c h a p t e r : o n e

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“There are no problems, only solutions.”

- John Lennon

        October 9th, 2013.

        The day that a true legend was born, seventy-three years ago, that is.  Though today, seventy-three years later, was the day that I would hopefully, finally, get my hands on another one of his limited edition albums.  At a quarter till four in the morning, here I was standing in line, impatiently waiting for the clock to strike five so that I may finally get my hands on another John Lennon Imagine vinyl.  

        Though the wait was long, it was all worth it, for a brand new copy of Imagine, since my last one was destroyed by my shit excuse of a mother back when I was in seventh grade.  It was an original copy that my grandfather had had, and  autographed by the man himself.  Now as it was broken in pieces, I had to glue the signature part of the cover back together, then framed and hid it for safe keeping.  The one I was waiting in line for was autographed also, and in perfect mint condition, it must have had to be worth thousands. Since this limited edition copy was put out on the market about a year ago, all the copies were practically gone in three months, and I hadn’t had the money to buy a copy myself.  Then out of nowhere, my local music store, Get Your Music Hear, announces that they have one free copy of it, and there was no chance in hell that I was missing out of the hopeful opportunity to get it.  

        I stand in line at three forty two in the morning with a temperature of thirty seven.  This wasn’t how I wanted to start my day out, but all in all, I had to.  I kept repeating a silent prayer that the four dollars I spent on this one ticket would be well worth the money spent, considering it was the money I was supposed to use on my bus ticket back downtown.  But if this one ticket, turned out to be the ticket, I wouldn’t mind walking all the twelve miles home.  It would be money damn well spent.  

        So far there were about seventy to eighty people here, all bearing a number of red paper raffle tickets.  Some had as many as fifteen to twenty, while I prayed that my sole one would be enough.  I re-read the number stamped on it in black ink.  232677.  These six numbers, at the moment, meant the world to me.   They meant that the memories that I had had from my last album, would be restored as I let John’s voice fill my house from the record player in my bedroom.  The memories of my grandfather, and my own father.  The days of happiness and no worries.  Back before the things I loved the most were torn from me.

        My legs grow tired, so I sit on the old concrete in front of the store.  With my head leaned back against the cold brick, I look up at the stars which were beginning to fade into sunlight.  Sighing, I looked back down, and began an intense game of 2048 on my phone for another hour, that was until a large, greasy man by the name of Bart, whose family owned the music store for years, came out with a bullhorn announcing that it was twenty minutes away from the ticket pulling time, and that everyone who still needed a ticket, or wanted more, needed to buy them now.

        I checked my phone, four forty.  Wow, time flies when you’re playing a game with numbers.  Deciding I should save my battery for an emergency that could occur on the long walk home, I put my phone away.  I then looked around.  There were now about a hundred or so people here.  Young and old, large and little.  A particular child stood out to me, he was around four, clinging to his mother's coat for warmth.  He was sobbing and telling his mother he was tired and wanted to go home.  The mother ignored the child's’ pleads, and instead told the poor boy to ‘suck it up before she whips his ass’.  The boy grew quiet, and looked ashamed.  Now I love John Lennon, but if my kid was tired and freezing, I’d leave on the spot.  Your own flesh and blood should come before a plastic disk, rare or not.

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