The following was written by Jamaica Kincaid. It was published in the "Notes and Comment" section of the November 19, 1979, issue of The New Yorker.
This morning, I was listening to the radio -- I mean, I was ironing my shirt and the radio was on -- and the disc jockey said that the Beatles were getting back together, that they were going to give a benefit concert for some important cause or other, and how great that would be. He said, "Can you imagine the Beatles back and playing together?" I imagined that, and while I was at it I imagined a number of other things. I imagined that I was in love with the man who discovered the principle of hydrogen bonding and that he was in love with me, too, and that it was all almost wonderful; I imagined that my favorite color was red and that my favorite words were "vivid," "astonishing," "enigmatic," "ennui," and "ululating"; I imagined that even though I hadn't died I was in Heaven; I imagined that all the people I didn't like were gathered up in one big barrel and rolled down from a high mountain into a deep, deep part of the sea; I imagined that all the books on my shelf had long legs and wore flesh-colored panty hose and that their long legs in the flesh-colored panty hose dangled from the bookshelf; I imagined that the trains in the subway had all the comforts of a private DC-9; I imagined that I had the most beautiful face in the whole world and that some men would faint after they got a good, close look at it; I imagined that I had different-colored underwear for every day of the year; I imagined that it was a real pleasure to be with me, because I was so much fun and always knew the right thing to say when the right thing needed to be said; I imagined that I knew by heart all the poems of William Wordsworth; I imagined that it rained only at night, starting just before I fell asleep, so that the sound of the rain would lull me to sleep, and that it stopped raining just before I woke up every morning; I imagined that I could run my tongue across the windowpane and not pick up, perhaps, some deadly germ; I imagined that all the people in the world were colored and that they all liked it a whole lot, because they could wear outlandishly styled clothes in outlandish colors and not feel ridiculous; and then I again imagined the Beatles back and playing together. None of it did a thing for me.