This is what it means to me


This is for all the people who don’t understand why I would spend the money I’m willing to spend to see Paul.
Maybe you know about our current financial situation and you can’t imagine how I would think it’s okay to spend so much on concert tickets. Or maybe you don’t have any idea how much we do or don’t have in our bank account and you just plain don’t see the point in paying such a high price to see a concert — and then doing it more than once.
Honestly, now that I sit here at the keyboard, I don’t know if I even can explain it so you’ll understand. Someone asked me recently why I was spending the money and the best I could do was splutter, “But it may be my last chance!” There are lots of “last chances” in the music world, though, and probably most people still wouldn’t put forth so much cash to see them. And that’s one of the differences right there. It’s worth it to me. It matters. I missed John. I missed George. I’ll be damned if I’m going to miss Paul, as well. This may be my last shot at being there with Paul, in the very same room, hearing the songs coming from his lips, seeing the very hands that wrote those songs playing them on the piano.
It’s not just that it’s my last chance, though. Truth be told, even if Paul promised to do another tour, or five, or ten after this one I would still be trying to see him just as many times with just as good of seats.
I am so tempted here to take the easy way out and say “If I have to explain, you wouldn’t understand.” The funny thing is, that’s probably true. I’m not going to make anyone understand why this means so much to me, I think. But not being understood has never stopped me from talking before so I will make the attempt.
I am not just a fan of the Beatles. Fans of musical groups buy some or most of the artist’s albums. They know most of the songs but not much of the background of them. They’re happy if they can score tickets to a concert but they aren’t devastated if they can’t. They listen to lots of other artists. Their favorite may even change every so often, depending on who’s got the best album out at that particular moment. If that’s the kind of music fan you are, if you would get sick of listening to any group if you had to hear them too much, if you can’t recognize the singer’s voice in two notes of a song you have never even heard before, then you will not understand.
I live the Beatles. They are a part of me, part of who I am. I have people across the country, across the continent, across the globe, people whom I have never met in person and never will, who think of me immediately when they see something Beatles-related. That is how intertwined they are with my life and who I am as a person. When I hear one of the boys’ voices coming out of the speakers in a store or a restaurant, the recognition is instantaneous. The reaction in my brain is the same as if you were sitting in a restaurant and heard your mother’s or your best friend’s voice coming out of the ceiling. It makes me smile every time. If I’m sad, or bored, or stressed, or angry all it takes is a song or a few minutes of video footage and all is well again. The Beatles are my comfort item. If I have managed to go several days without watching them or listening to them, I start to miss them, as though they were actually here and have gone away.
That’s the best I can do right now. I don’t know how else to explain it. And I definitely can’t ask anyone to understand. All I can say is this is not “just a concert.” I’m not going because I think Paul “is cool and I like the Beatles, too.” Going to see Paul again means the world to me. It means more than any trip or any tangible thing I could buy. It means more than a hundred dollars or a thousand dollars. I have had a rough couple of years, here. The last time I saw Paul ranks in the top five best nights of my life and I have been praying ever since that he would come around again. There is no way I could not go see him. It would be completely unfathomable. Not going to see him was not an option, period. And I think that, after the crap time we’ve had lately, I deserve it. My children are not suffering for the money I’ve spent. I am not taking away food, housing, clothing, schooling, or even toys from them to make this possible.
Some might also question the wisdom of spending money to take a five-year-old to one of the concerts. Well, this child loves Paul like I do. She was only two years old when I went to pick her up from my in-laws’ house after returning from one of Paul’s concerts. Two years old, and when she saw me coming, wearing the concert t-shirt, she called out, “Paul!” I made a promise to myself, right there and then, that if Paul toured again Madalyn would come with me to one of the concerts. This might be my last shot, but it might be her only shot at seeing him. So we are going, come hell or high water. That is the one concert I don’t have tickets for yet but we will find a way. Even if she only retains the memory of one snippet of one song, that will be enough for me. It’s something I will remember for the rest of my life.
And that’s all I have to say.


About msmaryb

I'm a native Californian who lives in Oklahoma. I'm a full-time student, pursuing a Bachelors in Anthropology, following which I hope to attain a Masters in Archaeology. I have three kids, one husband, no pets, and a lot of friends - most of whom live inside my computer. I love to read, write, watch tv (shut up, we can't all be brain surgeons), shop, and travel. I'm trying to set foot in all 50 states before I die. I have 38, so far. I love the Beatles and Maroon 5, and if you think those two things are incongruous, well, they are. But that's me. When I love something, I love it 100%. I don't do anything halfway. I want to know everything there is to know, so I'm trying to cram as much into my brain as I can in the short amount of time I'm allotted in this dimension.

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