Since the Amsterdam Bed-In had turned out a smashing success — at least according to John and Yoko’s own metrics, whatever those may have been — they now wished to start pacifying America as well. In this they were taking a page from the time-tested British Invasion playbook: Secure Europe first, then tackle the stateside market.

Unfortunately, John’s recent conviction for cannabis possession gave the U.S. government — which had been keeping an eye on his subversive activities for a while now — a reason to deny him entry to the country. This was why he and Yoko had been left behind in Southampton when Ringo, Peter Sellers, and company set sail for New York.

According to Richard DiLello’s The Longest Cocktail Party,

He was made an offer by the visa people. They said, “We’ll let you into the States if you allow yourself to be interviewed on radio and television by a handpicked team and denounce your former flirtation with drugs as a foolish and desperate escapade and tell the young people of the United States that it is in their best interest to bring an immediate halt to any further use of all drugs.”

John refused to play ball, so there was no visa for him. Instead he and Yoko flew to the Bahamas, where they met up with Ringo, Peter, & co., hoping to stage another Bed-In. Said John,

The Bahamas is the nearest we can get to America without a visa. We’ll beam broadcasts from there, and hope they change their minds about us….

Upon arrival, however, they found conditions unfavorable. DiLello continues:

It seemed that everything was against them. The weather was oppressively hot and the local residents turned out to be aggressively belligerent. They were shamelessly charged $2.50 for a glass of orange juice by the hotel management and the food appeared to be nastily cooked on purpose. All of that might have been ignored and the Bed-In could have gone on had it not been for one fatal flaw. The hotel rooms only had twin beds and they were cemented to the floor.

Thwarted by twin beds. Oh, the humanity.

Following this setback, a strategy meeting was hastily convened and it was decided to decamp for Canada. Yes, Canada; faced with the lack of a bed of sufficient size, it apparently made sense to traverse an entire continent. This is how things were done in the Lennon/Ono camp at this time; don’t ask me to explain.

So what was the reaction among their erstwhile traveling companions to this turn of events? I’m going to guess — and I’m going out on a limb here — that the party people from the Q.E. II were not overly crestfallen to see the circus leave town.

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