John Lennon in My Thoughts
Posted on December 8, 2010 Posted by John Scalzi 19 Comments
Not because it’s the 30th anniversary of his death, but because (as I noted on Twitter) this is the first year that I’m older than John Lennon was when he died, and that’s kind of a weird feeling. I’ve noted before that Lennon was one of my major Heroes of Youth (the other two being Carl Sagan and H.L. Mencken, and I feel reasonably certain I was the only kid growing up having that particular trio of heroes), and here I am no longer especially young and older than Lennon will ever be.
I don’t have any particular place I’m going with this observation. It’s just something on my mind today.
Heh. My heros growing up (I’m 43 this past Oct.) were John Lennon, Robert Heinlein, and Mr. Spock. Yeah, geek status was pretty much assured.
Lennon and I were both born in 1940.
Funny enough, John Lennon is still my hero. I just had the kids learn six of his songs just last week. I had more than a few heros though, the biggest was/is Conan, The Duke, Richard Harris (I cried for two days when he died), Benny Hill, George Carlin, Red Skelton, the cast of Monty Python, Deforest Kelly, Donald Sutherland, Leonard Nemoy and William Shatner.
Heinlein, Asimov, and Nathan Hale were so important to my I names a couple of kids after them.
There were and are so many. I try to make sure to keep them in my sights even now and make sure that people around me know and learn to at least respect them for who they were and what they sometimes stood for.
Which is tricky but fun when converting people to Lennon and Conan at the same time.
Have a good day John, don’t be sad.
This drives home for me how young Lennon was when he was killed.
And reminds me again that Sagan died too young as well. I would have liked him to see the Mars rovers.
I recall similar thoughts in 2003. My birthday is December 7, so it was a quick and sad association.
Words seem very inadequate to express the impact he had on music. specifically, and the world, in general. He was always on the leading edge of what we were all struggling with in our lives and wasn’t afraid to stomp on consensus values. We could sure use someone like him today!
A few of my favorite John Lennon quotes:
“A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality.”
“Reality leaves a lot to the imagination.”
“If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace.”
This reminds me of Tom Lehrer’s quote, “It is a sobering thought that when Mozart was my age, he had been dead for two years.”
Actually, I was wondering what you think of Mencken now?
I’ve cried twice when a celebrity died. The second was Lennon. The first was Groucho Marx. (Yes, I’m old.) And I’m certain to break down when Terry Pratchett dies, although I dearly hope that will be a long time coming. I’ve shared my love of Discworld with my son, Danny, and we both began to grieve when we read about TP’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis.
I always think about Kurt Cobain, since he was born a mere five months before me. Think of all the great music we would have that we are deprived of by the demise of these amazing musicians.
I absolutely love that video…thanks…being unemployed, I’m sorta “watching the wheels” too as I scrape up jobs to pay bills until I find the prized full-time job (with or without benefits — I’ll take what I can get!). This video reminded me to keep perspective on what is best for me next…thanks John!
I remember vividly the day that John Lennon died; actually I found out in the morning when my clock radio went off and it was set to a local Detroit rock station. Howard Stern (yes that Howard Stern) was the morning drive time DJ and he was the guy who informed me of the death.
Strangely enough I only really miss celebrities. The first is Douglas Adams; the second is Freddy Mercury. Both were taken from us too soon and first was utterly shocking and surprising.
I already am planning to start bawling like a baby when I find out that Nelson Mandela dies. Of all the people who have lived during my lifetime, he is without a doubt to me, the greatest.
John Lennon was one of my heroes as a kid as well (still is one of my heroes).
Which makes this day is extra-somber for me, since one of my high school friends also died in a car accident two years ago today.
My father died when I was around 2. Most every time I glance at his picture I realize that I am older than he was when he died, inevitably followed by the thought that the picture of him in my mind is both static and relative; in the most important way, he will always be older than I am. It’s an odd feeling.
Take comfort in knowing that you have much better taste in women than he ever did.
he was a man committed to peace on earth. we could use a few of those now.
John Lenon was my mother’s favorite artist.
He was definitely great!
The other weird thought I have when I thought of him this year was that he would have been 70. Think about the 70 year olds that you know and then imagine JL at that age. Would he still have been cool or one the “Get off my lawn” types?