Classic: When I’m sixty-four

When I’m sixty-four

It is the summer of ‘67 and the Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album songs smothered the many classic hits released during that famous summer of love. Now some fifty years later one Lennon and McCartney tune rings out to grab me.

When I get older losing my hair ….

I am growing a beard – happenstance at best – I haven’t shaved in a week – I attempt to keep it neat. I told my wife that it’s in response to NBC4’s men’s effort to stop shaving until the Caps win the Stanley Cup. However, I am also considering not shaving all summer and fall until either the Orioles or the Nats win the World Series. That could be a big extended investment in time (with little effort) with scratchiness, perhaps hunger and loneliness to boot. Think Lonely Hearts.

I favor the Jimmy Kimmel beard look. I think I could do that. Then there is that Fixer/Inspector look of Felicia Florick’s love interest from The Good Wife. A possibility – he certainly has more grey streaks. Or maybe I can hold out to create the Dos Equis, Most Interesting Man in the World white beard look. But to no avail – he is being retired for a more youthful spokesperson look. Classic.

Many years from now …

I have shaved nearly every day since puberty. While in college I went with the crowd growing a mustache foo Manchu and a curly head of black hair. Think Bradley Cooper in the movie American Hustle type hair with Christian Bale mustache and glasses. It’s that type of look and clothes from the 70’s. We never bring out the wedding album – if we do my daughter always turns away in disgust at the group pictures – and quizzes her mom – “what did you see in him?” Classic.

Would you lock the door …

Truth is I traveled a lot in between that wedding year and retiring – coming home late from Greensboro or Memphis or some West Coast city. I had looked traveled scruffy and I lost all that 70’s facial hair but kept all the black and slowly graying strands of hair on my head. Presentation was everything – so I tried my best to be sharp. Shave every day. Corporate.

I could be handy, mending a fuse …

I continued to shave until last week’s break in the photo action. You see for the freelance photography gigs I still need to look sharp – not so artsy – I just need to keep it young for both the clients and the subjects. I do a lot of in-school work and high school sports – so they don’t need to see a hippy type from the 70’s with a 300mm lens, a granpa, taking their picture. Look sharp and stay forever young (think about the song lyrics from Rod Stewart or Alphaville or Jay-Z’s version’s). Classics.

Who could ask for more …

Come on, really I have not done this in along time – facial hair that is. I admit it when I walk into a stadium or auditorium and it’s Eminem’s 2002 hit Lose Yourself blaring on the speakers pumping up the home team and crowd and you become young again. So I bet not many guys my age know, at least hum, all the words to this song sans the hip-hop hoodie. It could be me, on the sidelines with cameras in that hoodie with facial hair – now that would be a scary sight me bopping out to a song from a generation ago. I listen to a variety of music channels on my Sirius/XM but give me the classics, like all those new Who songs that populate TV commercials, dramas and sitcoms. BTW, all the Who cast are clean-shaven now. Corporate.

Indicate precisely what you mean to say …

Who are you
? (Who, 1996). I was expecting that question from my mom when I stopped by this week to check in on her.

She looked at me and asked, “Are you growing a beard?”

“Yes, gonna grow it until the Caps lose.”

“Oh, just like the guys on NBC4.”

Yep, she “Won’t Get Fooled Again” – as she had supplied the home for that 70’s guy until he got married.

See “Many years from now” above.

Will you still need me, Will you still feed me ….

This whole not shaving thing has become a true test of a song from the summer of love. My wife looked at me after I reasoned with my NBC4 Cap’s challenge and she said go ahead have fun, grow it, but “I won’t go out to dinner with you looking like that on Saturday night.”


When I am sixty-four …

This Saturday.


Back in ‘67 the tops of the pops was a compilation of songs from The Jefferson Airplane, The Box Tops, The Doors, The Supremes, all of Motown and the latest from the British Invasion groups. The Beatles Sgt. Pepper Album was in truth partly inspired and in response to Brian Wilson’s Beach Boys album of 1966 Pet Sounds. The Beatles crushed it.

What did most of this 60’s stuff have in common, visually – lots of facial and big hair. Not Corporate.

The Lennon-McCartney tune When I am sixty-four was written about aging by McCartney when he was 16. It was about growing old together, as he saw in his father who was approaching that age.

The National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress preserved both Pets Sounds and Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. Rolling Stone Magazine lists these two albums as the two top of 500 Greatest Albums of All Times. Greatest 500 Albums

I wrote sixty-four off so long ago as cute, as in never-never land cute. At the time it may have made me think of grandparents and parents growing older. However, little did I think that song would be so close and relevant some 50 years later.

Wouldn’t it be nice if we were older….