12:01 AM, Wednesday, December 9th, 2015:
John Lennon was born on October 9th, 1940. I was born on October 9th, 1975. Remarkably, John's son Sean was also born on October 9th, 1975. I've felt a connection to their stories my entire life and I always knew that later this morning, when both Sean and I wake up, we'd share a bit of surreality: we're now older than John ever was. I can only imagine what that must feel like for Sean who has lived in such a shadow his whole life... he's now been on this earth longer than his father.
What is even more intense to process is when you share a birthday with someone you share more than that date: your seasons are the same as theirs. Fall means something different when you share a birthday in that season. Summer is put into a specific category relative to your age. I don't know if this is true for other people with an October birthday, but I know that it kicks off the end of the year for me. Thanksgiving, Christmas... they're all approached with my newly minted age still on my mind. The timing in the year gives you the time to process and then BOOM: New year, new age... the cycle starts. I've always loved that about my birthdate.
It's with that thought that John Lennon's death particularly struck a chord with me, even as a child. I remember reading about his hope for his 40s and the 1980s in particular. Being born on a round number meant every decade was the next decade of his life as well. He wrote about it, talked about it... lived it nearly all of 1980. It's an incredibly inspirational year after quite a reflective period where he was all things "domestic" while raising Sean. He turned 40, was excited for the future and was then killed 2 months later.
Sean was 5. He too felt the seasons pass the same way his father did. Down to the very day and age. He had to have been aware of why this year in particular would mean so much. He turned 40 as I did in October... and now he is here. Looking forward to a decade his father never had. He can no longer share milestones with his father who isn't there. Hell, not even milestones, everything he may have shared with him, from aches and pains to relationships to even mannerisms... he could compare that to his father, at his age 35 years previous. Today is the first day he can no longer do that. It's unchartered territory.
For me, I found that I've followed in the footsteps of a lot of neurotic artist types that create all sorts of stuff and eventually give it all up for kids/family... then find themselves right back in the creative realm no matter what. Here I was in my late 30s "nesting" for my family to provide a nice home for my kids when suddenly I look up and I just built a TV show. I took this year to pay off a rather impressive part of the "set" that is my backyard (the time machine) and now I hit 40 and look forward to this next decade and specifically this next year with all the hope in the world. The Hats & Minigolf interview show is easily my best and most mainstream idea and I'm in a great place financially and have enough contacts to make it happen. I'm not on the scale of the motherfucking Beatles and the members within, but I've learned that those scales are out of your hands. You create because that's what you do... how it's received and what hooks onto the psyche of popular culture is not up to you. With Hats & Minigolf, I feel I got lucky: something I fount interesting and intriguing, actually is to the mainstream public. I would've done it no matter what...
...but it's this part of John Lennon's life that always resonated with me. He was a bastard in his 20s, he seemed to figure that out in the first 5 years of his 30s and then took time off to have a child without being a bastard. Then started writing again and was ready to jump back on that merry-go-round... when it vanished. My mind/heart/soul is in the exact same headspace. I've spent the last 5 years building foundations to make and am seeing those through. Thankfully, I'm alive to do that.
An hour has passed as I've gone through some old songs from the journey to see which ones were inspired by Lennon or even Lennon songs. There's quite a few obviously, but one always sticks out. Quality was shit on YouTube so I thought I'd fix it up a bit, add the lyrics to the video and re-release it 8 years later nearly to the day...
Man, you know what's spooky? Sounds like Weiland who just died on the 3rd. That chord progression now seems COMPLETELY lifted from a Stone Temple Pilots song. I assure you that was unintentional. It was actually an accident where I fucked up the tuning on one of my strings and it made an interesting sound so I just wrote a song with it. Fuck if I can ever figure that mistake out again.
Anyway, I mention him for one reason: dying young is always tragic. I'm tired of people acting like it's less tragic because Scott was an addict. John was an addict too, he just got through it. Most artists have demons and most get through them... many do not. The shitty comments I see online when someone overdoses or outright commits suicide are ridiculous. And remember, John was a bastard to Julian as a father during Beatlemania when he was fucking everything that moved and taking every drug he could find. The beauty of the story of John Lennon is how he got through it all and ended up being a great father (to Sean) and found himself again as he turned 40.
Both tragic, one had better timing. And so it goes...
It's the first day of the rest of our lives, Sean, and one day we'll meet up and compare life notes.