Friday, June 26, 2009

Milwaukee mourns MJ

I for one am saddened by Michael Jackson's sudden death. This is the first time the question of "where were you when you heard that so-and-so died" will have to be "on the internet." A sign of the times, I guess.

Between 8 and 9 pm last night- usually prime fun time on a hot hot night- I was driving extensively through the 'hood last night,taking multiple sunset photos, windows down.
But I heard no rap, no boom cars- the only music I heard was Thriller and the like at respectable volume levels. And it was hot, but everyone was acting civilized. No one honked at me when I slowed down to get a photo. No one tailed me. A bicyclist smiled and waved, friendly, even though I almost nicked him making a U-turn. It was as though the community was in mourning.

Personally, I found the news shocking. This was a man who practically made it his life's work to attempt to live youthfully forever (oxygen tank, countless plastic surgeries, personal amusement park); I thought he would remain alive and perfectly preserved forever. I did grow up in the 80's and always appreciated his music (and the great roller-rink memories it will always bring back- which will live on for all time in his stead. (remember Wisconsin Skate University? "ALL SKATE- ALL SKATE!!") That, and clumsily trying to moonwalk, failing miserably every time. This is when music was "fun" to me (pre-grunge and Pearl Jam). MJ always was fun to listen to, to dance to. I particularly remember roller skating to Billy Jean and not understanding the lyrics, but I knew it was cool.

Much later I learned what a hard, abusive childhood he had had, so it is no wonder he had problems. But many brilliant artists were troubled.

RIP finally, Michael.

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