John and Yoko Almost Moved to the Suburbs

Tomorrow marks the 30th Anniversary of John Lennon’s death, and kicking off an undoubtedly suffocating media blitz, The Times has a nifty real estate story on what it was like living in John Lennon’s Dakota.

The article is full of reminiscence from the likes of Paul Goldberger (nobody liked Yoko), Roberta Flack (the love between John and Sean) and Leonard Bernstein’s daughter (sushi at the annual potluck).

Yet the most striking revelation comes from a photographer friend who didn’t live in the building. He reports that the couple, like so many others of their generation, considered moving out of the city.

Mr. Lennon’s and Ms. Ono’s life in the Dakota began in 1973, when they were looking to move from their loft on Bank Street. Bob Gruen, who photographed Mr. Lennon when he lived in New York City, said the couple wanted a home with better security.

He said they looked at homes in Greenwich, Conn., and on Long Island before buying the apartment at the Dakota from the actor Robert Ryan, making it past the building’s notoriously picky board.

Had they made the jump to, say, New Canaan or Syossett, Lennon would never have taken the fateful trip home that ended with him being fatally shot outside the Dakota by Mark David Chapman.

Imagine that.

mchaban [at] | @mc_nyo

John and Yoko Almost Moved to the Suburbs