young children, Becky, seven, Peter, five, and Debby, two, on top of the chores that had to be done. I cooked three meals a day for up to 50 people. Nights I set up the coffeehouse we ran.

"Come to the Power and Light Company," read the signs we put up along the machi, the main street in town, inviting the community for free coffee, cake and conversation in English.

Missionaries had been coming to Karuizawa for years to enjoy the cool breezes coming off the evergreen slopes of Mt. Asama, the charming little shops that lined the machi, which sold cherry-wood carvings and kokeshi dolls. The Japanese elite fell in love with Karuizawa too. Emperors, diplomats and entertainers built grand, Victorian-style homes with gorgeous moss gardens. That must be why John is here, I thought. He must own one of those mansions.

I wasn't a Beatles fan. Back in Oregon where I grew up, I adored Pat Boone. Beatlemania shocked me—the moppy hairstyles and the loud, raw rock 'n' roll. "We're more popular than Jesus now," the papers quoted John as saying. I was appalled. How could he be so arrogant? I wasn't surprised disillusioned Beatles fans burned their records in response. Anyway, I decided to put the John and Yoko sighting out of my mind. I'll never see them again, I bet.

That Sunday, as always, missionaries from the different denominations in town packed into Union Church. Midway through the service, I heard murmuring in the back. I strained my neck to see. A man and woman were walking down the aisle, looking for an open seat. You guessed it. John and Yoko. They settled in, but the whispering didn't stop.

"Who is that?" "He's one of the Beatles." "I didn't know they went to church…" The minister cleared his throat, loudly, and everyone went back to listening to his sermon. But I couldn't focus. What was John doing in our church?

Later that week Peter and Debby played in the sandbox in our yard. I sat in a lawn chair, keeping an eye on them while some people from the church were visiting. I just wanted to relax before I had to bake the cakes for the coffee shop. Suddenly two bicycles slowed down at our house and pedaled into our yard. It was them! Their son, Sean, was sitting in a child's seat attached to John's handlebars. Stunned, I got up and walked toward them. What do I say to the most famous Beatle of all? "I saw your signs on the machi and thought they were clever," John said, breaking the silence. "I was telling Yoko here that we needed to see what it was all about." The camp volunteers saw who'd showed up and quickly began gathering. "What are you doing in town?" I managed to ask.

"We're staying at a cabin owned by Yoko's family," he told me. It was crazy. John Lennon, coming here because he saw our sign?

One woman pushed in front. She had a reputation for being blunt. "I read about your divorce—how could you leave your first marriage?" she asked. "What are you doing now that the Beatles have broken up?" Everyone crowded closer. I expected John and his family to turn around and pedal away as fast as they could.

But John just smiled. "Right now I am putting my music on hold to spend time with my wife and son," he said. The woman didn't seem quite satisfied.

"Do you belong to a church?" she asked.

"Of course," he said. "I'm C. of E."

A worried look came across the woman's face. "The See…what?"

John laughed playfully. "The Church of England. Haven't you heard of them?"

More questions came, and he listened to each, answering kindly and politely. He didn't contradict anyone in any way. One of the most famous people in the world—notorious even, to some—in our humble yard, being scrutinized by people he didn't know, and taking it all in stride. Even I had to admit, I was surprised by his patience.

"How could you say those things about being bigger than Jesus?" someone asked. I had wondered that same thing myself.

John shook his head. "When we talk to reporters, we play around with them," he said. "We're just a music group. Don't people know that Jesus is far greater than we are?" Finally, the crowd seemed satisfied. Maybe he wasn't just some arrogant rock star.

Just then there was a commotion in the sandbox. Debby had hit Peter with a plastic shovel. I knelt down to placate the two of them.

"How old are your kids?" John asked.

"Debby's two and Peter is five."

"Sean's about the same age as your little girl, but he's so quiet and shy. Maybe he could benefit from playing with a girl like that." I looked at Sean as John reached down and gently ruffled his hair. In that moment, John didn't seem like a hippie anymore—he seemed like any other concerned dad.

We talked a little more about our kids. Before I knew it, an hour had passed, and he, Yoko and Sean prepared to pedal off on their bikes. "It's good to talk to all of you," John said. "I've been looking for something this summer, something spiritual," he continued. "I've been speaking with a lot of the missionaries I've met here, about life and what it all means. Thank you for your words." He waved goodbye—and I waved back as they rode off, little Sean perched on his daddy's handlebars.

I had made all sorts of assumptions about John Lennon—that he was arrogant, disrespectful, antireligious, a rebellious hippie. But the man I met was none of those things. In fact, he was modest and self-effacing. Not like my idea of a rock star at all!

I never did speak to John again. But I hope we helped him that summer. He certainly helped me. He reminded me of why I had come to Japan in the first place. To welcome people—not to judge them. And to grow in my understanding of the world.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 11:25 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Maia 66
I had made all sorts of assumptions about John Lennon—that he was arrogant, disrespectful, antireligious, a rebellious hippie. But the man I met was none of those things. In fact, he was modest and self-effacing. Not like my idea of a rock star at all!

I never did speak to John again. But I hope we helped him that summer. He certainly helped me. He reminded me of why I had come to Japan in the first place. To welcome people—not to judge them. And to grow in my understanding of the world.
I loved it Maia! Thank you so much for sharing.
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Old Dec 15, 2011, 11:32 PM   #9
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Default Meeting John Twice...

Source: http://udel.edu/~mm/beatles/stories/elizabeth.html


I have encountered a Beatle twice in my life. I know that sounds impossible but it's true. Both times it was my favorite Beatle, John Lennon. The first time was around 1968. I was living in New York at the time and my friend had entered a radio contest. She won two tickets for the New York premiere of Yellow Submarine. She chose me to go with her! We got in our seats and before the movie started, a murmur moved through the crowd. John Lennon was walking down the aisle! I was in the aisle seat and I looked up as he walked by. He was so close I could have touched him but I didn't. None of the other Beatles were there, he was the only one, but it was still an exhilirating experience.

The other time I encountered John Lennon was years later. It was 1975 and I was 23 and working at New York Hospital. Yoko Ono had just given birth to her son Sean. As a medical technician, I was the person who got to analyze her blood. I didn't draw it from her though, it was in the lab for me to test. Something exciting happened that day though. I remember walking down the hall, clipboard under my arm. I waited for the elevator and when it opened, I got inside. I looked over and to my great surprise, leaning against the side of the elevator was John Lennon. I held my breath. I couldn't believe it was him. I knew he was in the hospital but I never thought that I would actually see him. His hair was long, his glasses were sliding down his nose and a five o'clock shadow was visible on his tired face. He looked up and greeted me with a smile. No one spoke though. I was in the elevator for a few minutes with my favorite Beatle. I had grown up with John Lennon. It only seemed like yesterday that he and the other Beatles were singing She Loves You and Ticket to Ride. When my floor arrived, he made sure the doors stayed open for me, and nodded. I took one look back and then the doors shut on the greatest musician of all time, John Lennon.

My experiences mean the world to me. I feel so lucky to have encountered my favorite Beatle twice.
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Old Dec 16, 2011, 12:44 PM   #10
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This was my favorite! Love it.
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Old Dec 16, 2011, 09:17 PM   #11
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Old Dec 17, 2011, 01:12 PM   #12
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What a wonderful thread

Reading stories from people who have met John shows so clearly how different he was from the superficial (and often false) image many have of the ex-Beatle. John wasn't at all arrogant or big-mouthed, just damned normal.

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Old Jan 01, 2012, 05:16 PM   #13
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^ ^ ^ Bump ^ ^ ^
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Old Jan 01, 2012, 05:34 PM   #14
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Source: http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2006...-imagine-that/

My One And Only Unforgettable Encounter With John Lennon – Imagine That!



After the “English Invasion” of the U.S. in 1964, at the urging of my friends, Paul Simon and Jackie DeShannon, I decided to go to London to promote my songs and productions. Bess Coleman, one of the Beatles press officers, with whom I was writing songs , brought me into the groups inner circle and I traveled with them on several stops of their, “Beatles For Sale” promotional tour.

Backstage at a venue in White City, George and Paul were playing guitar and singing to relax in with a handful of their old mates and confidantes. Bess introduced me to them, and just as Paul smiled and handed me the guitar for me to take a turn…John majestically strode into the room. Bess introduced me to him as the American who wrote the recent top ten UK hit by Helen Shapiro, “Queen For Tonight” (Raleigh/ Wayne) John, with a wide grin, shook my hand and in a deep voice sang a parody of my song, ” I am a Queen For Tonight…but will I be a King tomorrow?”…which had the room in hysterics! Unfortunately, I didn’t know they were laughing at John, who was poking fun at the husky voiced 16 year old Shapiro’s sexuality, which had recently been questioned by the press…I thought they were laughing at me! I was embarrassed, but managed a smile as I passed on playing one of my songs and handed the guitar over to John, who sat down and sang, ” I’m A Loser”.

Although that was my only personal encounter with John Lennon, it wasn’t the only connection I had. The first was in 1968, when I found a song, “John You Went Too Far This Time”, a reaction to the John and Yoko naked “Two Virgins” album cover, recorded by Sissy Spacek, whom I discovered and renamed “Rainbo”.
The second was concerning the original artwork of “Clouds” used on the “Imagine” album cover, which I was given as security from a friend who needed a fast $100.00 loan! I never asked my friend how he got it, but I knew I had to enjoy the painting in “secrecy” for as long as it was in my possession! Then one day, about three years after John’s assasination, my now well-heeled friend who gave me this treasure in trust, offered to buy it back. Although I knew it must be worth upwards of a $100,000 dollars, I just asked him to return the hundred dollar loan I made him originally. To this day I wonder was that the right choice?

Anyway, here’s a glimpse of this beautiful piece of art that hung for years in my office at Warner Brothers music. You can see it in the upper right half of the photo




Artie Wayne with Singer and Songwriter Patti Dahlstrom
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Old Jan 01, 2012, 05:40 PM   #15
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Default Well wouldn't you know...Uri Geller says Lennon had a "DEEP SPIRITUALITY"

Source: http://www.john-lennon.com/thenighta...johnlennon.htm

THE NIGHT ALIENS CALLED ON JOHN LENNON

by Uri Geller




They came in the darkness and had bug-like faces. Stranger still, they left a weird egg-shaped object behind. Uri Geller recalls his friend John Lennon's encounter with the unknown

There is an egg-like object in my pocket. It was given to me by John Lennon. And it was given to him by . . . well, I'll come to that.




Mystery object: Geller with Lennon's 'alien egg'

We were eating in a restaurant in New York City. Yoko was with us, so this was after their big break-up and reconciliation. Yoko was expecting their child, Sean, and John was excited - he was going to love this baby day and night: feed him, change him, teach him to talk, teach him to love music.

He did all of that. And he was going to watch him grow into adolescence, through the tumbles from bicycles and terrors of schooldays, from reading to dating to college. He never got to do that. John started talking about UFOs.

He said he believed life existed on other planets, that it had visited us, that maybe it was observing us right now. He took me to a quieter, darker table, lit a cigarette and pointed its glowing tip at my face.

"You believe in this stuff, right?" he asked me. "Well, you ain't f---in' gonna believe this.

"About six months ago, I was asleep in my bed, with Yoko, at home, in the Dakota Building. And suddenly, I wasn't asleep. Because there was this blazing light round the door. It was shining through the cracks and the keyhole, like someone was out there with searchlights, or the apartment was on fire.

"That was what I thought - intruders, or fire. I leapt out of bed, and Yoko wasn't awake at all, she was lying there like a stone, and I pulled open the door. There were these four people out there."

"Fans?" I asked him.

"Well they didn't want my f---in' autograph. They were, like, little. Bug-like. Big bug eyes and little bug mouths and they were scuttling at me like roaches."

He broke off and stared at me.

"I've told this to two other people, right? One was Yoko, and she believes me. She says she doesn't understand it, but she knows I wouldn't lie to her. I told one other person, and she didn't believe me.

"She laughed it off, and then she said I must have been high. Well, I've been high, I mean right out of it, a lot of times, and I never saw anything on acid that was as weird as those f---in' bugs, man.




Friends: Lennon and Geller in conversation

"I was straight that night. I wasn't dreaming and I wasn't tripping. There were these creatures, like people but not like people, in my apartment."

"What did they do to you?" Lennon swore again. "How do you know they did anything to me, man?" "Because they must have come for a reason."

"You're right. They did something. But I don't know what it was. I tried to throw them out, but, when I took a step towards them, they kind of pushed me back. I mean, they didn't touch me. It was like they just willed me. Pushed me with willpower and telepathy."

"And then what?"

"I don't know. Something happened. Don't ask me what. Either I've forgotten, blocked it out, or they won't let me remember. But after a while they weren't there and I was just lying on the bed, next to Yoko, only I was on the covers.

"And she woke up and looked at me and asked what was wrong. I couldn't tell her at first. But I had this thing in my hands. They gave it to me."

"What was it?" Lennon dug into his jeans pocket. "I've been carrying it round ever since, wanting to ask somebody the same question. You have it. Maybe you'll know."

I took the metal, egg-like object and turned it over in the dim light. It seemed solid and smooth, and I could make out no markings. "I've never seen anything like it."

"Keep it." John told me. "It's too weird for me. If it's my ticket to another planet, I don't want to go there."

When we first met on November 28, 1974, almost exactly 30 years ago, he was suffering terribly from his separation from Yoko. His drug abuse and drinking, linked to the sorrow of Yoko's recent miscarriage, had driven them apart, and John desperately wanted to mend the relationship.

He just didn't know how to make the first move. The night Lennon and I were introduced, Elton John was playing at Madison Square Gardens. Elton was trying to persuade the ex-Beatle to get up on stage with him, and John was torn - he wanted to perform but he was scared.

Finally, he turned to me and offered a deal, as though I were a negotiator sent by God: "I'll sing," he said, "but you have to make Yoko call me."

Like all of John's jokes, this one was a plea from the heart, wrapped in a sardonic quip. Yoko phoned John out of the blue, 36 hours later. I think John always believed I had beamed a mind-control ray at her. For my part, I think that of all the synchronicities that have shaped my life, that was one of the strangest.

John Lennon was a compulsive doodler. The last autograph he ever signed, 15 minutes before Mark Chapman gunned him down outside his home at the Dakota Building, on December 9, 1980, features a double portrait of himself and his wife, Yoko Ono. The drawings are done in a couple of lines - the style is unmistakable and so are the faces.

I always marvelled at John's skill as an artist. There is no doubt that, if he'd been tone deaf and tuneless, the boy who created The Beatles could have become a successful painter or illustrator. During the last year of his life, we met most weeks to chat over a coffee in one of the hotels near our New York homes.

Sometimes John would bring Sean, who was about four years old then. The rocker had put his music career on hold while the child was small. John once told me how bitterly he regretted that while his first son, Julian, was a toddler, he himself was devoting his energies to the stage or the studio, or would be out partying with friends.

"You don't get those years back," he said. "I'm not going to miss a minute while Sean is growing up."

That is the greatest tragedy of my friend's death. He had finally learned what made him happy, and then he was robbed of it. What really interested me about John was not his incredible life, his fame or his talent, but his deep spirituality.

I too was working out what made me happy - I'd realised at last that buying watches and eating six helpings of dessert before making myself throw up was not the path to nirvana.

The shock of Lennon's murder was one of the powerful forces that drove me to quit New York and spend a year in Japan, undergoing a spiritual detox. John spoke with passion about Japanese views of life, and I am certain that Yoko's philosophies were at the core of his last years.

I was woken on the day John was shot by a call from a friend, Roland, a publisher who lived opposite the Dakota.

"He's dead," Roland sobbed. "They killed John." I dressed in a few seconds and ran across town: somehow I had to see the house to believe the news. The radio reports weren't enough.

If John really were dead, if this wasn't some sick media hoax, then there would be people outside his home with candles and prayer bells. They were there, in their hundreds already.

I didn't have to push my way through the crowd; I simply stood and stared across the road, and then walked away through Central Park with the tears running down my face.

Now, 24 years on, when I hold the cold, metal egg in my fist, I have a strong sensation that John knew more about this object than he told me. Maybe it didn't come with an instruction manual, but I think John knew what it was for.

And whatever that purpose was - communication? healing? a first-class intergalactic ticket? - it scared him. I wish I could have warned him . . . that however scary aliens seem, it's the humans you have to fear.
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Old Jan 01, 2012, 06:09 PM   #16
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Default someone had this encounter...

cause apparently they kept the note....a miffed john.



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Old Jan 01, 2012, 06:20 PM   #17
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i find the alien encounter very interesting

though sadly i cant find the alien in my alien encyclopedia. which had both fake and real aliens
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Old Jan 01, 2012, 06:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wallrus59 View Post
cause apparently they kept the note....a miffed john.



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Old Jan 01, 2012, 06:38 PM   #19
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Source: http://www.guideposts.org/personal-g...-grow?page=0,1

I SAW HIM STANDING THERE: My encounter with John Lennon was brief, but it helped me grow

By Carol Fleenor, Turner, Oregon



[b]The bicyclist pedaled closer, his face unshaven, his eyes hidden beneath round wire-rimmed glasses. Hair spilled from his wide-brimmed hat. His clothes fluttered in the breeze. "How you doing?" he shouted, waving hello. A hippie, I thought, dismissing him as I walked up the busy street with my family. He coasted past, vanishing down the road. Something about him seemed familiar. A minute later another bicycle raced by: a Japanese woman, with long, curly hair—and an unmistakable face. "That's Yoko Ono," I said to myself. Oh, my…That "hippie" had to be John Lennon. What are they doing here in Karuizawa?

My husband, Stephen, was a minister and we moved to this Japanese mountain town five years earlier, in 1971, to work at the missionary camp his parents managed, a place where people came eager to experience a new world and deepen their faith. But it was hard work raising our three young children, Becky, seven, Peter, five, and Debby, two, on top of the chores that had to be done. I cooked three meals a day for up to 50 people. Nights I set up the coffeehouse we ran.

"Come to the Power and Light Company," read the signs we put up along the machi, the main street in town, inviting the community for free coffee, cake and conversation in English.

Missionaries had been coming to Karuizawa for years to enjoy the cool breezes coming off the evergreen slopes of Mt. Asama, the charming little shops that lined the machi, which sold cherry-wood carvings and kokeshi dolls. The Japanese elite fell in love with Karuizawa too. Emperors, diplomats and entertainers built grand, Victorian-style homes with gorgeous moss gardens. That must be why John is here, I thought. He must own one of those mansions.

I wasn't a Beatles fan. Back in Oregon where I grew up, I adored Pat Boone. Beatlemania shocked me—the moppy hairstyles and the loud, raw rock 'n' roll. "We're more popular than Jesus now," the papers quoted John as saying. I was appalled. How could he be so arrogant? I wasn't surprised disillusioned Beatles fans burned their records in response. Anyway, I decided to put the John and Yoko sighting out of my mind. I'll never see them again, I bet.

That Sunday, as always, missionaries from the different denominations in town packed into Union Church. Midway through the service, I heard murmuring in the back. I strained my neck to see. A man and woman were walking down the aisle, looking for an open seat. You guessed it. John and Yoko. They settled in, but the whispering didn't stop.

"Who is that?" "He's one of the Beatles." "I didn't know they went to church…" The minister cleared his throat, loudly, and everyone went back to listening to his sermon. But I couldn't focus. What was John doing in our church?

Later that week Peter and Debby played in the sandbox in our yard. I sat in a lawn chair, keeping an eye on them while some people from the church were visiting. I just wanted to relax before I had to bake the cakes for the coffee shop. Suddenly two bicycles slowed down at our house and pedaled into our yard. It was them! Their son, Sean, was sitting in a child's seat attached to John's handlebars. Stunned, I got up and walked toward them. What do I say to the most famous Beatle of all? "I saw your signs on the machi and thought they were clever," John said, breaking the silence. "I was telling Yoko here that we needed to see what it was all about." The camp volunteers saw who'd showed up and quickly began gathering. "What are you doing in town?" I managed to ask.

We're staying at a cabin owned by Yoko's family," he told me. It was crazy. John Lennon, coming here because he saw our sign?

One woman pushed in front. She had a reputation for being blunt. "I read about your divorce—how could you leave your first marriage?" she asked. "What are you doing now that the Beatles have broken up?" Everyone crowded closer. I expected John and his family to turn around and pedal away as fast as they could.

But John just smiled. "Right now I am putting my music on hold to spend time with my wife and son," he said. The woman didn't seem quite satisfied.

"Do you belong to a church?" she asked.

"Of course," he said. "I'm C. of E."

A worried look came across the woman's face. "The See…what?"

John laughed playfully. "The Church of England. Haven't you heard of them?"

More questions came, and he listened to each, answering kindly and politely. He didn't contradict anyone in any way. One of the most famous people in the world—notorious even, to some—in our humble yard, being scrutinized by people he didn't know, and taking it all in stride. Even I had to admit, I was surprised by his patience.

"How could you say those things about being bigger than Jesus?" someone asked. I had wondered that same thing myself.

John shook his head. "When we talk to reporters, we play around with them," he said. "We're just a music group. Don't people know that Jesus is far greater than we are?" Finally, the crowd seemed satisfied. Maybe he wasn't just some arrogant rock star.

Just then there was a commotion in the sandbox. Debby had hit Peter with a plastic shovel. I knelt down to placate the two of them.

"How old are your kids?" John asked.

"Debby's two and Peter is five."

"Sean's about the same age as your little girl, but he's so quiet and shy. Maybe he could benefit from playing with a girl like that." I looked at Sean as John reached down and gently ruffled his hair. In that moment, John didn't seem like a hippie anymore—he seemed like any other concerned dad.

We talked a little more about our kids. Before I knew it, an hour had passed, and he, Yoko and Sean prepared to pedal off on their bikes. "It's good to talk to all of you," John said. "I've been looking for something this summer, something spiritual," he continued. "I've been speaking with a lot of the missionaries I've met here, about life and what it all means. Thank you for your words." He waved goodbye—and I waved back as they rode off, little Sean perched on his daddy's handlebars.

I had made all sorts of assumptions about John Lennon—that he was arrogant, disrespectful, antireligious, a rebellious hippie. But the man I met was none of those things. In fact, he was modest and self-effacing. Not like my idea of a rock star at all!

I never did speak to John again. But I hope we helped him that summer. He certainly helped me. He reminded me of why I had come to Japan in the first place. To welcome people—not to judge them. And to grow in my understanding of the world.
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Old Jan 01, 2012, 06:45 PM   #20
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i find this a good encounter...what did george say...?

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