Five of the most memorable minutes of my life....
I was in a Los Angeles restaurant for lunch many years ago with the love of my life and who should walk in and sit quite close to my table but Ringo, his missus and a few other people; I actually didn't notice him until I heard this Scouse accent and lots of laughter from the table. I was just awestruck that I was in the same room as him and, believe me, I'm not the kind of guy to hero worship people; my partner was quite stunned at how flustered I was. For quite a long time, heart racing, I thought about going over to shake hands with him but then several random people started dropping by the table and interrupting his meal and I felt sorry for him, though he was quite charming in dealing with it all. I finally thought "Nah, give the guy some peace and quiet; however I try to deal with it, I'll just look like another thoughtless gawker. I'll just nod and wave on the way out and say something like "Nice to see another Scouser in LA".
About half an hour later, I went to the toilet and, as I came back out, he was walking in. I smiled at him and said, "This might be the only place you'll get some peace and quite, Mr Starkey". He spotted my accent straight away and asked me what part of Liverpool I was from, talked about a friend he'd had in Walton, I mentioned that a friend's dad had booked The Beatles for an early gig in Litherland Town Hall and he vaguely remembered the gig. Another guy brushed past us to get into the toilets and I said something like "Ah, well, I'll leave you in peace" but he just touched me on the arm and said "No, we're good, it's nice to catch up" and we chatted a bit more about what I was doing in LA and for a living. He asked me if I ever missed Liverpool. I told him that I had no-one back there still living I cared about and that, from occasionally chatting with other Scousers I met, it had all changed way beyond recognition anyway. He said that that was true but, all the same, it was the city that had made us what we were. I agreed with him and then one of his friends came up and said that they were all leaving. Ringo grinned at me and said he'd better get into the toilet before he wet himself and he shook my hand, patted me on the shoulder and went in.
I went back to my table and told my partner about it; she thought it was incredibly funny because I was so pleased and proud and starstruck. As Ringo came back out and headed to his table to pick up something or other, he gave me the thumbs up and then left...probably with his missus saying "Who was that bloke you gave the thumbs up to?"
He loves his city; it's just not his home any more. Those of us who have a great deal of distance from Liverpool in time and space don't have the fierce pride in it that those still living there do. But that doesn't mean that we are dissing it in saying that there's nothing there that we miss. And we're not so quick to anger if there is some kind of overt or implied criticism of the city.
So......the punchline to the joke.......
"Eh, are you saying there's something wrong with our f***n light bulbs, mate? You got something against Scouse light bulbs mate? Tell, you what, mate, our light bulbs are the best in the f***n world, mate. An' another thing......"
Well said Michaelmace.
You can always count on Americans to do the right thing - after they've tried everything else.
I gotta say, I've sort of adopted Wales, my heart is here.
I love Liverpool because its where I was born and raised and I still come back quite a lot, but I just can't seem to get as excited talking about it as I do when someone asks me about the Valleys or the Gower, because I don't 'know' it.
My brother and I are poles apart, he still has his canny farm accent, I have a cheshire / scouse / welsh valley accent.
If someone asked me what I miss about Liverpool, I'd have to say 'the people' because from when I lived there nothing's the same, so I cant miss anything else.
The maisonettes in canny farm have long since been flattened. Even Clayton square the way 'I' remember it with the old Victorian buildings has all gone, when I was a kid I used to feed the feral cats there, and my mates and I would laugh cos I said every time without fail, 'this is my square cos its got my name on it!' Clayton square had a character all of its own, and now, to me its just shops.
Penny Lane records in Bold Street held a very special place in my heart and that's gone, and then they did the unthinkable they closed Quiggins .
Maybe Ringo did, maybe Ringo didn't mean to be obnoxious about Liverpool, I don't know I didn't hear the interview. But in a way I can understand about him not missing anything about Liverpool, because maybe just like me, everything he remembers about Liverpool has gone?
But the people are still the same, still the salt of the earth, and that's what I miss, cos you don't find that in many places, only certain parts of Wales and Liverpool. (When i'm travelling there is still a little bit of scouse lilt to my voice I guess, and every one always says, "Scousers are lovely people)
"There are places I remember
All my life though some have changed
Some forever not for better
Some have gone and some remain
All these places have their moments
With lovers and friends I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life I've loved them all"
What I can say about Liverpool is this, New Liverpool looks fabulous! I was at spaceport over the river having a coffee a few months back and looking at the New Liverpool skyline and I thought to myself 'wow' its getting on par with New York with all those skyscrapers! But its not 'my' Liverpool, the Liverpool of my childhood, its 'your' Liverpool now, and its a place for you to be proud of.
The Ringo Kid
Tried to be a smart arse,,,,but the clown come unstuck,,,,,Ross himself was ambarrased,,,,and lets face it he likes to put the boot in about us scousers himself,,(pwat)
Ringo,,,or better known as,,Big Nose,, should crawl back under the toad stool or were ever he resides these days,,
any way,,,The Big Guy himself,,Macca,,you know muccas x,,,,done us proud the way he spoke about the pool,,,,,,
All in all,,,,,Dingo as gone awol,,,,,,,and his house got knocked down ?
I have a saying,,,,and i think its suits us scousers down to the ground..
Be Mine Enemy But Respect Me.