I used to say my life would be complete if I could go to a Beatles concert, knowing that this was impossible. Then the Facebook fan page informed me that Paul McCartney would be ending his world tour in Cincinnati, Ohio. Well, that’s driving distance, if not particularly close, so I could not resist.
So last night, after a five hour drive, I put in the pink earplugs, donned what I considered reasonably hippie clothes, and made my way to The Great American Ball Park for what I supposed was the closest I could get to my unachievable dream.
How, at his age, he can still sing so well, I don’t know, but his voice was nearly identical to that which poured into my ears from my headphones every day.
Yes! He did sing Beatles songs as well as his own; and then there were the lights, and the fireworks, and…
Really fat people willing to waste $70 on beer for one evening (I was surprised that the rather overweight man in front of me was still conscious by the second encore). I– was disappointed with the audience a bit. Perhaps I was expecting Tom Wolfe’s “Berkley Intellectuals” or others of the magical sort mentioned in The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Instead, the greatest accomplishment I witnessed the middle-aged patrons perform was stuffing themselves into the stadium seats, and even that with some difficulty.
But if I didn’t look too much at my immediate surroundings, the experience was still great. It was my first time at a concert so huge, and the camera flashes from all around the stadium did indeed remind me of the scene (in the same wonderful book), in which Wolfe described the atmosphere of a Beatles concert. And, of course, I GOT TO HEAR ONE OF THE BEATLES PLAY! Did I take pictures? YOU BET! (Well, I tried.)