Memory Lane Meets Abbey Road


When the Beatles made their debut on the Ed Sullivan Show, I was a toddler. It would be a few years before I truly understood who and what the Beatles were, and how they impacted our lives musically. And, who could forget the Beatles cartoons, or lunch boxes or any other Beatlemania memorabilia.

I was about eight or nine years old when “The Long and Winding Road” and “Let It Be” made their way to number one on the charts. I absolutely fell in love with those two songs, and to this day, they are still my favorites.

As soon as I hear, “The Long and Winding Road,” my hands-down, absolute favorite Beatles tune of all time, I am instantly transported back to early summer and my dad’s gold Buick. He was so proud of himself, because he was, in his words, “hip,” with his eight-track tape player, white shoes and new Beatles music.

Maybe that is why I get misty every time I hear that ballad. Not only do the lyrics move me, but the music is beautiful. The moment I hear the first few chords, I am instantly transported back to a simpler time; in my childhood home with my larger-than-life father, alive and well.

Several years ago, my parents took a trip to England, and they had a wonderful time. My mother told us of all the places we needed to see should we ever get the chance to go.

Well, March of last year, was my chance to go.

I flew solo to London, as my husband was stationed in the UK at the time. I packed my clothes and shoes into my dad’s luggage – the same suitcase he had used years before when my parents made the trip. Checking my bags at the airport, I smirked as I thought, “Hey Dad, your bags are making the trip again.”


Out in the midlands, a good hour away from London, I had the experience of a lifetime, living in a quaint English village. The scenery was out of a storybook, and my husband and I traveled to as many places as we could in the two weeks I was there. Of course we sought out the traditional fish and chip dinner at a centuries-old pub, and some had some other wonderful foods – likes crumpets, bubble-and-squeak and, of course, crisps. I was fascinated by the trains, taxi and Underground subway system. The traffic rounds and driving on the wrong side of the road took a bit of getting used to, and I can’t tell you how many times I tried to get into the passenger side and found a steering wheel in my way.

I was in awe that I was in the homeland of literary greats and the Queen Mum. I fell in love with England – the accents, the customs, the people.

Big BenThe weather wasn’t the most agreeable during my time across the pond. But the weekend we chose to tour London was perfect – sunny and warm. We walked miles and saw Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, The Eye of London – all the tourist hot spots. Two of the last “must-sees” on our London list were Harrod’s and Abbey Road. But we were quickly running out of time. We didn’t toss a coin, because my husband and I knew what we would choose.

We chose Abbey Road.

Beatles Coffee ShopNow, it simply wasn’t a matter of walking from the grounds of Buckingham Palace to St. John’s, where the famous Abbey Road Studios and cross walk are located. We had to find the correct Underground station and change subways routes a few different times to get to our destination. (Oh, by the way, when they say Underground, they mean it! I had no idea how deep into the earth we were as we traveled through London!)

We exited the subway station, and went to the Beatles Coffee Shop at the entrance. Without even asking, the owner handed us a map and sent us up the street to find Abbey Road.

What an amazing experience to walk the path that the Beatles made famous. Yes, we had to be concerned that we’d be hit be a car while snapping photos. Yes, we took many shots of us crossing the street, plus photos of Abbey Road Studios – where music history was made. We weren’t alone in our walk – not only were there plenty of tourists, we sent a text to our daughter, back home in the States, and she actually watched us crossing Abbey Road live, real-time, on a web cam. Think about that!

Abbey Road

It’s hard to believe that crossing Abbey Road was such a highlight for my husband and me. But I guess it makes sense, when you think of how the Beatles impacted our lives, from the time we toddlers until even now. It was really awesome to walk that part of history, where Memory Lane meets Abbey Road.

© Lynne Cobb – 2014

What are your memories of the British invasion? Have you ever crossed Abbey Road?

crossing Abbey Road

Part of the Midlife Boulevard blog hop.

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Opening my mouth by closing my wallet


“Vulgarity begins when imagination succumbs to the explicit.” – Doris Day

You know, I didn’t want to be another commentator on the recent MTV Video Music Awards show, and yet, here I am, typing away from my little corner of the world. Since I can’t watch the news without being constantly reminded of this ridiculous dance routine, I just can’t stop thinking about how disgusted I am with the vile performance by Miley Cyrus, Robin Thicke, and all those involved in such a complete display of vulgarity.

Maybe I have just reached the end of my proverbial rope with the shock-pop culture and the double standard of it all. Everyone is quick to jump on the bandwagon and wag their fingers at Ms. Cyrus, but that is really unfair.

Most likely, some smooth-talking producer was stroking this young lady’s ego, promising her the moon and the stars, fame and fortune. And let’s not forget, there was a married man on stage, singing as she was twerking, back-up singers and dancers who were just as vulgar, and many folks behind the scenes. Sure, she could have said “no” to the pornographic performance. But she didn’t, as she, like many other young ladies, can’t seem to shake the “Miss Goody Two-Shoes” image fast enough.

But why? When did being a good person with decent morals and values become such a bad thing?

We can sit and blame her parents, the media, the music industry, the choreographers and a litany of others, but really, if we are going to be honest, we need to take a harsh look at the image in the mirror and put the blame where it belongs – on ourselves.

For decades, we have watched the erosion, as television, Madison Avenue and the music industry have added an edge to sitcoms, movies, videos, reality shows, commercials and the Super Bowl half-time shows. On the slippery slope of being edgy, each performer or commercial has to one-up themselves for the next round. And yet, we keep watching these shows and videos, and purchasing their music and products.

Look at the Herbal Essence commercials, where the gorgeous model with a magnificent mane of hair is having an orgasmic experience in the bathroom of an airplane (I mean, really? You can hardly turn to flush in one of those insanely small flying-port-a-potties, let alone wash one’s hair. But I digress…) And let’s not forget the big-chested, bronzed-up model seductively eating burgers and fish sandwiches during last year’s Super Bowl commercials, or the insanely provocative commercials promoting a Website hosting service…the list is endless.

Seriously, when one needs to sell talent, a product or performance with a large set of breasts, six-pack abs, heavy breathing or twerking, there must be no other value in said object.

Reality shows? Don’t get me started! We watch as babies are paraded around in beauty pageants and dance shows. What message are we sending little girls? And let’s face it, those are little girls that are being made-up in make-up. They are being sexualized for what? Potential scholarship money? A shot at stardom? A mansion?

If these little ones do get a shot at stardom, then what? We watch the train wreck that becomes their lives after their 15 minutes of fame ceases, or their first pimple appears? Then we read about their drug addictions? Or tabloid stories about who they are sleeping with? Or their stints in rehab, so they can be demoralized and humiliated by late-night comedians?

And yet, we continue to watch these shows, buy these products, and go along our merry way, until one of these child stars grows up, gets outrageous – either onstage or off – and we get all holier-than-thou and judgmental. We’ll drag his or her name through the mud for a few days, until the next child-star-gone-wild makes headlines.

And then, we will go through this insane charade again.

If, in fact, we are tired of this, and we are concerned about these kids as well as our own kids who are watching this disturbing trend in our society, then we, as parents, need to band together and make it stop.

How? Let’s hit the television and video producers and marketers in their wallets by keeping our pocketbooks closed. If they really think we are going to continue to allow them to line their pockets at the expense of our children and our society as a whole, they are wrong. If we demand something better, then they will have to deliver something better. Until then, they will continue to pump vulgarity into every aspect of our lives, because by our actions, and by our not taking a stand for decency, we allow them to deliver filth.

What do you think? Let me know in the comment section.

© Lynne Cobb – 2013