Things of the Year: Lindsey Buckingham, Black Licorice Ice Cream


2023 was a really boring year for me. I took a six-month long data analytics course between April and October, so I spent most of my year doing weird computer math and feeling disconnected from my actual personality. In January I went to Arizona, but January doesn’t really count as part of the year. January always has more of a “last year” vibe to it.  

The most interesting thing that happened to me in 2023 was that I fell in love with Lindsey Buckingham. I figured out I loved Lindsey Buckingham while walking home from work in the middle of June. I was listening to Tusk, which I first found out existed eighteen years ago, when a girl I used to DJ with played me the first Lindsey song I ever loved, What Makes You Think You’re The One.

I loved What Makes You Think You’re The One immediately. Some songs you have to listen to five or six times before they get under your nails, but that one hit straight away. It’s so rowdy, so fresh, like opening up the creaky white front door of your shabby oceanside cottage and being rudely yet invigoratingly smacked in the face by a mean, cold, Novembery breeze.

Eighteen years ago, I didn’t understand how it was a Fleetwood Mac song. Back then, I “hated” Fleetwood Mac. I disliked all the popular singles off Rumours, and Stevie Nicks’ genius didn’t speak to me. In the present tense, I think Stevie is fine, though I will always find her witchy aesthetic off-putting. I live in a world of clean lines and brutal honesty, and the art I love reflects it.

Why is a boy singing it? I wondered. Since when is there a boy in Fleetwood Mac? I looked at the album cover, which was austere and had a dog on it. I guess on this weird Fleetwood Mac album with a dog on it, a boy sometimes sings. I had no idea who that boy was, or that his name was, of all names, Lindsey. Such a hot name for a dude!

But I didn’t care. In that era of my life, all I wanted was a cool song to play to the twelve people that came to my DJ night every Tuesday. I collected 45s, and was enamored by the idea of the physical single: a song as a possession, an artifact, a song that I could hold.

For seventeen years, I was content with loving What Makes You Think You’re The One as a unique object. No part of me was interested in further exploring the austere-looking album with a dog on it.

Last year, in 2022, while watching the excellent though terribly named HBO TV show Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty (Honestly, why didn’t they just call it The Lake Show? That name was right there waiting for them), I started loving a second song from Tusk: its title track, Tusk. It played over a montage of the 1979/80 Los Angeles Lakers winning a bunch of games dazzlingly, and was so monstrous and bombastic that I had choice but to Shazam it. It’s so embarrassing to Shazam a song. Everyone is at their personal most vulnerable while Shazaming.

I will probably always associate Tusk with vintage basketball, and with athleticism in general. I love listening to Tusk while going ham on the elliptical machine or stomping exuberantly down a city street. This past July, I was soberly walking down Dundas Street behind an obviously drunk girl. The drunk girl was walking alone and clearly going through it: at one point she stopped to smell a flower in someone’s yard, then turned on a dime and rejected the notion of behaving positively toward a flower and ripped it off its stalk. Then she threw it into oncoming traffic. She jumped into the air and tried to smack a way-high-up tree branch with her fingertips. I thought, So many times, I have been you. I hoped she was listening to Tusk.

            Tusk is a perfect balance of exactly 50% creepy and 50% celebratory, which is a very Lindsey-y vibe. When I got into it last summer, I intuitively knew that it was written by the same “boy” as my snarling and beloved What Makes You Think You’re The One, a boy who I was by then secure in knowing was named Lindsey Buckingham.


In May of this year, I was at work, working. I was sitting at the bar, entering some numbers into columns on my laptop. As a function of whatever “70s daytime chill” Spotify playlist someone had indifferently put on, Fleetwood Mac’s The Chain began to play. I’m sure I had some baseline negative reaction to it in my head, then went back to not caring about it, then noticed I was actually sort of liking it. I started involuntarily drumming along to it on the side of the bar, and possibly even grooving a little, like with my shoulders or whatever. Disgusting! I think it’s unsightly to do things like chair-dance in public; you should sit still like a big girl. But, unprecedented as it was, something about The Chain was calling out to me, and I announced to whoever happened to be in my vicinity: “This is the most I’ve ever loved The Chain in my life!”

The next day, I walked across the city from my apartment to my dad’s. I was listening to music on headphones, and after about fifteen minutes of listening to boring whatever, I remembered how excellent The Chain had sounded the day before, and started craving it.

I gave in, and listened to The Chain on repeat for the remainder of my walk. It was a memorable walk. I walked through three neighbourhoods, and in each neighbourhood, I realized, I looked like something completely different. In my own neighbourhood, I looked like what I was: a sort of cool woman in her late thirties on an off-day. In the next neighbourhood, King West, hordes of generationally wealthy young’uns were dressed up to eat fancy bad brunch by ring-light, and I looked like the scrub of the year. To them I’m sure I came off like a depressing fifty-year-old. Finally, I passed St. Lawrence Market and reached my dad’s neighbourhood, populated by unimaginative tourists and fifty-plus condo dwellers, where I sparkled like a fabulous supermodel. Looks mean nothing, I thought. I look like nothing.

Formally, The Chain doesn’t count as a Lindsey song: The Chain is the only Fleetwood Mac song co-authored by all five members of the band. When I listen to it now, I wonder which contributions are Lindsey’s, and if the Lindsey-fifth composes the bulk of what calls out to me. The part of The Chain I love most, and think of often, is of course the lyric, “If you don’t love me now, you will never love me again,” which is an endearingly/ irritatingly dramatic thing to say. To me it sounds like a Lindsey lyric, since Lindsey lyrics are often bolstered by an undercurrent of mean-spiritedness. He’s always pettily making some point about how someone else’s bad behaviour is ruining his day, then making a judgment call about it. These are not the most virtuous of vibes, but they’re legitimate vibes we have all experienced, and every real vibe deserves representation.

Mostly I like to think about whether or not If you don’t love me now, you will never love me again is universally true. It’s a grand assertion, which I love, but the dark side of a grand assertion is that they very often mean nothing at all. Very often, they’re just some idiotic thing a drama queen said to get a reaction out of somebody else.

 I don’t think “If you don’t love me now, you will never love me again” is sometimes true and sometimes isn’t. I think it must either be a universal truth or else complete bullshit. On the one hand, it’s reasonable to think that love is a constant: if you love someone, you love someone, always have and always will. Love, using this logic, will do anything to stay alive. It will float like a vapour outside an airplane window and ooze through tiny crevices like Alex Mack. Severing a love connection is like beheading someone. There is no coming back from it.  

Or maybe not! Maybe love is indifferent and we all make way too big a deal out of it. I once knew a man who likened sex to playing tennis: “back and forth, back and forth, back and forth,” he said, so blasé, shrugging, like all of it was nothing. Maybe love is like that too.

Maybe love isn’t turbulent so much as it’s athletic, one person vs. another, a competitive and constructed state that Lindsey Buckingham entirely deserves to write a defensive lyric about, abruptly ending the game with a cool finality. He wins.


I don’t care about Rumours. For the most part, I think it’s tacky. Even the cover is offensive to me, with no Lindsey in sight, just Stevie and Mick Fleetwood looking like the most affected high school theatre nerds you ever met in your life. Mick’s limp little ponytail photographed from that hard side angle makes me feel depressed to share a birthday with him (which I do).  

There are three Lindsey songs on Rumours, but one of them is Go Your Own Way, which sounds like twenty thousand car commercials and doesn’t count. So,

There are two Lindsey songs on Rumours: Never Going Back Again and Second Hand News. Never Going Back Again is the one I like less of the two, although I do like it. It sounds very fresh and clear, encapsulating a feeling of waking up in the morning, opening your eyes and having an overwhelming feeling of decisiveness about your day. Sorry to harp on the montage thing, but I love a fucking montage, and Never Going Back Again sounds like it should be playing in a Nora Ephron movie montage of the main character cleaning her house, and the cleaning of the house would be a metaphor for the untangling of her soul.

Second Hand News, my favourite Lindsey song on Rumours, is a lyrically sadsack-y but sonically jolly romp through the grass featuring Lindsey at his dorkiest, which works. Normally I prefer for Lindsey to be a cool guy, but since Rumours is so intrinsically corny, it’s relevant that he leans in.

Many times over the course of this tune, Lindsey sings the non-words, “Doot-doodley-doo.” I’m not a person who would ever respond to any “doot-doodley-doo,” in fact my fear of “doot-doodley-doo -energy is what kept me very far away from Rumours for thirty-eight years, but there is something a little different about a Lindsey “doot-doodley-doo”: it’s a powerful, almost hateful, “doot-doodley-doo.” That nasty/nerdy paradox is intrinsic to the Lindsey Buckingham experience; I can’t think of anyone else in the world who could ever imbue a “doot-doodley-doo” with such palpable, genuine violence.

But of course the crown jewel of the Second Hand News lyric is, “Won’t you lay me down in the tall grass and let me do my stuff?” When I first heard Lindsey ask this chill and beautiful question, I interpreted it to mean “Will everybody leave me alone for one goddamned second of my life so I can take refuge in the majestic beauty of the natural environment and, like, make art about it?” But after a few more listens, I realized that Lindsey is likelier talking about sex. The preceding lyric— “When times go bad/ And you can't get enough…”— is the tell. And later in the song, there’s a call-back where he sings: “Oh, couldn’t you just let me go down and do my stuff?” and that kind of spells the sex thing out for you.

I like this interpretation too. It’s like, “I know our relationship is in deep trouble at the moment, and I don’t feel great about it, but maybe we could just put it out of our minds for tonight and I’ll put a solid effort into having better-than-usual sex with you, which I feel like you’ll be into.” And I’m sorry, but if you can’t relate to using sex as a band-aid solution to momentarily fix your broken relationship, I don’t think that Lindsey Buckingham and I are the right fit for you.

One last thing I’d like to say during the sex portion of this essay is that I would be very interested in holding a round table discussion centred around the topic, “Who is a better lover: Mick Fleetwood or Lindsey Buckingham?” I bet a lot of people would want to make the point that Mick is a better lover because he’s less hot and therefore has more to prove, but I strongly disagree with these hypothetical Mick-supporters, which is saying a lot, because in almost any other situation I would big time stand up for the person who has the same birthday as me being better at sex. But I just think it’s really obvious that Lindsey Buckingham can fuck.


In June, I finally bit the bullet and started listening to Tusk, the austere Fleetwood Mac album with a dog on the cover. Tusk, I realized, is the perfect Fleetwood Mac album for me. It’s Lindsey-dominant, and the Lindsey Universe is chilly, earthy, meandering and spare. Emotionally, it’s on the depressing side of neutral; organizationally, it reminds me of two other strange and disjointed albums I love deeply, Sandinista! and The White Album. Let us take a moment to celebrate their adjacent lack of cohesion, and the concept of lack of cohesion in general. I’m over cohesion. I want everything to be oddly shaped and I want all the pointy edges to jut out so everybody’s banging into each other all the time. I want the ambiance to be universally unsettling and I want all the math to stop adding up and I want to revert to the Julian calendar so that it will never be the real day it’s supposed to be again. I want to listen to Tusk.

I’ve finally gotten us to the point where I’m walking home from work in the middle of June, the time from the first sentence in this essay, when I figured the whole thing out.

I was walking home from work, listening to Tusk. Not That Funny comes after That’s All For Everyone, the first of two times on the album when you get two Lindsey songs in a row. There’s a moment in That’s All when Lindsey sings the words I can’t stay, I can’t deceive in a voice so heart-wrenching it makes you want to get a fucking tattoo about it. Every time I hear it, the I can’t stay makes me feel like someone I’m in love with just told me that they love me— it’s a similar style of feeling seen. I went on a meditation retreat last summer, and this thing happened to me where I stopped being able to understand what my personality is, which was uncomfortable but a win overall, since personalities are pretty futile. Since then, the only thing in the world I can think of as being “my personality” is the sound of Lindsey Buckingham singing I can’t stay. I can’t deceive is beautiful too, but I don’t think I’m I can’t deceive yet. I can’t deceive is my aspiration.

The famous thing about Not That Funny is that Lindsey Buckingham sang the entire thing while in a push-up position. I actually don’t know how famous that fact is. I learned it on the Not That Funny Wikipedia entry, my go-to source for all things Lindsey Buckingham. Says the Not That Funny Wikipedia entry, “Retrospectively, Marcello Carlin of Uncut described it as a "disturbing" song on which Buckingham’s near-psychotic guitar and vocal screams approach Pere Ubu territory.” I don’t know anything about Pere Ubu or Pere Ubu territory, but it makes me feel proud of Lindsey Buckingham that this Marcello person called him “disturbing” and “psychotic” in the space of one sentence.

Hearing those two songs in a row, it’s very obvious that they were written by the same guy. Standing in the middle of a short little street I walk down almost every night yet have never bothered to learn the name of, a street that kind of reminds me of England, but doesn’t, I opened up the Wikipedia entry for Tusk and saw that every song I loved was written by Lindsey. I thought, “What a hot name for a dude!”


In the years following my short-lived DJ era, I became a lyrics-centric music-listener, and to truly love a song I needed to love the lyrics. I needed them to express a sentiment that I related to, and I needed them to be written by a person who I believed was similar to myself. I was dependent on music, co-dependent, asked a lot of it. I needed whatever assortment of sounds coming from my headphones to make me feel like I wasn’t alone. But in adulthood, I don’t crave that feeling at all.

Every day, I feel both deeply alone and not alone at all, and the music I’m listening to plays no role in either state. I just want to listen to the sound of songs sounding good. It’s a quiet, simple pleasure.

On an afternoon in early July, I crossed an imaginary barrier into knowing each Lindsey song on Tusk as an individual entity. Prior to that afternoon, they were all sort of mushed up together, like looking across the street without glasses on. I wasn’t a hundred percent sure which was which. But with time they all came into focus, and I became aware of my relationship to each of them, and I knew when I needed which, and what it might be good for, at what time of day it might sound best. Another six months has since passed, and now I know them even better. I know every word to every one of Lindsey’s songs. I even know all the words that aren’t the words to his songs, though could have been— one morning in August, I was taking an incredibly long subway ride to the go watch a full day of tennis at the National Bank Open (Carlos Alcaraz lost that day, and my dad texted me, Thanks for jinxing Carlos, which I thought was unfair). I was anxious on the subway, anxious about work and school and life and, ultimately, nothing, and I listened to all the Lindsey demos, outtakes, and early versions from the deluxe version of Tusk. The one that hit me hardest was his earliest version of That’s All For Everyone, which features a completely different lyric than the final cut: I’m so broken, he sings, But that’s alright. It’s an unoriginal, unimpressive lyric, something that a teenager would write, but he sings it like a wounded deer wailing, and every time I hear it, I feel something, and now when I listen to the cocky, sober album version, where it’s replaced with the damning I kill for everyone, I can hear the softer sentiment echoing behind it. In an early, punky demo of I Know I’m Not Wrong, he repeatedly wonders, Don’t know why I have to be so strong. This sentiment doesn’t make it to the final version, where it’s replaced with the deflecting Don’t blame me/ Please be strong. I am obsessed with wondering why he might have decided to make the change, if it was an act of self-preservation or if maybe he just didn’t feel like that anymore.

My favourite Lindsey song on Tusk is called Walk A Thin Line. It happened on that afternoon in early July, walking down the ugliest street in my neighbourhood, a street that is literally impossible for me to romanticize in writing. I heard the green swirls of it, and I knew something. I left writing about it until the end of this essay because it’s my favourite and for some reason that makes it the most important, but really, because it’s my favourite it’s the one I have the least to say about, or the one that I find loving the hardest to explain. It does contain the lyric “Fate takes time,” which is major. Maybe I’ll get a tattoo of it, but probably not. I take it too seriously. Unlike “If you don’t love me now, you will never love me again,” I knew “Fate takes time” was unequivocally true the second I heard it. I was so proud of Lindsey for thinking up something so smart.


Here's a list of all my favorite things I ate/drank in 2023:

i. On December 16 I flew from Los Angeles to Massachusetts for Christmas and then on December 17 I flew to Las Vegas for a wedding on the 18th and then on the morning of the 19th I flew back to Massachusetts. It was a weird move and at first I had major anxiety about making it happen, but then on the first day of December I was driving home listening to "Margaret" by Lana Del Rey and when Lana sang "By the way, the party's December 18" I was like Oh my god you're right. The wedding was at the chapel where Frank Sinatra married Mia Farrow and Ben Affleck married Jennifer Lopez and the minister was an Elvis impersonator and the reception was at the Punk Rock Museum where I took this good picture. I was going to do an exhaustive food diary for my trip but instead here's a quick little list: 

-cheeseburgers and fries from room service at midnight the night I flew in, plus some sauv blanc in an ice bucket and a few sips of Scott's vanilla milkshake

-a Bloody Mary in the lounge at the Peppermill and then banana pancakes with scrambled eggs and sausage links and coffee

-a birria quesadilla from the taco truck at the reception and then a piece of confetti wedding cake, plus some champagne 

-a "Nurse Ginger Greene" smoothie from the hotel lobby (spinach, kale, ginger, avocado, lemon, banana, date, maple), which I drank at like 6:30 in the morning while walking around the Nutcracker-themed display in the Bellagio botanical gardens

ii. In May my sister and I went to Egypt to visit my best friend and our first weekend there we stayed at the Old Cataract, which is the hotel where Agatha Christie wrote Death on the Nile. At breakfast there was strawberry juice, lemon mint juice, carrot juice, dried apricots and figs, halva, whole kiwis, pancakes with Nutella, custard-filled donuts, flaky pastries with whole dates inside, a million other magnificent things. I drank strawberry juice almost every day and fell in love with mahalabia (rose water milk pudding), and before our 3 a.m. flight home I got an Oreo McFlurry at the Cairo airport. And on the way to Cairo I met my sister in Miami and we had dinner at a Cuban place in South Beach where they sold Alka-Seltzer and guava pastries by the register and the salad dressing was homemade Italian in a Heinz ketchup bottle. We sat at the counter and I had shrimp and rice and beer and it was heaven.

iii. a cone of black licorice ice cream from Fosselman's in Alhambra, which stained my teeth and tongue and lips black. As an anise experience it's less of a black-jelly-bean scenario and much more akin to Italian cookies on Christmas- a cool little confluence of garish and delicate.

iv. a cherry and cheese danish from the donut shop in Boogie Nights on a cloudy afternoon in Reseda, where I went to research a short story I had published in Lit Angels earlier this year. The story is called "A Concept Album About the Feral Cats of Reseda" and I made a playlist to go with it, here

v. Trader Joe's Winter Sangria Seltzer which pairs beautifully with Tragedy Oil by Marissa Zappas 

vi. On a Saturday morning in November my boyfriend and I went to get coffee downtown with a musician guy who's very important to me (I feel weird saying his name but here's a thing Jen May and I wrote 10 years ago, it's really good). I typed coffee just then but really he and my bf split a big French press and I drank an iced matcha made with Earl Grey, essence of pink rose petals, and oat milk, which is exactly the type of floofy drink I only allow myself on special occasions. I wanted to exist in a pink-rose-petal-y state of mind; I wanted to radiate a serene and lovely energy to outshine all my nervousness. I expected the dude to be completely wonderful and he was, and for days afterward I was high on the cute thrill of drinking iced matcha on the sidewalk with someone from one of my favorite bands since I was 14. The big thing I kept thinking about was Christmas morning when I was 16 and my stepdad had bought me that band's third album and after opening presents I went up to my room and put the CD on and got in bed and read Lisa Crystal Carver's liner notes, which remain one of the top five most formative literary works of my life. It kinda reminds me of that spoken part in the middle of "Quest for the Cup" that goes: "All your dreams will come true. All my dreams came true, but now I have a bunch of other dreams." 

vii. I already wrote about all my favorite things I cooked this year, but now I feel like showing off some of the cakes I baked:

viii. a Baked Alaska at Lawry's, prepared tableside by a man who spooned blue flames from some sort of magical steel pot, split between me and five of my friends on a Friday night in Beverly Hills 

ix. a piña colada served in a cracked coconut shell at the Broken Compass, when my sister came to visit in September

x. a banana cream pie from Johnny's Pastrami in West Adams, eaten on the ride home from my Friday afternoon writing class in August, in celebration of my 20th anniversary of living in Los Angeles 

xi. Caesar salad with grilled shrimp + side of fries + a Bloody Mary at the Logan Airport Legal Sea Foods, aka the all-time #1 pre-night-flight airport meal

xii. a cute little bottle of Coke at Musso & Frank's, where we got shrimp cocktail to start and I impulse-ordered the avocado cocktail to go with it. I was picturing something archaic and elegant like when Betty Draper orders an avocado stuffed with crabmeat from room service when she and Don stay at the Savoy on Valentine's Day; really it was just an avocado artlessly doused in Thousand Island. It was totally stupid but I felt a great affection for it anyway. Also I just learned that an avocado stuffed with crabmeat is called an avocado mimosa, which is very beautiful and inspiring to me. I love it so much I'm going to make it my entire life concept for 2024. My new year's resolution is avocado mimosa. 


All Our Favorite Beatles Songs Right Now




Cry Baby Cry is a solid second-tier late Beatles song unfairly relegated to the third- or fourth-string due to, in my opinion, poor placement on the White Album tracklist. Cry Baby Cry feels weirdly far away from the group, tucked all the way into the second side of the second record, sandwiched between the convivial but irrelevant Savoy Truffle and the worst vibes Beatles song ever recorded to tape, Revolution 9. Cry Baby Cry and its palpable Side A energy should be up at front with its peers, White Album cool kids Glass Onion and Happiness Is A Warm Gun. It literally hates its life, eternally doomed to hang out with Paul’s most embarrassing wartime ditty and Ringo’s bad lullaby. It’s rare that I stick around long enough to make it to that hidden corner of the White Album, but when I do, stumbling upon Cry Baby Cry feels like finding an exquisite piece of jewelry hidden behind stacks of moth-eaten hand towels in an elderly relative’s hall closet.

Cry Baby Cry is charismatic but calm, not too happy/not too sad, slightly creepy, slightly pretty, and distinctly warm. It gives off a low light, like standing in a dark room lit only by the outline of a closed doorframe, which leads to a connected room, in which the lights are on. The lyrics are druggy, but they aren’t psychedelic, although they are surreal. They’re mostly about kings and queens and duchesses doing whatever the fuck thing popped into John Lennon’s mind while he was writing them; I don’t think he really poured his heart and soul into this one, which works. I’d never really noticed or considered the lyric At twelve o’clock a meeting ‘round the table/ For a séance in the dark/ With voices out of nowhere/ Put on specially by the children for a lark until about three minutes before I started writing the preceding paragraph. I was lying on a marshmallowey queen-sized bed in a one-room cabin in the woods, listening to Cry Baby Cry while reading along to the lyrics on Spotify, holding my phone in that embarrassing position where it’s hovering over your face and if you drop it you may legitimately give yourself a black eye.

It's very beautiful that no matter how deeply I believe I’ve rinsed every drop of the Beatles out of the Beatles, I am still able to be stunned by their genius. With voices out of nowhere is the most poetic elegant thing and John Lennon just scrawled it down like it was nothing. I might name a novel after it one day.


Sometimes people remind me of the part in Confess Fletch when Jon Hamm is interviewing a wannabe influencer and asks her, “Don’t you just hate people who are too poor to afford beauty?” I’ve never seen Confess Fletch but I saw that clip somewhere a few weeks ago, and it felt like a perfect satire of a conversation I’d recently heard that reminded me how sometimes when people make a lot of money they’re not just content with accumulating more — they want to deny other people access to beautiful things, like nature. They want to keep the beautiful nature all to themselves, because they’ve earned it or something, and it’s such a buzzkill when their beautiful-nature consumption is interrupted by the presence of a moneyless person. Which is weird to me, because shouldn’t having lots of money make you more generous? I sound like a dumb hippie but it’s fine.

A lot of people have way too much money and it grosses me out. I suppose on some level it would be good to transcend complaining about people with too much money ruining the world with their ugly anxieties and bland sensibilities, but I don’t want to transcend it. I hope I hate it more and more. There are moments when I wish I could be soulful about it like George singing “I Me Mine,” but in this situation I’m mostly okay with being a graceless brat.

Once upon a time when I was making an amount of money that possibly qualified me as too poor to afford beauty, I invented this thing where I’d drive three hours up the coast to a hot springs resort where you could rent a hot springs tub for ten bucks an hour. The tubs are in these little wooden huts on a big hill by the ocean; the water is high in sulfur and helps you breathe better and turns your skin all clear and luminous. Post-tub I’d drive to a lost-in-time beach town a few miles away and walk around by the beach and all the groovy beach houses, and sometimes eat an elaborate muffin in a beachside cafe. Then I’d drive the three hours back home, feeling self-contained but in a way that was very lucid and expansive. I first started doing my hot springs trips around the same time Laura and I started writing our Beatles book, so for most of those six hours in the car I’d listen to the Beatles and write Beatles-book stories in my head. It was the era when my LiveJournal was the first result when you googled Starbucks polar bear cookies, which feels poetically correct — my life had the mood of deep secrets colliding with being effusive about something as pointless as a bear-shaped sugar cookie, and the mood sustained for a long time.

At some point I stopped going up to my hot springs spot. Life got too busy, and I was careless about tending to the part of me that needs to spend at least a day or two a year in a state of uninterrupted devotion to the Beatles and water. A couple years ago I went back again and promised myself I’d start going every two months (I’m a Capricorn, regiment is my best thing), but I slipped up and by the time this fall came around nearly a year had passed since my last visit. The last week of October I finally made the trip, but I had a hard time getting out of my head. I was too horrified by the world to tune it all out, mostly I just felt tired in that heavy-balloon way that rest can’t erase. I left the tubs and went to the ocean and did the cool thing of trying to will myself into a transcendent experience, which of course was a total bust. The closest I got was the realization that one of my new life goals is to see a coyote on a beach.

On the ride home I put on Abbey Road and decided to listen all the way through, as a last-ditch effort to shake myself out of feeling flattened and low. To me Abbey Road is the most reliable shortcut to a Beatlesy state of being, which is physical as well as mental/emotional/spiritual; there’s a lightening and loosening that comes with disengaging from the shit that keeps you on edge in everyday life. It’s like melting but it’s also like snow, like when it’s snowing and you don’t feel inconvenienced or aggrieved by it — you’re fully delighted by watching the world turn all frosted and pillowy and still. It feels like being little and very old at the same time, and if you’re lucky being old means you’ve loved so many people, and now you get to zone out on the falling snow and miss them all but in a way that widens and brightens your heart.

By the time I got to “Oh! Darling” it started working, and there was a big show-offy full moon out that magnified the drama of “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)" about ten thousand percent and really brought the whole thing home. It was the first time I’d listened to “You Never Give Me Your Money” in maybe years — it’s my second-favorite Beatles song and I need to withhold it from myself so it hits exactly right at the part when the Beatles all count to seven together, which means more to me than church. After that the whole world warped into a Beatlesy wonderland, and "The End" did the thing where it sounds like the song that plays when you first walk into Heaven. I stopped for gas in the middle of nowhere and checked my phone and Matthew Perry had died, and I texted my best friend and then texted Laura and said we should write about our current favorite Beatles songs. Then I drove the rest of the way home listening to the White Album, also known as The Beatles.

I don't remember when or where I listened to "Dig A Pony" that day, but I do know that "Dig A Pony" feels like the opposite of wanting to keep the ocean or a forest or a tree all to yourself. It makes everything feel free like being a coyote on a beach.


On my last day of living in a cabin in the woods, the sun came out, and I decided to go for a little walk. I intended to listen to the “new” “Beatles” song, Now & Then, as I walked down a leafy forest trail, but as soon as I put it on, I realized that I didn’t want to know anything about it or acknowledge that it existed. George Harrison is dead, and the world doesn’t need Paul and Ringo scribbling all over some abandoned John Lennon deep cut. John Lennon, as you may know, is also dead.

Instead I put on Real Love, which was also once a “new” Beatles song, released alongside Free as a Bird in 1995 to promote The Beatles Anthology. However, there are a few major differences between Real Love and Now & Then:

1) George Harrison was alive during Real Love era and therefore plays on it,
2) Real Love slaps, and
3) Real Love counts as an actual Beatles song.

By the time the Beatles got to White Album era everyone was busy and feuding and growing apart and there are a bunch of songs that all the different combinations of Beatles do and don’t play on, but at that time the Beatles were all alive and active as Beatles. If all the Beatles are alive, a song with only two out of four Beatles playing on it still counts as a Beatles song, but if at least one Beatle is dead, you need three live Beatles to play on the dead Beatle’s abandoned deep cut for it to count as a real Beatles song. If two Beatles are dead, there are no more Beatles songs. QED.

All Beatles math aside— Real Love is a sick John deep cut to begin with, only improved by the addition of Paul, George and Ringo. Lyrically the song kicks off with the incredible All my little plans and schemes/Lost like some forgotten dreams, a couplet I relate to so deeply that it is almost physically painful for me. I spent the first thirty years of my life obsessively relating to John, my problematic fav John; I can rarely access those intense feelings of reverence and connection, I really have evolved into more of a George guy. But All my little plans and schemes brings my John complex rushing back: George might have a plan, but George would never have a scheme. I, like John, am a born schemer.

The lyric then turns into a more classically annoying solo John vibe. Solo John songs are either about John being a fucked up guy or John being co-dependently in love with Yoko Ono. This is a co-dependently in love with Yoko one. The lovely-dovey lyrics start out early-Beatles bland— Thought I’d been in love before/ But in my heart, I wanted more— before evolving into the slightly more compelling Seems like all I really was doing/Was waiting for you, which I like because it sounds like a George Harrison lyric that you think is about a girl but is actually about God.

Paul jacks up the melody to a thousand and George slays on guitar while Ringo toddlerishly bangs away. “Feel old yet?” memes are gauche but it’s weird to think that Real Love was as far away from the real Beatles as it is from today.


There was a thing going around earlier this year where someone wrote the prompt: “Make a 20-track comp of your all-time fav tracks, each artist can only feature once. Not the ‘best’ songs, the ones that bring instant joy the second you hear the first note, the ones that give other people the best insight into what stirs your soul.” Which is a sweet idea but doesn’t really work for me, mostly because my favorite songs don’t necessarily give me instant joy: sometimes what I most treasure in a song is its ability to turn me into a weepy little baby even when I’ve already cried all over it a thousand times before. And sometimes the most joy-giving songs aren’t overtly joyful, like how “Atlantis” by Donovan feels super-tragic but always thrills me cuz of Goodfellas, which to me is the vibrational equivalent of Christmas and Fourth of July fireworks happening at the same time — candy-like and explosive and way too much, but it keeps your soul intact on some kind of fundamental level. 

I never answered the prompt but I did make a list of 20 instant-joy songs, compiled here. It has the Crusaders and the Cars and Bauhaus and but no “Hey Bulldog,” which is one of the most joyful songs I’ve ever known. The deal is that you have to be delicate with “Hey Bulldog,” you can’t just go playing it anytime you need a little pick-me-up. I don’t ever want to get used to John Lennon barking like a dog and Paul cutely encouraging him, or the big riffy piano, or the cracked-open feeling of totally relating on “If you’re lonely you can talk to me.” I’d rather let it be a seasonal treat, like apple-cider donuts or Swiss Miss hot chocolate or a chocolate-covered marshmallow in the shape of a bunny. It's not about deprivation or self-denial; it's about making "Hey Bulldog" into its own little holiday, a holiday about dogs and pianos and whatever a wigwam is.


At some point in the last year “Sun King” slid into the top five of my all-time fave Beatles songs, which I never saw coming. It has to do with perfume and summertime and the twelve-story staircase built into the hillside two blocks down from my apartment — last summer I kept doing this thing where first thing in the morning I’d put on a grassy perfume like A Boundless and Radiant Aura by Universal Flowering or Petrichor by Marissa Zappas, then go for a nice punishing walk up the big staircase in the terrible August heat. And then I’d walk back down the hill, on a sleepy little side street where you can see all the way to Beverly Hills and one time a woman asked me to walk alongside her and her two tiny dogs so we could form a little pack against the coyote eyeing us all from the other side of the road. After the stairs the walk is easy but the sun and heat would put me in a cool daze magnified by the melting-together of perfume and sweat, and then I’d take 500 pictures of baby peaches on a peach tree and listen to songs like “Sun King,” and zone out on the Beatles singing in Spanish and Italian and the languid guitars that make me want to make metaphors about warm liquid gold, if that’s even a thing. All of that simulates the sensation of lying in a meadow under a cerulean sky, on a magnificently hot but mostly unhumid summer day. I’m pretty sure I've never lain in a meadow in my life, but it feels really right to me to start the day from a place of laze. 


In Spite Of All The Danger is the first Beatles song. They recorded it in a booth in a store in 1958. Ringo wasn’t there yet; in his place were two randoms named John Lowe and Colin Hanton. In 1958 the Beatles weren’t called the Beatles yet (they were called “the Quarrymen,” a band name so bland I’m genuinely shocked John Lennon could sink so low), but using the same logic as applied above, it still counts as a Beatles song, since ¾ Beatles were present.

I’ve never existed in a world where you can walk into a store and record a song in a booth for a quarter or whatever, but it sounds like a fun thing to do: a bunch of young lads crammed into a booth with their instruments, “mucking about.” “Having a laugh.” But In Spite Of All The Danger doesn’t sound like very much fun at all. It sounds eerie and sad, like they were singing it to the people who’d be listening to it after they were dead. It’s weird to think that I am those people.


A little while ago I heard Michelle Tea say this thing about how Capricorns get younger and looser and more free with age. I agree a million percent and would add that — as a Capricorn with her moon in Leo  aging also means becoming more and more deeply connected to Paul McCartney (a fellow Leo moon, just like Ringo, David Bowie, Lana Del Rey, Jane Fonda, Crispin Glover, Gandhi, and Chace Crawford). For me feeling closer to Paul means hitting a nice balance of competence and ease and infinite curiosity, living a cozy life in which you take a certain level of responsibility for cultivating that coziness. Like how when Paul moved onto his farm in Scotland in the '60s, he learned how to shear the sheep himself. 

2023 was the year I got really into cooking. I made ma-po tofu, chicken piccata, shrimp scampi, a lot of pozole, lamb ragu, lasagna, chicken tikka masala, Katharine Hepburn's brownies, chile colorado, chile verde, caldo verde, shepherd's pie, tres leches, a chocolate cake from scratch for my boyfriend Scott's birthday, chocolate chip banana bread, scones, pineapple upside-down cake, Cantonese tomato egg, a meatloaf, rice pilaf, a bunch of other stuff I'm forgetting. Next I want to make highbrow green bean casserole and jeweled rice with dried cherries and chicken pot pie, and maybe a ginger poundcake. I included that Paul pic at the top because that's exactly what I look like when I'm cooking, that's the exact vibe I inhabit in the kitchen. I like cooking because it requires a level of attention that leaves little to no room for thinking about anything else; it stills me and makes the whole house smell extravagant and good. I also like that it's the opposite of spending all day typing in a Word document you could make disappear forever in under a half a second.

The Saturday before I flew home for Thanksgiving I drove over to the neighborhood where I lived when Laura and I started writing our Beatles book, then went for a big long all-Beatles walk. It was a gray day but everything had that nice Beatlesy glow that happens when you're feeling particularly Beatles-aligned. I took a lot of pictures of weird flowers and artichokes being way over the top, and wandered into some secret alleyways where you meet cool guys like thisAfter my walk I went to Baller Hardware to get a roll of Gorilla Tape and ended up impulse-buying a strand of classic multicolored Christmas lights and a Baller Hardware hooded sweatshirt, partly because it was starting to feel spiritually incorrect that Kim Gordon owned a Baller Hardware hoodie and I somehow didn't. I love my Baller Hardware hoodie so much; it smells like Baller Hardware and Holy Hell. And then I went to Daily Donuts and got a big iced coffee, mostly in tribute to the picture of Fiona Apple reading the newspaper outside Daily Donuts in 1999. On the ride home it started raining and the "Anthology 3 Version" of "Something" came up on shuffle and made the sunshower a hundred times more evocative, and then later on I decorated the Christmas tree and made spaghetti and meatballs for supper and chocolate chip cookies from scratch.

Until recently "Martha My Dear" didn't mean much to me beyond a cute Italian boy I had a crush on in tenth grade singing it to me one day in history class. I love it because it's a song about a dog but not about a dog — it's not about much at all, but it adds a nice little splash to everything if you're already feeling pretty good. It exists in the part of my heart that in some ways just wants my writing to get more and more trifling as I get older, both in the sense of the writing being frivolous/impractical and in that I hope it's something like a trifle: a treat made of cake and pudding and cream and extremely cheap things like smashed-up fun-size candy bars, whatever kind of candy bars you love best.


To Wander Aimlessly Is Very Unswinging

Last month Liz and Laura Jane talked on the phone about Get Back for two hours and nine minutes. Here is a transcript of most of our conversation.

LIZ: Before Omicron, I thought one of our Get Back talking points could be which of the Beatles would get COVID.

LJ: Oh, wow, that's so fun!


LIZ: It would be John and Ringo, right?


LJ: John is the obvious one, because he just wouldn't care. Maybe he wouldn’t be a brazen anti-vaxxer, but he’d be vaccine-skeptical. My dad and I had that conversation about Joe Strummer. I feel like he might be an anti-vaxxer, but not a bad anti-vaxxer - he’d just want you to question what they're telling you. John Lennon could have that vibe too. And then Ringo’s just kind of delicate, he was sick as a child. But he's taking good care of himself now. Although I guess it's like if COVID was in the ‘60s, if Get Back took place during the COVID pandemic.


LIZ: I'm so glad it didn’t.


LJ: Me too. I feel like Paul would be so good at not getting COVID. But actually, I'm going to come out of left field and say that having spent a lot of the pandemic deeply immersed in a Buddhist meditation community, a lot of those people are intense anti-vaxxers. So maybe George would get COVID ‘cause he’d be like, “I'm not like putting any chemicals or preservatives into my body.” He’d feel strongly about it from a wellness standpoint. They’d all get COVID, and then poor Paul who works so hard would be in the studio with them, so he’d get COVID too. But somehow George Martin would never get COVID.


LIZ: One of the thoughts I kept having during Get Back was, “Does George Martin like the Beatles?”


LJ: I feel like during this, not so much.


LIZ: He just seems so much older than them and more sophisticated and kind of detached.


LJ: He’s also not there very much. It’s all Glyn Johns.


LIZ: Do you like Glyn Johns?


LJ: I love him. He’s my favorite. I had this revelation that in the context of watching this, he’s kind of this nobody. I'm like a Beatles nerd, I know all the Beatles stuff, and until this I hadn’t really had that big of an understanding of Glyn Johns. And then I was like, “I bet in other arenas of Glyn Johns’s life he’s such hot shit.” And then he comes to this studio and he's just the nerd with the mixing board. But in every other second of Glyn Johns’s life everyone's like, “Oh my God, have you met Glyn? He works with the Beatles! He’s so cool and so rich and has such good style." And it really changed how I felt about Glyn Johns. He’s this hyper-successful dude with such a sick job.


LIZ: I love when Heather comes into the studio and she wears Glyn Johns’s coat.


LJ: I like when Heather comes into the studio, period. She really takes over. It's nice how much she loves Paul.


LIZ: He seems like a real good stepdad.


LJ: Yeah, he does not shy away from that aspect at all.


LIZ: I love when he tells her, “You're going back in your box.” That’s such a cute stepdad thing to say.

LIZ: So did you like Get Back?

LJ: I did, I loved it. I can't believe we got to have new Beatles stuff. I wish that would keep happening. Like if they said, “Surprise, we have one of these for every Beatles album.”


LIZ: Apparently there's an 18-hour director's cut that might get released.


LJ: I would watch it. I don't care. Today I was thinking about the last time that I was in L.A. and how there was a moment where Jed was talking about how you watch things over and over and he asked me, “Are you like that?” So then today I was like, “I'm going to try to watch Get Back like Liz would watch it.” And I just had it on in my house all day. And it was so nice to have the white noise of the Beatles for every second that I was doing whatever in my house, like coming out of the shower and doing the dishes with the din of the weird Beatles doing their stuff. So I would definitely have a place in my life for 18 hours of Get Back.


LIZ: With Mad Men, I always just put it on when I’m doing makeup or straightening my hair or whatever. So maybe Get Back will be thing that I just put on all the time now.


LJ: There’s always a lot of small details to uncover. What would you say is your biggest takeaway from Get Back?


LIZ: Great question! It really changed the way I feel about John, more than anything. My first impression of John as a child - he always kind of scared me.


LJ: He’s not very child-friendly.


LIZ: And as an adult, this was the first time he seemed like a real person to me. He wasn’t like JOHN LENNON, all caps, like everyone always talks about him. He just seemed like a dude that’s annoying and funny and a fucking weirdo. I just loved him so much and was just really charmed by how much he and Paul love each other.


LJ: They loved to goof around. I had a really good chat with my friend Jack about that part of John and Paul's dynamic, which is sort of never-before-seen. My takeaway is that I love Paul McCartney and I’m on Paul's side, and I like John less than I liked him going into it. I was annoyed by how much John’s always goofing off. It was like, “Dude, can you just play the song, and not in a fun accent?” Jack is a musician with more insight into what the studio is like. He was like, “They probably just unfairly weighted the goofing-around parts in the documentary because if they didn’t, it would have been 19 hours of them playing 'Two of Us' over and over again." And we were talking about how it’s weird how John’s funnier than Paul. I feel like it's a very familiar situation, like when you're hanging out with someone who's slightly funnier than you, when you're a person who often is the funny person. But I felt really bad for Paul, just always having to be slightly worse at accents and slightly less on his feet than the person who he’ll be equated next to for his entire lifetime. I really feel being in that situation. There are some parts where I couldn't deal with watching Paul being less funny.

LIZ: It made me love Paul more. I mean, I don't know how you would watch Get Back and not think he's the most wonderful person.


LJ: It really was good PR for Paul McCartney and the negative belief that he was a control freak and a real dick in the studio. He’s so obviously not. But I can see how he'd be annoying if you were George Harrison.


LIZ: But it made me love George more too. I just love them all more than I did before.


LJ: Me too. But Paul and Ringo, my love for them skyrocketed. I guess we’re all really used to seeing line graphs now because of COVID; I’m really picturing this line graph of how much I’ve loved the Beatles over the years. Paul and definitely Ringo, it’s a huge and very obvious uptick. George, it went up a little bit. And John, I'm sorry to say it went down a bit. I still love John Lennon an inordinately high amount compared to how much I love everything else except the ocean and the sky. I also don’t like Yoko. I hate Yoko. Her vibe is so bad. She’s like the opposite of Glyn Johns.


LIZ: I’d kind of like to know if she was the one who insisted on being there. Was it John who was like, “You have to sit next to me the whole entire time,” or was Yoko like, “I have to sit next to you the whole entire time”?


LJ: Or was it completely mutual.


LIZ:  The thing I liked most about Yoko always being with there was it made me so proud of Paul for being so chill about it. An opportunity for Paul to shine again.


LJ: I would definitely give Paul that 100 percent. He’s so reasonable.


LIZ: The part where he's like, “I have to compromise first for John to compromise.” That really impressed me. I feel like I just got to the point of being able to figure that kind of thing out like two years ago.


LJ: Is that the same part where he's like, “I know that if John had to choose between Yoko and the Beatles, he’d choose Yoko”? I hate that. I feel like John just made it that he had to choose. Everyone else was just like, “Yeah, I have a girlfriend. Whatever. It’s normal.”


LIZ: Yeah, it’s very teenage. It's very adolescent to be like, “My girlfriend has to sit right next to me every single second.”


LJ: It’s like, “Are you really so unsafe?” I wrote some notes down and one of my notes is that George feels genuinely kind of unsafe in the Beatles. When he quits and they want to go talk to him for the second time and Ringo's like, “He’s in Liverpool. We can't go talk to him.” And I was like, “Oh, that’s so sweet that he went back to Liverpool.” He's having a bad time at work so he went home to see his parents. And there's also a part in the first one where he says to Ringo, “It kind of feels like Lime Street Station.” I feel like he was having this regressive thing of really wanting to be back in Liverpool, in this cold and nasty situation.


LIZ: I mean George is definitely the most exasperating. But he’s so young!


LJ: For the first time I really saw that George is younger than the rest of them. Even when he’s happy and he’s succeeding, he just seems younger.


LIZ: I like how he keeps saying “I’m just gonna do me.” So ahead of his time.


LJ: Yeah, George, we know, over here in 2022. I’m also just doing me. He’s cute. He’s the cutest. I want the best for him. And I want the best for Paul, he’s perfect and can do no wrong. But going back to John – I just feel like his presence and Yoko’s presence…Yoko is 100 percent bad vibes. I don’t think she brings a great energy with her into the studio. I get that she’s like “It’s their thing, I’m not going to chime in every second.” But she just seems so over it. Wait, I'm going to make a long-winded point about the Brooklyn Nets. Right now they’re a really good team. They have like Kevin Durant and James Harden and Kyrie Irving as the big three. it’s like an NBA team supergroup kind of vibe. And I love Kyrie Irving, but he decided that he was going to be an anti-vaxxer and not get vaccinated. So the NBA were like, “Okay, cool. You’re not going to play.” He’s back now kind of, they rotate him to play away games in states that don’t have as strict vaccination rules as New York. But it's like even though the Brooklyn Nets are worse without him and he brings a lot of value to the team, you can kind of tell they’re having a better time when he's not there. And it's not because they don’t like him, it’s just because his presence in the situation takes up a lot of time and energy and space. And I feel like that sort of is what John Lennon is like throughout the entirety of the Get Back documentary. Even though he’s great, he’s John Lennon from the Beatles, we all love him, he brings a lot to the table. His being there just adds 25 percent more effort to everybody else's job. And I'm just kind of over that in the world. I just want people to be more like Paul McCartney and just be kind and do their job. And if you don't want to be like Paul McCartney, you can be like Ringo Starr and you can do even less. You don't even really have to do that much work. You can just be nice.


LIZ: With Ringo it seems like whatever they want him to do, he just does it and immediately gets it right, which is cool.


LJ: Yeah, he doesn’t fight. But I guess he also doesn’t have a ton of skin in the game. He just wants to do a good job and not piss anybody off. Which is really honorable.


LIZ: I love when Paul’s playing piano and Ringo’s like, “I could watch him play for hours.”


LJ: I know! He’s so lovely and so humble. George Harrison would never be able to say that about Paul.

LIZ: Julie Klausner said something about how if Let It Be were being made today, then George and John would just be on their phones the whole time. Which I think is a fun point.


LJ: Yoko would definitely be on her phone. I wish Yoko had a phone to be on.


LIZ: She kind of is on her phone, she’s reading the paper and reading letters.


LIZ: One thing that surprised me was I always thought George and John were kind of a team.


LJ: I feel like John kind of plays both sides. Maybe he would be more on George's side when they talked outside of work. But then in the studio he couldn’t help it.


LIZ: There’s that part where George is showing them “I Me Mine” and John is kind of giving him shit about it and George is like, “I don’t give a fuck.”


LJ: What does John say?


LIZ: I think he says something like, “Do you know what kind of songs we write?”


LJ: I don’t remember but that is so bitchy.


LIZ: I think that’s what happens, I could be misremembering.


LJ: I don't care. I never want to know, I just want to believe that’s what happened. That’s so rude. But like, I get it. That’s such a weird thing about Get Back, they’re just weird co-workers. When I was watching the first installment, I was having some work drama, so I really feel that situation. Of, like, “I don’t fucking care. I’m just gonna do me.”


LIZ: Yeah. And get cheese sauce on your cauliflower.

LIZ: There’s that part where Paul says something like “I'm scared of being the boss” and then - maybe it's not the same scene, but they have this whole conversation where George is like, “Things have been different ever since Mr. Epstein died.” That's such a weird way to talk about what’s happening to them. They’re just speaking out loud exactly what’s written in Beatles history books.


LJ: It's also weird that they're all clearly grieving Brian. That’s a huge weird thing to have happen to you. But I feel like they weren’t really given an appropriate amount of time or space to really deal with it. I guess they dealt with it by going to India.


LIZ: I guess that's the thing with them, everything happened in a real compressed span of time.


LJ: There’s that part where they’re showing them some set designs and John and Paul are like, “This is like Around the Beatles.” And they cut back to some dumb early Beatles performance and you’re like, “How do they remember that?” But it’s like, oh it’s just five years ago. I'm pretty connected to every single thing that was going on in my life five years ago.


LIZ: Yeah 1969 to 1960 would be like now to 2013. That wasn’t that long ago.


LJ: Nine years ago, we went to Martha's Vineyard. That is so recent.


LIZ: Nine years ago we wrote Blurred Lines.


LJ: Which I still think about once a week, I feel like.


LIZ: Yeah, Blurred Lines is so good.


LIZ: There’s that day when neither John nor George shows up to the studio and they're sitting around talking and Paul says, “And then there were two.” And there’s a close-up on Paul and it looks like he’s tearing up a little, but I couldn’t tell if he was actually crying or if I just wanted him to be crying.


LJ: I didn’t notice that. But I want Paul to be crying. There’s a lot of close-ups on Paul where you can see that he’s just going through something so different than what everybody else is going through. Which is that he likes this and he doesn’t want it to go away.


LIZ: That’s so sad.


LJ: I feel like, yeah, things seemed tense and uncomfortable in moments. Mostly when they were at Twickenham Studios, which of course things are going to feel bad there; it’s cold and weird. But I really feel like all of the stuff that was going on, it just doesn’t feel so insurmountably bad that they really needed to get out of this toxic situation. It seems like they could’ve gotten through it. If that’s what broke up the Beatles – like, really, guys? You deprived the entire world that really needed you forever, just because you were kind of weird and awkward in a studio for three weeks?


LIZ: And then once they once go to the other studio they seem like they're having a great time. And then Billy Preston comes in and they're having an even better time!


LJ: The best time!


LIZ: Billy Preston is really, like, whoa – what a presence.


LJ: What a good vibe. And also really good at music. He’s better at music than any of the Beatles. There’s that part where they have that little toy kind of like a Theremin, and Ringo or George is playing with it like, “What is this piece of garbage?” And then Billy Preston takes it and composes this cool, beautiful melody.


LIZ: It’s really sweet how George is talking about him in the beginning of the movie and he’s so excited about him, and then Billy Preston shows up and everyone loves him.  


LJ: What do you think Billy Preston's zodiac sign is? I just looked it up. I love it for Billy Preston.


LIZ: Is he a Leo?


LJ: No, he's a Virgo. His birthday is September 2nd. That’s a really cute birthday for Billy Preston. I have a friend who’s a very Virgo-y Virgo and his birthday is September 1st and he’s like, “I feel like that’s the perfect Virgo birthday.” Like, “First day of the month, I’m here. Let’s not complicate things.” And September 2nd is like that, only like, “I’m a little late. I’m Billy Preston and I’m an artist.”


LJ: Something I did in preparation for our conversation is I looked at all of the Beatles’ moon and rising signs.


LIZ: Paul’s moon is in Leo.


LJ: And he’s Virgo Rising. Which is cool for me because I'm a Virgo Moon and Leo Rising. So I like having that little connection with Paul. John is Aquarius Moon and Aries Rising. That stresses me out.


LIZ: Aries Rising seems apt in a way.


LJ: I wouldn’t want that.


LIZ: I wouldn’t either.


LJ: Wait, what are you?


LIZ: I'm Gemini Rising and Leo Moon. That's my astrological connection to Paul. 


LJ: George is a Pisces and then double Scorpio. Way to be so hot, George. Like, who has that? Give me a break. And Ringo also is a Leo Moon. And then he’s Cancer Sun and Pisces Rising. That’s a nice vibe. That’s a very gentle person right there. I guess the Leo Moon is why he likes acting. Like you.


LIZ: Yes. I’m a world-renowned actor.


LJ: How do you feel your Leo Moon?


LIZ: I feel it at karaoke. That’s when my Leo Moon really shines. And in that book The Only Astrology Book You’ll Ever Need there’s a part about how a Leo Moon can always be counted on to pick up the check, unless they're a Capricorn. Like, yeah - pretty much. That checks out. David Bowie’s also a Capricorn and Leo Moon.


LJ: I was bored at some point during a lockdown that has happened at some point in the past two years, and I looked up like which celebrities have my exact Cancer Sun, Virgo Moon, Leo Rising. You won’t believe who mine is; it’s so good and so awful. It's fucking Richard Branson.


LIZ: That makes sense.


LJ: I know, that’s the worst part.

LIZ: I liked Mal Evans a lot. He’s really cute. He’s so happy to bang the hammer in “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer.”


LJ: I would love to be like Mal Evans, just ‘cause everyone’s like “Oh, that person’s really reliable and kind.”


LIZ: I was thinking about when we did the “If Mad Men were The Beatles” post before the fourth season of Mad Men and –


LJ: Wait, don’t say! I don’t remember who Mal Evans was.


LIZ: Who do you think it was? It’s pretty obvious - when you think about early Mad Men, not later seasons.


LJ: It wasn’t Ken. Is it a man?


LIZ: Yes.


LJ: Does he work at Sterling Cooper?


LIZ: He does work there.


LJ: Is he nice?


LIZ: He was nice.


LJ: Oh, Harry Crane!


LIZ: Yes. God, who was Kenny? I mean Bob Cosgrove.


LJ: Oh, was he Maureen Cleave? That’s such a deep cut. I feel like someone was Maureen Cleave but it might’ve been Rachel Menken.


LIZ: I’m pretty sure Rachel was Yoko. We had weird ideas back then. But I love that Joan was George Martin.


LJ: Yeah, that’s really nuanced. It would’ve been smart of us to do that again. But we were too caught up in our recaps. Which was so fun. I feel like I’ll never care about a show that much again.


LIZ: No. And then there was that recap where the title of the post was “Peggy Olson’s Not in The Beatles,” but when we did the NoGoodForMe one, was she Linda? Or George?


LJ: I think we made her both Linda and George. Which isn’t accurate. Peggy’s Paul.


LIZ: I guess we made Roger Paul. Which he’s not.


LJ: Roger’s Derek Taylor. He’s the square who takes acid. John always has to be Don Draper I think. I was talking to Matt King the other day and we were fantasizing about a Mad Men reboot. And we got so deep into it that I kind of convinced myself that it was happening. Like, Matt Weiner’s semi-canceled, this is the one thing he could do to win us back.


LIZ: Why did he get canceled?


LJ: Because he created toxic workplace environments.


LIZ: Well you know what else was a toxic workplace?


LJ: Exactly.


LJ: I read this tweet the other day that was like, yeah, the Beatles wrote some of the best songs of all time, but we're all turning a blind eye to the fact that a bunch of their songs sound also like haunted carnivals.


LIZ: Oh. I missed that one.


LJ: At first I was like, “No – only ‘Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite’ sounds like a haunted carnival, and it was going for that.” But then I started thinking about it, and I was like, wow, there really are a lot. “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer” is a haunted carnival. “Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da,” kind of. “Bungalow Bill.” A case could really be made for like half of the White Album. I guess the Abbey Road medley is kind of haunted carnival.


LIZ: I listened to Abbey Road all the way through the night before my birthday and it was really satisfying. I hadn’t done that in a really long time. I love the part in the movie where Paul’s playing “Carry That Weight” on the piano and he says, ‘I thought this could be a song for Ringo!”


LJ: Does Ringo sing it?


LIZ: One bit of trivia I know is that it's the only time in the whole Beatles catalog where they all sing together.


LJ: That's a cute bit of trivia. I like when they ask Ringo if he liked India and he says, “No, not really.”


LIZ: When Paul's talking about the footage of India that he was looking at and George says his thing, I couldn't tell, like, does that bother Paul?


LJ: Yeah, I think it bothered Paul. Paul’s like, “Okay, cool, thanks for cutting me down to size.” I wrote that Substack about that moment and some stranger commented on it and said, “I have a point about this situation from George's perspective, but I'll only share it with you if you're comfortable with that.” Which I was like, “Whoa, okay, thanks for respecting me. I wrote this in like 20 minutes after going for a run, I’m not tied to these words. Go for it.” And then this person wrote me the best thing I've ever read, I'm gonna read it to you: Your point about him using his spiritual learning in an aggressive manner is a really interesting one I hadn't considered before, and I agree Paul's feelings and his experience were totally valid. However, I really felt for George in that moment. After everything that had happened in the last week, he was once again in a situation where it seemed Paul was trying to bond with John at George's expense. They were laughing about a trip which meant a lot to him in front of both the crew making this film and potentially the audience watching it, and the whole Maharishi situation had already caused a hard time for him. I get where Paul was coming from, but it wasn’t the appropriate time to make that remark, in my opinion. It was also pretty hypocritical since the Beatles were being filmed and therefore not actually being themselves then either, which I think is also what George is getting at. With him only being 25 on the verge of 26 and at the height of his resentment, I relate to feeling the need to speak up and perhaps letting his emotions get the better of him. Like, what? That is so smart and cool and I never would have thought of that. Like, did the ghost of George Harrison somehow leave me a comment?


LIZ: Yeah I totally hadn’t thought of it that way.


LJ: Paul and John are kind of ganging up on George and making fun of something that meant a lot to him, on film. Although I do really relate to what Paul was saying, having had recent experiences of being in those meditation-retreat, super-spiritual, verging-on-religious situations. It's like, OK, we get it, there is no self. But you feel kind of backed up against a wall, like you really don’t have a voice in that situation. And you’re supposed to be so loving and welcoming and supportive. But you also just feel you’re really on someone else’s turf.


LIZ: Another George thing is I hadn’t listened to “Old Brown Shoe” in so long and I was like, “Oh my god, it’s so good.”


LJ: I like when they call it George's rocker.


LIZ: Why didn’t they put it on Let It Be?


LJ: ‘Cause they released it as a B-side, ‘cause it was too good for shitty Let It Be. George has a lot of good songs that were B-sides. Like “It’s All Too Much.” Seeing the crap they were playing in Get Back, the fact that they’d written “It’s All Too Much” a year before, it’s like, “Guys, step it up.”


LIZ: I like when John keeps doing that same joke over and over again about “Your hosts for this evening, The Rolling Stones.” That’s one of the things that made me understand him more. I was like, “Yeah, I relate to totally just running a joke into the ground.” That really humanized him for me.


LJ: My favorite John part is when he said he was late because he was mistreating his body. He’s like “Oh, I was stoned and high. I was up all night watching films.” And you're just like, wow, that’s what some scrub I had a bad experience dating would do. Like, “Oh, I was smoking weed and I got some coke and it was 5 a.m. and I was just watching this Korean film” and you’re just like SHUT UP.


LIZ: And then Paul says, “Oh, we don’t need that on film, Mr. Lennon.”


LJ: You know what part I think is really cool? When John is playing some blues song, and then Paul is reading the article about them. If I was a psychoanalyst, I’d really like hone in on that moment, like “That’s how they're both coping with this situation in different ways.”


LIZ: Yeah they really hated that article, by Housego. Which is funny because there must have been articles like that all the time.


LJ: Housego is the one who wrote them in the newspaper that they read the most frequently. And also had the last name “Housego.”

LIZ: During the rooftop concert, I liked all the people-on-the-street interviews, or some of them anyway. My favorite was the older man who's like, “The Beatles are cracking! They have a lovely crowd.”


LJ: I like that young hotshot in the car, in the backseat but the wrong way around. He’s like, “I’m just some rich guy. This is nothing to me but, yeah, I like it.”


LJ: I felt weirdly bad for the cops.


LIZ: Did you? I didn’t really.


LJ: I just felt like they were so young and brainwashed and I don't feel like they really believed in what they were saying or what they had to do. They were just doing it because it was their job and probably inside of themselves, their inner children were probably dying and just so happy and excited that the Beatles are playing on a rooftop. I thought that was kind of tragic. 


LIZ: I didn’t think of it that way, but that tracks.


LJ: Yeah, I really had their backs. I hated how much the rooftop concert was in it. I was like, “I can’t listen to ‘Don’t Let Me Down’ another time.” That song in particular, I feel like I won't be able to listen to for another five years. “Get Back” and “Don’t Let Me Down” got the most play from start to finish. And “Two of Us.”


LIZ: Yeah, a lot of “Two of Us.”


LJ: How do you feel about that Beatles song?


LIZ: It was never a fave, but I was always in support of it existing. A nice little Paul-and-Linda song. But yeah, it definitely wears on you after the 87th time. And there's the part where they're singing it and they're both gritting their teeth the whole time. Which was funny but I was also like, “Oh my god, this fucking song.”


LJ: It’s like, “We get it, Paul, you don’t need to be so committed to the bit.” If you had the comic genius of John Lennon, you’d know to just do one verse. But no.


LIZ: Speaking of committing to the bit, I like when they do that version of “Get Back” that’s all about immigration policy, “Commonwealth,” and John does the stuffy old British lady accent after every line. He really didn’t quit on that.


LJ: But he’s funnier than Paul. He gets away with it.


LIZ: The part after George leaves and Yoko gets on the mike and they do that crazy freakout thing - I liked that a lot, I liked that Paul was so into it.


LJ: That’s the right way to think about Yoko, as a tool for making Paul seem better. He does have a weirdly good attitude about Yoko.


LJ: Let’s talk about Linda. Linda has a beautiful speaking voice. 


LIZ: She does. She’s a breath of fresh air.


LJ: There’s one part where she’s like, “Oh, we were looking at Help! and A Hard Day's Night last night.” First of all, cool that she says “looking at.” But that was a real window into what it's like to date Paul McCartney. “Like, ‘Let’s watch A Hard Day’s Night, in 1969!” And you’re like, “Okay, whatever, I’m dating Paul McCartney. I can do this.”


LIZ: I like when there’s the Hare Krishnas that George brought to Twickenham and John’s like, “Who’s that little old man?” It’s cute that they’re into A Hard Day’s Night.


LJ: I feel like George was like, “I'm going to be cool like John, I'm gonna bring the Hare Krishnas.” And then they only came for one day and everyone’s like “Yeah, that didn’t really work for us. We hated that.”


LIZ: There's a part where the band is playing and Linda and Yoko are talking - I really want to know what they're saying to each other. Like, what did Linda and Yoko talk about? 


LJ: I feel like it was pretty surface. I feel like if I were Linda in that situation, I would be like, “I don't want to bond with Yoko right now.” But I guess if I were Yoko, I'd be like, “I don't want to bond with this boring rich American woman.” I like how Pattie Harrison shows up for one scene and looks amazing and has the most beautiful purse I’ve ever seen in my life. She just comes in and whispers something in George’s ear and she’s gone as quick as she came. I don’t like her, but she has the right attitude about having a Beatles boyfriend, husband, partner, whatever.


LIZ: I have some idea that Paul McCartney was very fond of Mo. I'm basing it on like two tiny, split-second interactions, but it seems like he's really on board with Maureen Starkey.


LJ: Like in a sexual way?


LIZ: No, just like, “Yeah, that's Ringo's girl.” I just want it to be true.



LIZ: I wish Paul had brought Martha to the studio. Assuming that Martha was alive then.


LJ: I think Martha lived into Wings days. But maybe Martha was bad. Maybe it would’ve been problematic and she would've chewed on wires. 


LIZ: She would’ve been wreaking havoc. She was a big dog.


LJ: But Get Back could’ve used a dog.


LJ:  I had this revelation on Christmas Eve night. I was drunk and made my dad watch Get Back with me. And in my head I had this personal revelation that I'll never be able to know in the way I knew it in that moment, but I feel like the lyric “Get back to where you once belonged” is Paul singing to the Beatles. I feel like he may not even really know that. He probably knows it now. But I think it came about in a subconscious way. I feel like that's the theme of this whole era and why Paul McCartney is on such a different journey. He just really wants the Beatles to get back to where they once belonged. And they’re like, “No. We won’t.”


LIZ: I feel like they all seem pretty into it at the rooftop concert. I like when Mal Evans comes up with the cops and he turns down the P.A. and then George turns it back up again. I was like, “Yeah, George.”


LJ: I just remembered that Mal died because the cops shot him.


LIZ: I knew he died tragically, but I didn't know that’s what happened.


LJ: It was. But yeah, he's such a good person to have to go down and negotiate with the stupid 20-year-old cops.


LIZ: The day that Mike Nesmith died, it really hit me that Paul McCartney’s going to die someday.


LJ: I hate when I think about how Paul McCartney’s going to die someday. I really hate the way people react to celebrity death. I feel like I need to work through how negative my reaction to other people reacting to celebrity deaths is. I get so worked up about it. It is tacky and it is performative, but I feel like I don't give other people the space they need to grieve the death of artist that meant something to them. I really have to sort that out before Paul McCartney dies. Because I don’t want to hear everyone suddenly becoming a fucking Paul McCartney fan. I know who was and who wasn’t. I think I’ll be very upset by like, “Oh my ex co-worker is so sad suddenly.” And also, when’s that going to happen? He’s old.


LIZ: But he seems like he's in good shape.


LJ: He seems like he's in really good shape. Like almost too good. Like, chill out. This year he’s gonna turn 80. He could just live to be 103 and we’d have 23 more years of Paul McCartney. That almost feels like too much.


LIZ: Watching Get Back I was like, “How could you not think Paul is the greatest?” But then I saw I saw a picture of him in 1986 and I was like, “Oh yeah – right.”


LJ: Yeah, he was tacky for a while.


LIZ: But he bounced back.


LJ: I was watching the Sparks documentary, and I like that he impersonated Ron Mael in a music video from the ‘80s. There’s a video for some irrelevant song from like 1982, where he dresses up as like a bunch of different famous rock musicians. He dresses up as Buddy Holly and Elvis and his young self. But then he also dress up as Ron Mael from Sparks. Ron Mael is not that famous and he never was.


LJ: I feel like before we end our conversation, we need to talk about how much we love Paul McCartney. That’s the throughline of everything we’ve been saying, that Paul is the obvious hero. Like, I feel like if God came down to Earth and was like, “Hey, like, you're a pretty big Beatles fan, who was right in the Beatles?” And I’d be like, “Paul McCartney. He was right. Let it be known. That is objectively true. He was the best one." He had a really good work ethic, a frighteningly good work ethic for being 26-years-old. He just wanted the thing to get done. There’s no ego about it. He’s just like, “This is our job. And we have this annoying director.” Who, by the way, is so annoying.


LIZ: He’s the worst. I love the part where he's suggesting that they do the show at a hospital for sick kids and there’s this close-up on John's face and he’s just like, FUCK MY LIFE. And then Paul makes that joke about, “Yeah, there's a girl who can't walk, but then when she sees John she can walk again,” and John’s face breaks into this big smile. That was cute.


LJ: See, Paul knows how to mitigate an awkward situation. The only time I like Michael Lindsay-Hogg is when they're talking about something unrelated and he’s like “Just as long as I look thin.”


LIZ: The part where Paul writes “Get Back,” that was something I’d heard 8 million people talking about online, but then when it happened it was like, “That really was impressive as everyone said it would be.”


LJ: I didn’t hear anyone talking about it. I was like completely blank when I watched that happen. It’s crazy, you never get to see that happen. 


LIZ: It's crazy that he just came up with the line, “Thought she was a woman, but she was another man.”


LJ: I know, how did that just show up in his head? I like when he's having misgivings about whether Loretta's last name should be Marsh. He’s like, “That's not very nice.” There’s another part soon after that I think about so much where Mal Evans is doing his sad pathetic job of having to transcribe their lyrics and he’s like, “What's that word?” And John Lennon's like “Marrrsh.” Like, yeah, change it, guys. It’s awful.


LIZ: I love all their toast and wine and tea and marmalade.


LJ: I love how often they casually drink white wine at the studio. I think it’s Riesling. Because there's a story about how the weird sound effects at the beginning of “Long, Long, Long” is there was a bottle of Blue Nun on the piano and it started vibrating. So maybe that was their vibe, they just liked to have a bottle of cheap Riesling.


LJ: What is your favorite outfit of the entire Get Back?


LIZ: I like the day when they were all wearing green and Paul eats a cupcake. I like Paul’s sweater when he writes “Get Back.”


LJ: He’s also having a good hair day the day he writes “Get Back.”


LIZ: His hair’s pretty luscious and shiny throughout the whole movie. I like when Ringo’s wearing his pink button down and jeans.


LJ: That might be my number-one fit of the whole documentary. John looks really good that day too in his striped shirt. And Paul’s wearing his orange sweater.


LIZ: I love George’s boots.


LJ: I love Paul’s “Bassman” sticker.


LJ: There’s one point where like George is asking someone, “Oh, can you bring me some shoes? I just want a pair of black plain shoes, size eight and a half.” And then a couple of days later, he's wearing them. And you're just like, “Wow, he’s in the Beatles. He doesn’t have to go to the store.” He wears Converse All-Stars a couple times and he looks really good in them. He just looks really good. Paul’s a little unkempt.


LIZ: But he looks healthy and happy. He looks great at the rooftop concert. I like his little suit.


LJ: I think he looks the worst of the four. He looks happy though. I think John looks really good on their rooftop concert. I love John’s fur coat. John looks so cool the entire movie. 


LIZ: I was listening to some podcast and these guys were talking about the part where they’re leaving the rooftop and John asks Yoko what's wrong, and the podcast dude's take on that was “Yoko’s scared John’s going to leave her for the Beatles, and John senses that.” Like – that seems like kind of a reach, but all right.


LJ: Maybe Yoko just shouldn’t have gone to the rooftop concert. But I guess John wanted emotional support. But was it so hard, John? When I was younger, I saw all of their behavior as being more normal, because I didn't realize how weird it was to be in the Beatles. When I was like 23, I just took the way the Beatles behaved at face value. Now I’m 36 and have been working really hard for a really long time and I'm sitting in my okay apartment in the middle of a global pandemic, and I just don't understand why it was so difficult for them. I guess you're just in the situation you're in. But I do feel as though John Lennon and George Harrison took being in the Beatles for granted.


LIZ: I get George, because it seems like he really was not taken very seriously by them. And that must have been frustrating. He had really good songs and he had shit to say.


LJ: He does bust out “All Things Must Pass,” and it’s so much better than like “Dig a Pony.”


LIZ: But I also get if you're John and you meet Yoko and you're like, “Oh, there's this whole other thing that I could be doing.”


LJ: Like what?


LIZ: Like weird, Yoko-y, avant-garde shit.


LJ: But he wasn’t that avant-garde. John just hated every situation and that’s kind of the beauty of John. He was just not into the Beatles music. He’s like, “I hate the avant-garde, I’m just gonna make my gritty rock-and-roll tunes. All I care about is what’s real.”


LIZ: I liked hearing Paul sing “Gimme Some Truth.”


LJ: I also can’t believe they rejected “Gimme Some Truth.”


LIZ: “Let’s just do ‘One After 909’ instead.”


LJ: “This song we deemed not good enough when we were 17-years-old.”


LIZ: They made some weird moves.


LJ: But I kind of like “One After 909.”


LIZ: It’s a bop.


LJ: I never press forward on “One After 909.” But I’m never like, “Ooh, you know what my vibe is right now?”


LIZ: I wish “Dig It” went on for like 10 more minutes. I like the part where they're kind of like doing “Dig It” and John is just saying the names of the Beatles songs for fucking ever.


LJ: I love that part. It’s the songs that are on Let It Be. They should’ve just put that on the album as track one. That’s a good idea, Laura. It would’ve been Sgt. Pepper kind of vibe, like we're introducing the album you’re listening to.


LIZ: Do we have any closing remarks?


LJ: I think Paul McCartney was in the right the whole time. Except...in the first one, when there’s that phone conversation with him and John, I feel like John makes some solid anti-Paul points. He’s talking about how Paul is a bit of a control freak and asking everyone to play things the way he wants them to be played, and Paul needs to chill and let George play the way George wants to play.


LIZ: The part between George and Paul that’s such a big moment in the movie Let It Be, where Paul's like, “I feel like I'm annoying you” and George says “You don’t annoy me anymore” – in the context of this movie, it didn’t seem that dramatic. It just seemed like a conversation they were having.


LJ: I think it’s weird that George says “You don't annoy me anymore.”


LIZ: I like it. I would like to say it to somebody someday.


LJ: It’s really passive-aggressive.


LIZ: Yeah - that’s why I like it. It reminds me of Don Draper telling Ginsberg, “I don’t think about you at all.”


LJ: I feel like...it’s mean. I put that in my little pouch of times when I feel George is being spiritually bankrupt and he needs to come off his high horse and be a little more loving.


LIZ: Fair.


LJ: Can’t have it both ways, George. Do you want to be passive aggressive, or do you want to love God and see God in Paul McCartney and love him? Which is it?


LIZ: I wonder if they were ever bros.


LJ: Like in the future?


LIZ: Yeah, future bros. Like in 1987. They don’t seem like they’re all about each other in the Anthology stuff.


LJ: They’re maybe the ones who have the least in common of the whole Beatles. I feel George likes Paul less than Paul likes George. That’s too bad, George. Because I think Paul’s pretty great.


LJ: I think we should pick a Spirit Beatles Song for 2022. And we have to really commit to it.


LIZ: Well for as much as this movie made me not want to hear “Two of Us” again for a very long time, it made me love “The Long and Winding Road” more than I ever did before. I’m not picking that, but I love when Mal is helping Paul with the lyrics and Paul says something like “There's enough obstacles without putting them in the song.” I thought that was a good point.


LJ: I forgot to say the most important thing of all, which is it’s the coolest thing of all time when he says “To wander aimlessly is very unswinging.” Can we have that be the name of the post? I want that to be the name of everything I ever do. I want to put that on my gravestone. And Paul’s gravestone.


LJ: I’m torn between between “Here Comes the Sun” and “I Me Mine” for my Spirit Beatles Song. I’ve just been in a negative place lately so I feel like “Here Comes the Sun” could be a good vibe for me. Can I have both of them?


LIZ: Yes. I’ll allow it.


LJ: Thanks.


LIZ: I don’t know mine. “You Know My Name, Look Up the Number.”


LJ: That’s really bad. What about “The Word”?


LIZ: That doesn’t resonate. I’ve been into “The Ballad of John & Yoko” lately.


LJ: Oh, pick that. You seem to be in a healthy relationship, it’s a good vibe. You like John more than you did before you watched Get Back. Oh and it’s an A-side with your new favorite, “Old Brown Shoe”! That’s your vibe. You’re that whole single. And I’m the two sides of George Harrison as my 2022 life concept. Finally, after all these years, I’ve realized how much I love Paul McCartney. But it’s not time for me to fully embody that love. Though I do feel like, in my heart, I am the John Lennon of Strawberry Fields Whatever, forever. That’s the biggest realization that I had from watching Get Back. These are my closing statements: in the context of us, I’ll always be the John. But in the world, I am not a John anymore. And that’s crazy, but I just have to love it about myself and accept it. I’m not the weird rebel who’s trying to make things be fucked up, I’m the person who’s trying to make everything go smoothly for everybody else. And that’s kind of beautiful. I might not even be the Paul. I might be the Glyn Johns. I’m a big deal in other arenas of my life.


LIZ: What a nice revelation. I don’t know who I’ll be. Maybe Heather McCartney.


LJ: You can be Linda. Let’s have a year of being sub-Beatles and then we’ll go back to being Beatles when we reconvene in 2023.


LIZ: Perfect. That's it.