Elvis swiveled right past me. I was too young to know what the sexuality of the hips meant. It just seemed silly, Elvis the Pelvis, almost like it was a schoolyard taunt. He looked like a greaser, a tough guy, too good looking, too much like older boys in my town who were high school heroes and secret bullies. I liked some of Elvis’ songs, I remember listening to "Return to Sender" endlessly, but his image was all wrong for me. He went into the army and made stupid movies. Some kids in my neighborhood liked him – my best friend Danny, who had loved King Creole, mostly for the boxing. Me, I kept Elvis at arms length. In later years I’d come to love and recognize his musical mastery, the magical Sun recordings, the flawless voice, but then, I was in need of a hero, and he wasn’t it.
Instead I got four. They arrived, impossibly new and nothing like anything before them, like they’d come at this time to speak to me directly, telling me that life was full of possibility, exuberance, cheer. The message was, as "She Loves You" told, you could get the girl and help your friend get his girl too. The lyrics of “I Should Have Known Better” shouted “This could only happen to me! Cant you see?!” Life was a revelation, unique to the individual.
My friend Alan Shelton and I used to ‘play’ Beatles, down in his cellar, in a little blocked-off room that was his private area. We pretended to be The Beatles the way we used to pretend to be army soldiers or cowboy gunfighters. A significant paradigm shift, no imaginary guns anymore, now it was imaginary guitars. We would adopt the persona of one of the Beatles – I usually got to choose who I wanted to be first – it would always be either John or Paul. We would act out scenarios which generally involved running away from screaming girls, getting ready to play a concert, talking about writing new songs, (since we weren’t going to actually try to write one) and relaxing with all our well earned money, having food sent in, having someone change the strings on our guitars for us.
An odd adult form of a related sort of role play exists unto today, in the phenomena known as Beatle fan fiction, where fans write about themselves entering into the lives of one of more than one of the Beatles. It is often women fans, and they don’t write themselves into the current time – they don’t imagine themselves in a relationship with the 64 year old Paul – they write themselves into the lives of the Beatles from 1963 to 1967 thereabouts, at The Beatles height. The stories often take the form of something like a romance novel, some sexually explicit, with one of the Beatles as the love interest.