Wednesday, July 1, 2009


What a bittersweet celebration the entire world has joined in honor of Michael Jackson's life. He led such a tortured life that was put on display for the entire world - a world that often forgot there was a human being behind those many bizarre antics and musical genius. Joe Jackson recently told CNN "I wish the world had recognized him when he was living" which sums up how ironic this celebration is (although the comments were ironic in and of themselves as they were coming from a man depicted as the central figure in MJ's abuse). We've all been overwhelmed with coverage and reflections on the great Michael Jackson's life and legacy. However, there have been two blog entries that I found especially original and appropriate. Click the links to read them in their entirety but I've highlighted passages that really hit home for me.

"Michael Jackson: Freak Like Me" by Richard Kim for "The Nation"
Our fascination with Whack-o Jack-o has never been only, or even primarily, with his prodigious skills. It was with the way he personified our culture's most central ambitions to whiteness, immortality, wealth, real estate and fame. Lodged somewhere between the superhuman and the alien, aspiration and disgust, Jackson was a grotesque reflection of our collective desires.
Was Michael Jackson a weirdo? Of course he was a weirdo.
But maybe if you had been in the public eye since you were 7, had grown ass women throwing themselves at you since you were 13, suffered physical abuse at the hands of your father, watched your father and older brothers engage in sex with groupies on tour as a child, were called "Big Nose" and "ugly" by both family members AND fans, developed a skin disease that took away the one thing you repeatedly expressed your pride for, and spent the last half of your life as the most famous person on Earth, you'd probably be a bit of a weirdo too.
I am not attempting to paint Michael Jackson as a saint, as no man ever lives up to such a lofty title. But to me, the phrase “no good deed goes unpunished” seems to sum up Michael Jackson’s life more than ever.
Now you know I have to throw up my favorite Jackson song. RIP King. Only you could pull off a sweater vest with a giant sequin star on it.

Edit: after watching this a ridiculously embarassing number of times PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE watch it and just look at the short, pudgy Jackson with his jacket open. His moves and facial expressions are HILARIOUS. Bonus points if you can tell me his name.


Anonymous said...

Jackie is the pudgy one. tito is the one w/ the guitar.

...What a happy video.

Anonymous said...

Phonte's Blog was so on point to. It put me at peace with the whole situation.