Thursday, June 10, 2010

I Read the Lyrical Error Today Oh Boy

For the second consecutive day I'm going to get all Patty Punctilious on Christopher Hitchens and his new book, Hitch-22. Chapter Two begins with a couple of quotations, including this one:

I heard the news today, Oh Boy. 
The English army had just won the war.
--The Beatles: Sergeant Pepper: "A Day in the Life"

As it happens, that has been one of my favorite songs since I first heard it when I was six years old, during a visit to Berlin, Germany. And I happen to know (and have it confirmed by the CD liner notes and lyrics in front of me) that it goes, "I read the news today oh boy." And in fact it is after the line, "I saw a film today oh boy"  that we get the lyric, "The English Army had just won the war."

But don't ask me to explain I Am the Walrus.