Thursday, May 3, 2012

In search of posters

I think this story really shows how kind Paul and Linda could be to their fans.   It is from the July 1980 issue of the fanzine, "With a little help from my friends." It was written by Mary Kara and Beth Sanders.

We had left the U.S. on May 17th, the same day Paul was to be on Saturday Night Live from London.  All of our friends thought that we’d get to see him since we’d be arriving a few hours after the telecast.  However, being pessimists, we doubted we’d see Paul since for 3 years in a row we’d been to England and had no luck.  Seems as if he knew we were coming so he left!  Yet every once in a while I’d look and Beth and say, “Do you think we’ll see him this time?”  Ah!  That thing called hope.  We have both loved the Beatles since we were 14 and 15 and now around 30 years of age, we figured it was about our time.

We were scheduled to leave England on Sunday, June 1st.   Friday morning, May 30, we decided to do some shopping.  While we were out shopping we saw posters advertising McCartney II.  I thought that a few of those posters would be nice for friends back home.  I asked at a record store and told us that MPL had put up the displays.  We had planned to go to MPL to see the new building and take pictures anyway so we could ask there.  You see, we had given up at seeing Paul at all so no one said or thought, “what if..”

About 1:00 Beth asked me if I wanted to go to MPL and I said, “No, let’s wait a while.”  Finally after shopped we decided to take our packages back to the hotel and then go to MPL.  It took us about an hour to get from our hotel to the nearest subway stop closest to MPL.  From there were our trusty street map in hand, we managed to find Soho Square.  The office’s address is 1 Soho Square and after heading in the wrong direction around the square, Beth spotted the building.  We walked up and tried the door but it was locked.  We could see the people inside though the glass but no one came to the door.  We walked across the street from the building and we talked about what to do.  We took deep breaths and walked back over to the front door and gave it a hard shove.   So hard it rattled.  WE guessed that we scared them inside because some guy opened the door and asked if he could help us.  I told him that we were interested in some of the posters advertising McCartney II.  He told us he couldn’t help us but that we could ask the girls behind the counter.  We stepped inside and told them what we wanted.  While we were standing there the phone rang and one of the girls answered it and then handed it to another girl.  I was thinking that my ears must be deceiving me when the girl on the phone said, “No, I’m sorry, Paul’s out to lunch and won’t be back until quarter after three.”  I thought, okay, don’t faint, don’t panic, keep your cool.  Smile, say thank you, and go outside and wait.

(Beth continues)  I thought to myself when she said Paul was out to lunch, “Paul who?”  Then I realized it might be THE Paul.  Mary walked hurriedly toward the door and I followed.  She told me later that she wanted to get out of there to turn left and when I looked up, there was Linda about 5 yards ahead of us.  I knew that Paul had to be there somewhere!  Beth, who was looking down at the sidewalk not paying attention to where she was going, had almost run right into Paul!  I tried to get Mary’s attention and hit her elbow.  When I looked up again I saw him.  Mary told me later that I said, “Uh oh!”  I looked at his face and the gray in his hair caught my eye.  He said hello and asked us if we had gotten what we wanted in there.  Mary started to rattle on about the posters.  Paul and Linda said, “oh! We can get you some of those.”  Paul asked where we were from and neither of us said anything so he asked again, ‘Where in the States are you from?”  We told him Indiana finally and Linda explained that that was in the Midwest.   They started to head for the door and I asked them if I could take their picture, and Paul said, “Yeah.”  Linda told me where to stand so the light would be better.

(Mary Continues)  Paul looked at me and said, “You’ll have to be in this too,” so I started to walk over nearest Linda and then realized, “No you fool, go stand on Paul’s right!”  So I walked over and he lifted his arm and put it around my shoulders.  I don’t’ know what possessed me, but I put my left arm around his waist.   While we were standing there he smiled and said, “No shaking now!”  And then he said, “She’s gonna blow this one.”  After Beth had taken the picture he said to her, Your turn!”  She kept saying that that picture was the last one of the roll but on one paid any attention.  While she was messing with the camera, some young boys came up and Paul turned his back and started teasing those kids.  I noticed the gray in his hair and that he was smaller in stature than I had imagined.  He turned back towards us and I asked him about James, and his eyes let up and he smiled, “He’s beautiful.”  Then he took his fist and gently hit me on my hip.  At the moment I couldn’t believe he’d done that but then realizing he had, I wondered what he was trying to say.  Those kids finally realized that he was someone famous so they asked for an autograph.  I told Beth to hunt up a scrap of paper for him to sign, but before we could find anything he walked into MPL and the door closed.  We could see him through he glass standing by the counter, writing.  Within a few minutes, a man came to the door and he had a couple of post cards with Paul’s autograph on them.  Those kids crowded around and he said, “Uh-uh!  Ladies first.” And handed me two postcards.  I handed one to Beth and thanked him.  Those kids finally left, thank goodness, and we just stood there watching Paul through the glass.  They headed on up the stairs and about halfway up he turned around to us and waved and smiled.  EH started making some kid of motions with his hands and we realize that he was asking us if we had gotten the autographs.  They disappeared out sight and a little of us disappeared too.  We started to walk.  Where to, we had no idea.

(Beth Continues)  I knew I just had to find somewhere to sit down.  I kept saying to Mary, “I’ve got to sit down.  I just have to sit down.”  I think she was afraid I was going to sit down right there in the street!  We walked across to the park and sat down on a bench.  I changed the film in the camera thinking, he who goes in, must come out.  Mary glanced over towards the building and we could see Paul and Linda sitting at a desk on the 2nd floor talking to someone.  Because they could see us and there was a terrible want to just stare up at them, we decided to walk over to a corner a few doors down from MPL and wait for them to come out.  Every once in a while one of us would walk over to the park to see if they were still there.

While we were standing there waiting, Linda came out with one of the secretaries and she smiled at us and said hello.  I asked her about the children and she said they were all fine.  She walked up the street and we walked over to the park, so that we wouldn’t be on the corner when she came back.  Linda came into the park and we asked if we could take her picture, and she said okay, but hurry.

When they had gone back in the office, we walked back to the corner and waited.  A few minutes went by when a dark green Rolls pulled up and I knew right away that it was Paul’s car.  So they were going to be coming out soon.  The man who had let us in the door had been driving and he got out and started polishing off the chrome.  Mary thanked him for opening the door for us. 

Finally about 10 after 5, Paul and Linda came out of the door.  He looked up the sidewalk and he frowned and he spotted us and smiled.  He said, “Hello again!” and walked towards us.  He said, “We have a little something for you.”  And then Linda handed us each a McCartney II t-shirt.  We kept saying thank you.  Then I asked him if we could take another picture and he said, “Okay.”  Mary walked over and asked about a tour and Paul replied, “Maybe next summer.  If we do, I’m sure you’ll hear about it.” I proceeded to snap two more pictures of him before Alan Crowder said, “No more pictures, girls.” After he had climbed in the back seat of the car, he rolled the window down some and Mary told him to take care of himself, and he said to us to keep smiling and to have a safe trip home.  The car pulled away from the curb.  He waved and winked and smiled, and Linda turned and waved out the back window.

After they were gone there was a great urge to run after the car, but instead we attempted to find our way back to McDonald’s to sit down for a while.  I was shaking so bad, and Mary was in tears, that it is amazing that we found our way there without getting run over.

Almost two months have passed since all this happened and every once in a while that feeling comes back of looking up and seeing his face right in front of me, and something almost snaps inside of me.


  1. Sigh...another stalker story. Why can't you just be satisfied with their music, or their videos and films? Why do you have to force yourself upon them? Do you not see that there is very little difference between you and Mark David Chapman or Mick Abram?

    I feel such sadness and pity for Paul and Ringo. I would hate to be set upon by wild dogs every time I ventured out of my house.

  2. See I don't find this story to be a "stalker" one at all. These girls had been in England for several weeks and weren't tracking down Paul. They went to MPL to ask for posters and just happened upon Paul and Linda. They were extremely kind to the fans and even gave them t-shirts. If I was there I would have also wanted photos with Paul. I think there is an extreme difference between the fans I feature on this blog and the awful scum that killed John and attacked George. I think it is important for musicians to keep in touch with their fans.

  3. Hmmm, bit provocative from fellow "anon". Hanging around for a glimpse of a certain pop star isn't something I'd personally choose to do. It's all about the music for me and not much else. It sure gets sinister when you think what happened to John and George (victims of fame basically) but these fans are quite a long way from that.