John Lennon – Life is what happens to you…

John Lennon statue at the top of Mathew Street in Liverpool City Centre

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans

John Lennon

John Lennon Mural exhibited at the Magical Beatles Museum in Mathew Street, Liverpool City Centre

John Lennon quoted these words in the 1980 song called “Beautiful Boy” on the album “Double Fantasy”.

The song was about Lennon’s own experience with his son, Sean, whose mother is Yoko Ono.

No doubt Lennon may have reflected on missed opportunities in his relationship with is first son, Julian, whose mother was Cynthia Lennon (nee Powell).

Unfortunately, his life was cut short, and any plans he had made came to an abrupt end. In a sense, his inclusion of these words were unintentionally prophetic.

Perhaps the lesson here is that life is short, and and the age old exhortation, ‘Carpe Diem’ (seize the day) is a life motto that would be well worth embracing.

Did this statement originate with John Lennon?

The first known appearance was in an issue of Reader’s Digest magazine dated January 1957. The statement was printed together with nine other unrelated sayings in a section called “Quotable Quotes”

Many thanks to Nancy Riley for pointing out the correct wording of the quote, Jean Catharell for pointing out the origin of the quote, and Philip Kirkland for providing the link below (in Facebook’s Beatle Week Liverpool group)

More: Quote Investigator – Other Plans

Winston Lennon

A Beatles fan in Liverpool today...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *