He remembers

McCartney’s reaction was a ‘drag’
Statement left Beatles fans irate
After John Lennon was shot dead, a grieving world wanted — indeed, needed — to see Paul McCartney, with a wrenched heart, struggling to cope with the sudden loss of his dear friend.
Like the rest of us.
But pretty much the opposite transpired. Caught by a camera crew leaving a London recording studio a day after Lennon’s assassination in New York City, McCartney said with all matter-of-factness: “It’s a drag.”
No emotion. No “I can’t believe my best mate is gone.” No sign of love behind the missing tears.
Just: “It’s a drag.”
If millions of people worldwide found themselves sobbing, unable to come to grips with the tragedy, how was it that McCartney — Lennon’s soulmate for more than a decade — could be so seemingly cold and unaffected? His reaction still outrages many Beatles fans.
In 1984 McCartney and his then-wife Linda gave Playboy magazine an in-depth interview, during which he explained his infamous public utterance.
“What happened was we heard the news that morning and, strangely enough, all of us … the three Beatles, friends of John’s … all of us reacted in the same way. Separately,” McCartney told Playboy. “Everyone just went to work that day … Nobody could stay home with that news.
“As I was coming out of the studio later, there was a reporter, and as we were driving away, he just stuck the microphone in the window and shouted, ‘What do you think about John’s death?’ I had just finished a whole day in shock and I said, ‘It’s a drag.’ I meant drag in the heaviest sense of the word, you know: ‘It’s a — DRAG.’ But when you look at that in print, it says, ‘Yes, it’s a drag.’ Matter of fact.
“What could you say? … I still haven’t taken it in. I don’t want to.”
He was in denial. Just as when his mother died when he was 14. His way of dealing with that enormous loss was to lock up his emotions in public, and not talk about it even in private. The same thing was happening again.
“(Linda and I) just looked at all the news on the telly, and we sat there with all the kids, just crying all evening. Just couldn’t handle it, really.”
McCartney said it was “a consoling factor” to know that his last phone chat with Lennon was pleasant and didn’t end, as so many of their post-Beatles conversations had, with them blowing up at each other and slamming down the phone.
To Rolling Stone magazine in 1986, McCartney elaborated.
“The last couple of phone calls (John and I) had were getting very nice. I remember once he said to me, ‘Do they play me against you like they play you against me?’ Because there were always people in the background pitting us against each other. And I said, ‘Yeah, they do. They sure do.’ That was a couple of months before he … it’s still weird even to say, ‘before he died.’ I still can’t come to terms with that. I still don’t believe it. It’s like, you know, those dreams you have where he’s still alive, then you wake up and … ‘Oh.’ ”