Thursday, June 25, 2009


I cannot possibly NOT write about this tonight. The King of Pop has died.

Let's try, hard as it may be, to forget about the Michael of the past twenty years. The allegations (which, I admit I believe are very true) of child molestation; the multiple plastic surgeries; the baby-dangling incident; Lisa Marie?; I could go on and on, but I won't.

I want to remember the Michael of my childhood. The Michael Jackson that I had posters of, covering every inch of my 6th grade bedroom wall. The Michael Jackson that wrote and sang some unforgettable music. The Michael Jackson that danced better than anyone I had ever seen. The Michael Jackson who gave us, who gave me, "Thriller," one of the most important albums I have ever owned. Michael was the very first musical performer I can remember getting into.

I learned every dance move from his his music videos, by literally freeze-framing them on my VCR frame by frame until I wore the tapes out.

I had a white glove that I hand sewed hundreds of silver sequins on, so that too could have a sparkling glove.

I wanted to get the red "Beat It" jacket, but my parents wouldn't let me. (Oh, and THANK YOU Mom and Dad, that was a good call!!)

I learned how to Moonwalk.

Because of Thriller, I came to learn all about the younger Michael. I bought "Off The Wall," which to this day still has some of the best dance songs of all time.

I accumulated tons of Jackson 5 Albums, and was absolutely stricken by the incredible talent that he had when he was still a young boy, fronting his brother's band.

I am so sad today about the death of the Icon that was Michael Jackson. I am sad for his family; for his kids; for those who are too young to know just how talented the entertainer was.

In my humble opinion, Michael is the perfect example of the dangers of childhood stars. What an incredible talent he was, but what a tragic life he ended up having. He had such underlying sadness about him, and it seemed that he never, ever, had an opportunity to have an "normal" life, let alone a childhood. Every person deserves to enjoy their childhood, and he is a sad example of what happens when that is taken away. Nevermind the riches and the fame and the talent; I can't help but think that Michael was a deprived person, and that this is what ultimately led to all of his adult troubles.

While I would never, ever excuse or forgive any of his transgressions, most especially the child molestation allegations, I do have a degree of sympathy for the man. When you are raised to be a superstar, when the people in your life that are acting as surrogate parents are Diana Ross and Quincy Jones, people who clearly are more concerned about his success than they are about his emotional well-being, it is a recipe for disaster. Expecting him to turn out "normal" after all we have heard about his childhood? Well, THAT would have been the miracle.

I will always appreciate the artist that he was. And I will always be a little bit sad at the many strange and troublesome turns that his life took. He will be missed, but will live on in his music, which I will always love.