Wednesday, April 28, 2010

THE BEATLES...YET AGAIN

When I was in L.A., I saw my old friend—and fellow Beatles fanatic—Mitchell Rose, who asked me a profound and life-altering question:  "What is your least favorite Beatles song?"  (We're talking original compositions here, not cover versions.)  Being a dutiful Beatloid, I combed through the band's library and here's what I came up with (keeping in mind that there's always something of value in a Beatles song.  "Least favorite" in this case means all—well, most—of these are still favorites, just not up to the rest of the catalogue):

If we can include tracks from The Beatles Anthology, then the hands-down winners are:
"What’s the New Mary Jane" (which I actually think is a fun song, it's just a somewhat annoying, self-indulgent recording)
"If You’ve Got Trouble" (critic Ian MacDonald called this an "unmitigated disaster."  I wouldn't go that far, but it's certainly a major stumble)

If we're sticking to canon, then the winners are:
"Maxwell’s Silver Hammer" (it's annoying and you can't stop humming it, which only makes it worse)
"For You Blue" (not bad, just empty calories.  That said, the slide guitar and piano are terrific)
"You Like Me Too Much" (more empty calories)
"Your Mother Should Know" (it's like McCartney came up with one fun verse and then didn't bother to write the rest)
"I Want to Tell You" (more empty calories, but a good arrangement and great playing)
"She’s Leaving Home" (might be #1 on this list because it's the only Beatles track that can be called pretentious)
"Lovely Rita" (production and playing are, again, terrific, but the song is a throwaway.  That can be said about many, perhaps most, of the Pepper tracks.  With the exception of "A Day in the Life" and a few others, it's the spirit of that album that made it great, not the individual songs)
"Only A Northern Song" (aural wallpaper)
"Hold Me Tight" (second weakest of the early Lennon-McCartney compositions)
"Baby's In Black" (weakest of the early L-M songs)

If I had to trim the list to just five, it would be:
"You Like Me Too Much"
"Your Mother Should Know"
"She’s Leaving Home"
"Only A Northern Song"
"Baby's In Black"

And let's add two more categories:

Most overrated Beatles songs
(doesn't mean they're bad songs—just that the praise they've received is far in excess of their worth)
"Michele" (the hands-down winner in this category)
"Yesterday" (tender and lovely, yes, but when I want to hear a McCartney ballad with a perfect blend of words and melody, I'll choose "Blackbird" over this every time)  
"Something" (a terrific song, but nowhere near as good as people have made it out to be.  "Here Comes The Sun," on the other hand, can never be praised enough)

Most underrated Beatles songs:
"Hey Bulldog"
"Cry Baby Cry"
"I've Got A Feeling"

Mitchell posted this question on his Facebook page and stirred up a hornet's nest of rock and roll controversy.  Let's see if we can do the same here.  Fellow Beatloids, your opinions are not just requested, but demanded.

© copyright 2010 J.M. DeMatteis

Saturday, April 24, 2010

AND BOY ARE MY ARMS TIRED


Got back from California a few days ago.  Wizard's Anaheim Comic Con—which was kind enough to fly me out and put me up—was odd, but enjoyable.  Odd because it was more of a  celebrity autograph show than a comic book convention.  A walk up and down the aisles was a continual childhood flashback:  ”Look!  There’s Batman!”  “There’s Lt. Uhura!”  “There’s the guy from Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea!”  “There’s...Mickey Rooney?!”  (Don’t get me wrong, Rooney’s a terrific actor—in his Andy Hardy days he was the biggest movie star in the world and, over the years, he’s won two Academy Awards and been nominated for four more—but this was primarily a fantasy and science-fiction crowd, many of whom, I suspect, didn’t know who he was.)   

The only actor I actually spoke to was the great Ed Asner who, I was reminded, did the voice of Granny Goodness in one of my Justice League Unlimited episodes.  We had a brief conversation about his animation work and the man was delightful.  And then there was the ever-amazing William Shatner, whose hour-long Q & A was one of the highlights of the weekend:  hugely entertaining, laugh-out-loud funny and supremely Shatnerian.  If you don’t believe me, have a look at this.  

Despite the emphasis on the stars of my wayward youth, I had plenty of opportunities to chat with folks who read, and appreciate, my work.  A variety of intelligent, heartfelt and genuine people—all of whom were a pleasure to talk to.  (I especially enjoyed discussing comics and spirituality with Ken Fries—a follower of this blog—who drove four hours from Las Vegas to the show.)  As I’ve said many times before, I spend a good part of my time alone in a room playing with my imaginary friends.  I sometimes forget that there are actual live human beings out there and it does my heart good to meet them.  (Creation Point, of course, serves the same function, which is why I appreciate every comment posted here.)  So to all of you who came by:  profound thanks.  It meant the world to me.

Writer-artist-editor
—and all-around swell guy—Shannon Denton had the table just across from me.  Director Marc Rosenbush—who’s working hard to translate my old Veritgo series, Blood: a tale, into a feature film—swung by to say hello, as did my buddy (and animation writer supreme) Stan Berkowitz, and my stellar managers, Kevin Cleary and Josh Morris.  (Thanks again for dinner, guys.)  I also did a filmed interview for a documentary on the history of Marvel’s Daredevil that turned out to be both memory-taxing (it’s been over a decade since I wrote the character) and great fun.

Since I was in Anaheim—and the convention didn’t open till three o’clock Friday afternoon—I took the opportunity to spend a day at Disneyland.  You can’t beat the Peter Pan or Pinocchio rides (I hit the latter twice), walking through the archway of the Sleeping Beauty Castle while “When You Wish Upon A Star” plays still brings tears to my eyes (yes, I’m that much of a sap), and I could spend hours gazing at that statue of Walt and Mickey, holding hands and looking off into an as-yet-realized future.  That said, I soon realized that, without my family along to share the experience, Disneyland was a little empty, a little sad.  Next time, I’m bringing the whole clan with me.

After Anaheim, I spent a few days in LA, where I stayed with some treasured friends I hadn’t seen in far too long, met with Michael Jelenic and James Tucker of Batman: The Brave and the Bold (we had a terrific time working out the details of my next episode which, I’m happy to report, is another Justice League International story.  It’s a genuine pleasure to sit in a room with people as talented as Michael and James and create a story from the ground up), shared an exceptional Persian meal with the aforementioned Mr. Berkowitz and Ben 10 producer Dwayne McDuffie (who generously picked up the check) and had a nice visit with producer—and Abadazad fan—Don Murphy

But now—home again.  Some time to reintegrate my consciousness and then back to work on, among other things,
Booster Gold, the next two chapters of my Kraven-Kaine saga for Amazing Spider-Man, and an episode of Brave and the Bold that features everybody's favorite Green Lantern, Hal Jordan. 

It’s good to be back—I’m a homebody at heart, which is one of the reasons I chose this somewhat sequestered life—but it was certainly a trip worth taking.

© copyright 2010 J.M. DeMatteis

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

CALIFORNIA BOUND


Before I fly out to California for the Anaheim Comic Con (and some L.A. business and recreation afterwards), I thought I'd share an interview I just did with iFanboy.com.  It's all about my upcoming Kaine-Kraven arc in Amazing Spider-Man and my reunion with the lovely and talented Keith Giffen on Booster Gold.  Enjoy! 

I'll check back in late next week with a post-Anaheim report.  (And if you're coming to the convention, please stop by my table and say hello.)

Saturday, April 10, 2010

CLONING AROUND

The other day I received a copy of Marvel’s new collection, Spider-Man:  the Complete Clone Saga Epic, Book 1 (an ungainly, but necessary, title).  The Clone Saga, as many of you Spider-fans know, ran through the the Spider-Man family of comic books in the mid-nineties and has gone on to become, perhaps, the single most controversial story line in Peter Parker’s history.  We knew it would be.  From the moment then-Web of Spider-Man writer Terry Kavanagh tossed the idea out on the table at one of our regular Spider-conferences, we knew we had a keg of dynamite on our hands.  But what an exciting keg it was.  At least I thought so.  I had just taken over the writing of Amazing Spider-Man—and the idea that the guy we thought was Spidey was a clone while the real Spider-Man had been out wandering the world for five years thinking he was a fake seemed like just the thing we needed to shake the Spiderverse to its foundations.  Most of the writers, artists and editors who joined in that retreat agreed. 

What was most exciting was that this wasn’t some bogus Big Event.  This was going to be The Real Thing.  Good-bye Peter and Mary Jane, hello Ben Reilly (the perfect name, courtesy of my dear friend Danny Fingeroth, who was the Spider-Man group editor at the time).  As we knocked the idea around, we realized that what we had on our hands was a powerful super-heroic drama with emotion, psychology, action and—perhaps most important—a coherent beginning, middle and end.  It was our intention to bring Ben back, mess with the readers’ minds for six or eight months, and then, when the smoke cleared, return him to his full glory as Spider-Man, sending Peter, Mary Jane and their new baby off into the happy ending we thought they deserved.

But when Danny took the premise to then-editor-in-chief Tom DeFalco, Tom instantly nixed it.  He even came to the second day of the conference to explain to us why the story would never be done.  We all listened to Tom’s objections, and then told him (loudly, I’m sure) why the story had to be done.  We must have been very convincing because, by the time the conference was over, Tom hadn’t only agreed to let us go ahead with the storyline, he’d signed on as the new writer of Spectacular Spider-Man.

We began to meet every couple of weeks in a Marvel conference room—me, Tom, Danny, Terry, Howard Mackie, Eric Fein, Mark Bernardo, Mark Powers and, eventually, Todd Dezago—to shape the story...focus it...push it forward.  (One thing we didn’t want was for it to drag on till the end of time.  We wanted to get in, tell the tale, and get out as quickly as possible.)  There were no big egos at those meetings, no one trying to hog the glory or force his point of view down anyone’s throat.  Just a group of extremely enthusiastic creators—all of whom genuinely liked each other—laughing and shouting and banging on the table while shoveling down far too much pizza and Chinese food.  I don’t know if I’ve ever had more fun in my professional life.  (It was, in its way, our own little Golden Age, one I look back on with immense fondness and gratitude.)

But, slowly, things began to unravel—beginning with the fact that the entire industry, which had been going through a boom-time, was suddenly starting to go bust.  Sales at Marvel started falling across the board.  (Although—initially, at least—the Clone Saga gave the Spider-books a significant sales boost.) Marvel replaced DeFalco with not one but five editors-in-chief (an idea that didn’t last very long)—and they were all under tremendous pressure from their superiors to turn things around.  Another old friend and collaborator, Bob Budiansky, who became the Spider-Man EIC, was expected to treat the Spider books as if they were a comic book line in and of themselves.  The atmosphere, through no fault of Bob's, became more tense.  Add to this the fact that the marketing department—which was beginning to wrest control from editorial—was asking us to elongate the story and you can understand why the air was swiftly leaking from the Spider-balloon. 

I also think that we, as writers, occasionally lost our grip on the story.  We did some fantastic work, but we also had some serious stumbles.  (The most obvious example being the “Maximum Clonage” story.  One of my least favorite pieces of the Clone Saga puzzle.)  The biggest problem, on a purely creative level, was the fact that after our regular meetings, where we'd map out the story in great detail, we'd each go off to write our individual chapter of it.  There was no controlling voice.  No consistent tone.  And I found writing Chapter Two of a larger story incredibly frustrating.  It limited spontaneity, which, for me, is the best part of the journey.  I love to let the characters rear up and surprise me.  When you're working your little territory in the middle of a larger story...and the other guy may have already written the chapter after yours...there's not a lot of room for that.  (I remember ending one story with the revelation that the female Doctor Octopus was Seward Trainer's daughter...it just kind of came as I wrote the final pages.  Problem was, Tom D had already written the next chapter and, if I'm remembering correctly, had to go back in and change his chapter to reflect my new idea.  Tom did it—he's a class act, a total pro—but I'm sure he wasn't thrilled about it.)  All that said, I was still having a reasonably good time—especially when it came to Ben Reilly.

I write characters from the inside out. It's their psychological and spiritual make-up that interests me more than anything.  The minute I stepped inside Ben's head, it was clear that he was a very different character than Peter.  A very different man.  They had, at their core, the same values, the same inherent decency; but Ben's life experience had changed him drastically.  He was tougher, I think; far more troubled.  Quicker to anger.  Less respectful of the law.  His heart had been wounded so much that he had a hard shell around it.  Yet, beneath that shell, aspects of the Peter Parker we knew and loved remained.  That was the fun of Ben Reilly: he was Peter Parker and, at the same time he wasn't.  Working on The Lost Years (which, along with some Reilly back-up stories I wrote around the same time, kicks off the new collection) was, for me, the highlight of the Clone Saga.  Digging deeper into Ben's past, deepening the character of Kaine, working with the great John Romita, Jr.:  what a wonderful experience.  To be perfectly honest, I think Ben was, in many ways, a better character than Peter.  Certainly more layered and interesting.  And that's coming from a guy who thinks that Peter Parker is one of the most layered and interesting characters in the history of comics.

Somewhere in the middle of the Clone Saga, I decided to put on my parachute and bail out.  As noted, things had changed drastically at Marvel and in the Spider-Man office.  Everyone was doing his or her very best on the books, but it just wasn't as much fun.  But the main reason I left (as I recall, anyway) was that I was sick of writing that damn middle chapter.  I've always been happier off in my own corner, writing stories that are uniquely mine.  That's one of the reasons I loved working on The Lost Years.  I was able to do exactly what I wanted with that story.  If I could have written a monthly Ben Reilly book, exploring his five missing years, I'd probably still be doing it.  (I’ve been lucky enough, in recent months, to return to both Ben and Kaine.  In fact, I’m writing a story right now, set in the months before Kraven’s Last Hunt, that pits Kaine against Sergei Kravinov—and I’m having a ball.)

The Clone Saga went on for quite a while after my departure, and—for reasons that were beyond the control of the writers and artists working on the books—the story seemed to change direction every few months.  I was disappointed by the ending that finally saw print, but, of course, I’m biased:  I still think our original ending should have been the ending:  Ben becomes Spider-Man.  Peter, MJ and the baby go off together.  One of the important points we were trying to make was that wearing tights and punching people isn't the only way—or the best way—to prove that "with great power comes great responsibility."  Raising a child with intelligence, compassion and love is the perhaps the greatest responsibility there is.  I'm sorry we lost that.  It would have been a powerful statement to come from the flagship character of the Marvel Universe.  "Yes, folks, super hero adventures are great fun...but, in the real world, it's compassion and human decency that counts."

Still, I remain convinced that—warts and all (and, let’s be honest, some of those warts were pretty darn big)—the Clone Saga was just what the 90’s Spider-books needed—which is why I’m delighted that Marvel is collecting the whole messy epic in this new series of trade paperbacks (the one sitting here on my desk runs over four hundred pages.  You’ll certainly be getting your money’s worth).  The little bombshell that Terry Kavanaugh threw on the table at that long-ago editorial retreat allowed me to tell some of the meatiest, most satisfying Spider-stories of my career.  Stories I’m very proud of.  The Lost Years—and the death of Aunt May in Amazing Spider-Man #400 (which, I hope, will be in the second volume)—foremost among them.

And those writers meetings?  I’m telling you:  You should’ve been there.

© copyright 2010 J.M. DeMatteis

Friday, April 9, 2010

ROSELAND


My old friend Mitchell Rose is a former dancer and choreographer—the New York Times called him "the dance world's Woody Allen"—who, in recent years, has carved out a wonderful career as an award-winning filmmaker.  Mitch has posted two new short films on his website—"A World Without Numbers" and "Advance"—and you should watch them, immediately, because they're pretty damn brilliant.  As is Mitchell.  And then, when you're done, you should watch the other amazing films at MitchellRose.com.   

Monday, April 5, 2010

MEETING LENNON, PART ONE

Here, at long last, is the tale of my two historic (well, historic to me) meetings with my one true rock and roll hero, John Winston Ono Lennon.  I can’t swear that I’ve got all the details right—memory’s a tricky thing, at best—but the essence of the story is absolutely true.

***


In January of 1975, I was twenty-one years old, attending Brooklyn College (drifting through Brooklyn College is more like it; academics were never my strong suit), playing music, writing songs, dreaming of rock and roll glory—and, simultaneously, an equally-glorious writing career.  I’d been in and out of bands for years, partnered with some terrific players, but among our crowd of Brooklyn musicians, there was no one better than Jon Cobert.  Jonny was an extraordinary piano player—but he was also the kind of intuitive genius who could pick up just about any instrument and make memorable music.  I may not have been sure about my own rock and roll future, but I knew, we all knew, Jonny was headed for great things.  As noted, I was writing songs on my own—had been since I was fourteen or fifteen—but Jonny and I often wrote together, as well.  I crafted the lyrics—a few of them quite sublime, many of them truly atrocious (and, happily, long forgotten)—and Jon, with far more consistency, would provide the superb musical bedrock.  (Three of the songs we wrote together—"April Rainbow," "I Can Fly" and "Don't Wanna Live in Yesterday"—appeared on Jonny’s recent CD, Here’s Your Canoe, and you can stream them here.)  

In those ancient days, Jon was in a band that, at various times, was called Dog Soldier, Community Apple and, the name that seemed to stick, BOMF (I’d tell you what the letters stood for, but I am a children’s book author, after all).  BOMF was managed by a man named Roy Cicala, who ran one of one of Manhattan’s premier recording studios, Record Planet, East.  Roy was also a skilled engineer—one of the best in the business—who’d worked with John Lennon on Imagine, Some Time in New York City, Mind Games, Walls and Bridges and Rock and Roll.  Not surprising that RPE was Lennon’s studio of choice in New York or that BOMF’s destiny and Lennon’s became temporarily intertwined.  The band added hand claps and vocals to some Walls and Bridges tracks, appeared in now-classic videos for “Slippin’ and Slidin’” and “Stand By Me” (more about that in Part Two) and backed Lennon up for his last major television appearance—a very odd affair called “A Salute To Sir Lew Grade”—wearing outer space jumpsuits and (in a nod to what Lennon perceived as Sir Lew’s duplicitous nature) two faces.  Lennon also provided lyrics for a song that BOMF recorded called “Incantation.”  (The song was never released, but I remember it as a throbbing, voodoo-inspired rocker, with lyrics in the “Come Together” vein.)

That night in January of ‘75—if I’m remembering correctly, it was a Tuesday or Wednesday, I know for sure it was a weeknight—my old friend (and brilliant drummer) Cliff Hochberg and I were bored and, looking for something to do, drove into the City—if you lived in Brooklyn, you never referred to it as Manhattan, it was just the City—to hang out at the Record Plant with Jonny.  (Something we did regularly because...well, wouldn’t you?)  There was nothing of any major (or even minor) import going on that night:  we were just drifting from the band’s rehearsal room to a little songwriting studio that had been set up for Jonny.  At one point, I was sitting alone in the hall when I saw Roy Cicala walk by.  A moment later, Cliff appeared, with an excited expression on his face.  “Do you know who’s here?” he asked.  “Yeah,” I replied, not sure why Roy’s appearance had Cliff so elated, “Mr. C.”  “No,” Cliff said; and then, after a suitably dramatic pause (hey, even if he didn’t pause, he should have), he added: “Mr. L.” 

Cue the thunder and lightning.  Cue the orchestra.  Cue the earth shaking beneath our feet.  John Lennon was in the building.  John Lennon:  the man whose music and wisdom, anger, wit, lunacy and honesty had fascinated and inspired me since the Beatles invaded America when I was ten years old. 

A moment later, Jonny appeared.  “Hey,” he said, casually (he, of course, knew there was nothing casual about it), “you guys wanna meet John?”  By the time he’d finished that sentence, Cliff and I were racing down the hall ahead of him, like two demented roadrunners.

Lennon was in Cicala’s office and that’s where we (along with several of the BOMF boys) were headed.  When we stepped into Roy’s outer office, we heard a distinctive nasal voice—a unique mixture of Liverpool and New York—from inside.  It was a voice I’d been hearing for most of my life, but always on television, on the radio, on the record player.  But now that voice—and the source of that voice—was on the other side of the wall.  I’m sure my cheeks drained of color:  it's a miracle the top of my head didn’t blow right off.  Cliff and I exchanged looks of wonder—he was as much a Beatles fanatic as I was and (almost) as big a Lennon fan—and then we filed into the main office.

Roy was there, along with his then-wife, Lori Burton.  May Pang—John’s girlfriend (this was during the infamous “Lost Weekend,” when John and Yoko were separated)—was, too.  And Lennon was there—right there—looking...well, real.  The only time I’d ever seen him in person was in 1972, at the Madison Square Garden “One to One’ concert—and I was way up in the cheap seats, under the influence of...well, that doesn’t matter.  But this wasn’t some distant figure on a stage or a flickering image on the television.  This was an actual human being—looking somehow more fragile, thinner, and a shorter than I’d imagined.   And yet, somehow, larger, too:  every inch the rock legend; wearing a long black coat, a white scarf tossed across his shoulder, a bottle of Kalua in his hand, all topped—or perhaps bottomed—by cowboy boots with spurs (yes, spurs).  He’d been out to dinner with Pang and afterwards they’d haunted some record stores, where Lennon had purchased a pile of 45s that he’d stacked up on Roy’s turntable.   “Disco,” Lennon said, indicating the new and unfamiliar sounds coming from the speakers.  “Gonna be the next big thing.  It’s all you’re gonna hear for the next ten years.”  None of us had ever heard the word disco, let alone the music, but this was John Lennon, after all, so we took it as gospel (good thing.  Turned out he was right).  There was some more chit-chat and the bottle of Kalua was passed around (I wasn’t a drinker, so I can’t comment on the quality) and then, soon after, it became clear that Roy, John and their partners wanted to be alone.  The audience with the Pope of Rock was over.  As we all filed out of the office (well, the other guys filed out, I’m pretty sure Cliff and I floated, five feet off the ground), someone inside put on John’s exquisite Walls and Bridges track “Number Nine Dream,” which had just been released as a single.  “No, no,” we heard an agitated Lennon bark, and it was very clear that he meant it, “get it off, get it off.”  (So much for the Great Lennon Ego). 



We regrouped back in BOMF’s rehearsal room, Cliff and I sharing our amazement, shock and wonder at what we’d just stumbled into; Jonny delighted by our jaw-dropped stupefaction.  (And  let’s face it, despite the fact that the BOMF boys already knew Lennon, each new encounter was something special for them.)  I don’t think we’d been in the room for more than ten minutes when a figure appeared in the doorway, holding a guitar:  Lennon.  He wanted to play some of this new disco music that had so captured him and wondered if the guys were up for it.  Needless to say they were.  There was only one problem:  Lennon didn’t have a guitar pick.  Cliff quickly offered up his Brooklyn College ID card.  It was a clumsy substitute, but Lennon didn’t seem to mind.

So there I was, on a random weeknight, sitting on the floor of this small rehearsal room in the middle of New York City, while—maybe three or four feet away from me—John Lennon was playing guitar, urging the band on, jamming away.  It was completely surreal.  I mean, what were the odds of this happening?  Cliff and I exchanged occasional looks of astonishment—but not for too long, because we didn’t want to take our eyes off the magician in front of us, perhaps for fear that, if we looked away too long, he’d just disappear in a puff of smoke.  (Five years later, he did.)

BOMF's drummer was having a little trouble getting the distinctive disco beat down—not surprising, since it was a very specific, and, at the time, very new, rhythm—and Cliff, I later found out, had to restrain himself from leaping up, knocking the guy to the floor and taking over.  (And I’m sure Cliffy would have nailed that beat instantly, too.)  I, meanwhile, was watching Lennon’s hands fly across the guitar neck, studying his every move (there was a rhythmic effect he got by muting the strings and using the pick percussively:  I’ve been doing the same trick ever since).

I don’t know how long this off-the-cuff, extraordinarily private concert went on—time, as you may suspect, had taken on a very distorted, other-dimensional quality—it might have been fifteen minutes, it might have been forty-five; but, eventually, Lennon satisfied his disco-craving and was done.  That’s when he turned to me, offering Cliff’s ID badge.  “Here’s your credit card,” he said, assuming I was the guy who’d given it to him.

You might think this was my opportunity to be witty, profound or, at the very least, gushingly fannish.  It was certainly a chance to say something to this man whose life and work had meant so much to me for so long.

Didn’t happen.

In the movie version of Woody Allen’s Broadway play, Play It Again, Sam, there’s a scene where Woody’s character, Allan Felix, is on his first post-divorce blind date.  Felix is a barely-functional, sputtering, jittery nervous wreck, a walking disaster, and, when he’s introduced to his date, the only thing he can do is wave like a moron and emit a guttural caveman grunt:  “Nugh!”  That’s pretty much what I choked out at Lennon—”Nugh!”—as, bug-eyed, I pointed to Cliff, clumsily indicating that it was his “credit card” and not mine.  Lennon returned the ID badge, then quickly vanished back into the land of myth and Kalua.

And that, in and of itself, would have been as memorable, and embarrassing, an encounter as I could have ever asked for.  But this was just a set-up for the second, even more memorable and far-more embarrassing, encounter that would come, a few months later, on a sunny afternoon in March when I got to spend a day watching Lennon and BOMF film this:



And here’s hoping it doesn’t take me as long to write “Meeting Lennon, Part Two” as it’s taken me to write this.

© copyright 2010 J.M. DeMatteis