This post marks two huge milestones . . . unlike anything seen before in our lifetime.
The first, which is sure to rock the world o’blogging, is that this is my 250th blog post.
Please hold your applause.
The second milestone is that 50 years ago today, The Beatles invaded the United States. No, silly, not a swarm of locusts, but those lovable mop-heads, John, Paul, George, and Ringo. They made their American debut on The Ed Sullivan show and once again the world was rocked. Not by one of my stellar blog posts, but by Beatlemania.
Coincidence? I think not. Cue the music from the Twilight Zone.
How could it be a coincidence that The Beatles’ most devoted fan hit 250 posts on such a momentous occasion?
Just so you know exactly how old I am, I was five-years-old 50 years ago when The Beatles sang “All my Loving” on Mr. Sullivan’s television show. (I’ll wait while you do the math.)
Well, it is rumored that they sang. No one really knows for sure if they belted out a tune or not, because screaming teenage girls drowned out every other sound with their histrionics. Old Eddy boy was screaming as well, and had to be revived with smelling salts.
Back to me as an adorable kindergartener . . .
My beloved Uncle Mitchell came to our house for a visit on the wake of The Beatles’ long-hair, guitar-playing, blasphemous debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. Well, that review of The Beatles’ debut, of course, was according to my father. After watching their performance on our black and white television, my Dad muttered under his breath, “What is this world coming to?”
Oh, Dad. If you only knew what was in store for us in terms of radical rock stars. Think, Lady Gaga wearing a meat dress and Miley Cyrus twerking.
Back to me as an adorable kindergartener and Uncle Mitchell’s visit . . .
Uncle Mitchell arrived wearing Beatle boots and I thought it was the coolest thing ever.
You have to admit it was pretty cool.
For those of us of a certain age (old), there is no need for a definition of Beatle boots. To humor those of a more tender age, The Beatles wore ankle-high boots with a side zipper, bit of a heel, and a pointed toe. In the 1960s, they were considered avant-garde and edgy. By today’s standards, they were about as tame as milquetoast.
Uncle Mitchell passed away at age 93 in October. We were braced for it, but it was still a blow. His sense of humor, story-telling timing, and sharp wit was enchanting and wacky. He found joy in every moment, loved life, and it showed. It was contagious. If I could have just half of positive energy he exuded, I would consider myself a lucky girl. But in reality, where I feel most lucky is that he was a rich and colorful part of my life.
My uncle had a decades-long career on Broadway as an actor, director, playwright, and stage manager. He worked with some of the finest in the theater . . . Ian McKellen, Woody Allen, Tom Stoppard, Tony Randall, Maggie Smith, Al Pacino, and Tennessee Williams, to name only a few. In his words, Uncle Mitchell was “born to theater, drama, and performing.
That explains the Beatle boots.
To give you an idea of the kind of person he was, let me tell you a story. Uncle Mitchell never met a stranger. While he was at our house a few years ago, he called his sister and brother-in-law (my parents) to tell them to be sure to watch the Kennedy Center Honors on television. When he realized he misdialed and got a wrong number, he said to the person who answered the phone, “Let me tell you why I was calling my sister. You MUST watch the Kennedy Center Honors on television tonight. The show is supposed to be fantastic!”
He had 10-minute conversation with a wrong number. So like Uncle Mitchell.
So, in addition to this post being a tribute to my 250 posts of utter
brilliance blather, and a salute to the band that changed the world of music, it is an overdue homage to my uncle.
To borrow a line from the novel The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy, “The only word for goodness is goodness, and it is not enough.” Uncle Mitchell was the coolest guy ever and life was his stage.
Bravo, Uncle Mitchell. Encore. You too, Beatles.
Not you, Robin. You should go sit down.