Friday, June 26, 2009

Goodbye Michael, Goodbye

Michael Jackson is dead.

That's why I keep this blog; to bring you late-breaking news like that, which I'm certain you haven't yet heard about anywhere else.

Love him or hate him, no-one can deny that Jackson was a controversial person who will not soon be forgotten. Even his fans and admirers have to admit that the man had more than his share of oddities. Even at the height of his popularity, during the nineteen-eighties, there were those who joked about his outlandish outfits and his infamous single "glitter glove". He seemed dissatisfied with his own appearance, subjecting himself to plastic surgery on several occasions. I've always suspected, and still do suspect, to this day, that his freakish appearance at the time of his death was largely attributable to negative side effects from his earlier plastic surgeries.

Then there was his pet monkey, Bubbles, his hyperbaric oxygen chamber, urban myths that he himself encouraged, such as his alleged purchase of John "The Elephant Man" Merrick's remains... the list goes on and on. Eventually we cross the line from mere eccentricities into dangerous and even sinister behavior. His infamous dangling of his son over the edge of an apartment balcony was ill-considered, at best and, of course, everyone is aware of the accusations of pedophilia and child molestation. To this day, there are those who suspect that Jackson merely bought his way out of those charges.

Say what you will about the man, however, I submit that, when it came to pop music, he had an undeniable talent that ranked among the very best. His songs were unfailingly catchy and his signature dance moves were amazing to behold. Almost every single track on his 1982 album, Thriller, ranked high on the charts and the album as a whole remains the best-selling ever. I suspect there exists nary a North American household that doesn't have a copy of Thriller stashed away on some neglected shelf somewhere, usually right next to the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack.

So goodbye, Michael. Thanks for the music, and may you finally rest in peace. May you be remembered as you deserve to be, for your talent, rather than for your eccentricities.

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