Friday, June 1, 2007

Where Were You When?

A little exercise I do in Speaking and Listening is called, "Where were you when?" In the exercise each person in the room is encouraged to talk about where they were when something significant happened in their lives. Prior to September 11, 2001, everyone talked about where they were when the Columbine shootings occured. Prior to that it was the Columbia shuttle disaster. For my generation, the Kennedy assasinations were the defining moments.

I can't recall where I was when Robert was shot. I know exactly where I was when I heard about John's death. I was in Mr. Gesheidle's woodshop, struggling my way through another day of my clumsy attempts to square a board with a hand plane. Our principal, Froggy MacNamara, announced over the loud speaker that we were all going to be dismissed, because the President had been assasinated.

I also recall where I was forty years ago today, when Sergeant Pepper brought the band to play.

Yes, unrepentant Hippies everywhere, today is the 40th annivesary of the record album that changed record albums forever. I don't think I heard it on its first release day, but I know I heard it shortly after that. My room mate that year, the spring of 1967, was John Greenwood, a crazy wild hippy kid who never surprised me - because nothing he ever did ever surprised me.

It probably wasn't until fall of 1967 that I heard it, but I'm sure I heard it first on John Greenwood's stereo. Or maybe it was on George Bailey's stereo. Forty years ago next fall I began my sophomore year in college, at Dear of Augustana (another Dear Old Swedish Lutheran Institution).

Forty years ago today. Just think of it. And what's become of us since?

And where were you when you first heard Sergeant Pepper's?

NPR did a very nice story on the appearance of the Record:

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