This seems like a good time to write a little more about George.
I’ve talked about my various encounters with George in the past on this site.
We shared one brief moment years ago that he I’m sure meant nothing to him, but has stuck with me ever since.
The first time I met him was in the Sidi Mansour while we were filming Monty Python’s Life of Brian; George had just arrived as we were all watching rushes. At some point, as the group exited and was milling around in the lobby, I introduced myself and gave him a copy of one of my Python fanzines. He began looking through it as Eric Idle approached and asked what he was doing. He showed Eric the zine. “This gentleman just gave me one of his Python magazines,” he told him.
This gentleman. George Harrison called me a gentleman! This was particularly amazing to me because at that moment, I looked like anything but a gentleman. I had gone to the hotel directly from the hot, dusty, dry set, I was wearing a tank top and shorts. My hair looked like it was cut in a way that it would all fit under a Roman soldier helmet without any of it sticking out, that being the purpose. I may have looked like many things, but a gentleman would not have been high on the list.
But none of that mattered to George. He was all about respect, even to one odd, enthusiastic young stranger. This gentleman…
I was lucky enough to hang with him after that, but to this day, I never forgot that first moment. And in part because of his example, I learned to treat others with respect, despite how they may have appeared, and to me, they are a gentleman (or a lady) unless or until they prove otherwise. It has served me well over the years. And it’s just one more gift from George.
[BTW, I only recently learned there is apparently a little controversy over his actual birthdate. It was long thought he was born at 12:10 am on February 25, but he gave other interviews where he said it was 11:40 pm on February 24. If you’re more interested in this than I am, google it and you’ll see what I mean.)
Didn’t you get to ride around town with George in Los Angeles in 1980 when the Python’s performed at the Hollywood Bowl?
Actually, I gave him a ride back to his hotel after Harry Nilsson’s party for the Pythons. [That is a sentence I really enjoyed writing.] I was driving a 10-year-old, rusted out Chevy Impala, and George didn’t mind in the least.