I’ve failed to mention a very notable anniversary, but it wasn’t on purpose. I haven’t posted about the 40th anniversary of the Summer of Love yet simply because I wasn’t around yet to experience it for myself. No colorful tales about drinking acid-spiked punch and freaking out naked in the neighbor’s yard, running away to San Francisco with the hippie boy of my dreams, or sneaking backstage at a Who concert. But I do have something residing in my bedroom that can help even the youngest (or oldest) of souls bring back that loving feeling. It’s an old article reprinted in a Beatles book that instructs you on how to be a beautiful person. It was originally printed in 1967 or 1968 in a UK publication called Disc and Music Echo alongside a picture of Paul McCartney and then-girlfriend Jane Asher. Now pay attention. It’s very profound:
This is how it feels to be a beautiful person
by Penny Valentine
Beautiful people have existed for years. It’s nothing to do with what you look like or the clothes you wear. It’s what goes on in your mind and your approach to life.
Beautiful people, as a phrase, has come into the foreground today because of the flower movement, the emergence of the hippies, Sgt. Pepper and the Beatles and Scott McKenzie’s “San Francisco.”
But even the hippiest hippy, surely, has harboured some pretty evil thoughts and some pretty anti-feelings. Has been unkind, insensitive, thoughtless. Not noticed things around him.
It’s been borrowed by the hippies. But even if you don’t wear kaftans, beads, bells and granny glasses take heart, you can STILL be a beautiful person. Read on and find out how.
You are beautiful if you:
• Like dancing on cool grass in your bare feet (even if there are no pipes of Pan and the grass is in your own back garden);
• Read Professor Tolkein’s “The Hobbit” or “Lord of the Rings” and love Bilbo Baggins;
• Have watched the dawn come up and actually realized what was happening;
• Love your dog, the postman, the blind man who sells matches on the corner, your neighbors (even when they bang on the wall when you put Sgt. Pepper on full volume);
• Dislike war, the Government, anti-people;
• Think the countryside is a gas and ought to stay wild;
• Enjoy splashing through the rain, laughing, children, colours, poetry, people;
• Refuse to tread on ants, spiders and beetles;
• Know where “Granny Takes A Trip” is;
• Give a daisy to the policeman who tells you your party is too noisy, drags you away from Wanstead Flats when you are merely admiring the view or pulls you feet first up a dirty road to a waiting van during a sit-down protest
• Harbour a burning desire to visit Mexico or India
I must admit I’m lacking in a lot of these areas. I kill spiders, I hate (bratty) kids, and Mexico and India are two countries I have absolutely no desire to visit. Not a Hobbit fan, either. But I’m totally down with loving animals, the outdoors, and hating the war. Hope that at least makes me...a passable person.