JohnPaulGeorge&Ringo

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JohnPaulGeorge&Ringo

In response to the Daily Post prompt Teen Age Idol.

I succumbed to teen-age idolatry once in my life—my sixth grade year, 1963-64.

A classmate asked me if I ever listened to the radio. Incredulous, I replied, “I watch television.” The friend moved on and spoke to someone else. That was my first clue that I was missing something big.

Apparently, everyone else in my New Jersey town spent their after-school hours listening to WABC, an AM radio station out of New York City. Deejays Dan Ingram, Harry Harrison, and “Cousin Brucie” Morrow played the cutting edge rock ‘n’ roll that defined my generation.

After hearing snippets of songs in my dad’s car, I requested a radio of my own so that I could listen in my bedroom. (My mother controlled the only other radio, in the kitchen—and it was perpetually tuned to WOR.) For Christmas, I received a black and white plastic beauty that sat on my nightstand until my brother inherited it when I left for college.

Meet the Beatles

One of my classmates had a “fair” at her house. (I can’t remember the details. I think she raised money for the hospital.) One of the attractions provided for twenty-five cents was to go into the garage where a record player was set up and listen to two tracks from the newly released album Meet the Beatles. I chose “I Want to Hold you Hand” and “I Saw Her Standing There.”

An excellent artist in my class drew portraits of the Beatle of your choice for fifty cents. I commissioned a likeness of George Harrison. It graced my wall along with photos cut from Life and other assorted magazines until my dad, fed up with my decorating scheme, tore them down.

But my Beatlemania really manifested itself with Beatles trading cards. Yes. Topps, the bubble gum manufacturer that brought us baseball cards, cashed in on the lovable Liverpudlians with pictures that we all collected. We drove our teachers crazy as we perused them and negotiated trades (as my children did with Garbage Pail Kids and my students did with Pokemon cards). I managed to amass a fair quantity of them and I guarded them jealously. (My Precious.)

Beatles 2Beatles 1Beatles 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking at these photographs makes me incredibly nostalgic. I had many of the same cards. I wonder what happened to mine. (In all probability, I probably gave them to my brother when I got tired of them. I wonder if he still has them. I know he still has the Beatles records I gave him. Hmmm. I might have been a better sister than I thought.)

I found these images on Etsy.com. At the time I wrote this article, all of these cards were still available for purchase. Check out TheCopperDaisy, OldChurchStore, and DouglasJamesDesigns.

 

 

6 responses »

  1. I loved this! I too decorated my bedroom but with Annette photos, etc. and listened to the radio. My passion for the Mickey Mouse club was unending and my conservative Christian parents let me be free in my love of rock ‘n roll when other parents did not, I’m so thankful for that. I was not a true Beatles fan, did I spell it right? but John and I had all their albums. (I’m older than you.) Wow surely wish you had those cards like John and I wish we had our comic books. You are a wonderful writer! Betty

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Betty. I do remember coming home from elementary school and watching the Mickey Mouse Club. Who’s the leader of the band that’s made for you and me?

      Like

  2. Hi, Andrea! Well, you are right-I do still have all The Beatles LPs and 45’s that you gave me. Now, as for those bubblegum cards, I haven’t seen them in a very long time, but I suspect that they may be tucked away in a drawer or a closet somewhere. I wouldn’t know where to look first, though!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Most likely, assuming they are where I think they might be, they are still in storage. I’ve got to work a little harder at getting that unit emptied!

      Like

  3. Pingback: Ideal…by Andrea R Huelsenbeck | Doing Life Together

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