February 12, 2014
The Beatles Are Coming!

All right, all right, if you insist. Hereís where I was when the Beatles came to America 50 years ago. I was on the city desk of The Washington Post, dimly aware that mass hysteria had been unleashed on the land by the recent appearances of some British rock group on the Ed Sullivan Show. Next they were coming to Washington and I caught the assignment. It did me no good to point out that my taste in music ran to Rosemary Clooney and Bing Crosby. With the Beatles I would be in way over my head, or under it, depending on your point of view.

So I picked up the phone and asked the operator if the paper had been getting many calls about that nightís concert at the Washington Coliseum. Swamped, huh? Okay, the next teenybopper who calls, pass her along to me. I had barely hung up the phone when it rang.

I explained to the girl, call her Sally, that I needed an expert consultant to inform my coverage of tonightís concert. And I had a couple of press passes and she could meet me at the paper, so how about it? After mulling my proposition over for a nanosecond, she agreed.

The resulting story is below, probably savagely shortened by some cretin on the copy desk. Youíll notice that the concert itself goes unmentioned. This is because it went unheard, lost to the memory of man under the squeals and screams of a thousand Sallys.


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Posted by Jerome Doolittle at February 12, 2014 06:03 PM
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