When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy.’ They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.
~ Anonymous (but erroneously attributed to John Lennon)
On Dec. 8th, 1980, I was in bed listening to the radio when suddenly, in a voice labored by heavy breathing and halting words, the disc jockey broke the news that John Lennon had been shot and killed in front of his New York City apartment building. The news ransacked my brain.
The Beatles weren’t just a rock band; they gave us an identity. Their songs weren’t simply catchy tunes or stray memorable lyrics. The music told us who we were. It pointed us in a whole new direction. The simplicity and clarity of their message pierced the fog of the Vietnam War, drugs, the environment, and politics. “Love is all you need” not only made sense, it gave us something to work toward.
Collectively the Beatles offered hope. But it was John Lennon who offered inspiration.
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