Friday, June 26, 2009
I was a bit snooty about pop culture when I was in High School, so I never really jumped on the Michael Jackson bandwagon. I was more familiar with Itzhak Perlman’s (you’ve heard of him, right? Famous violinist!) life than I was with Michael Jackson. But in the early 80’s it was impossible to ignore Michael Jackson. He seemed ever-present.
I can still remember the first time I saw his “Thriller” video.
I saw it in the place where most high school guys wanted to hang out—a friend’s basement. One of my buddies and I watched it on MTV. He and I sat speechless (which is saying a lot) during the entire video. I was mesmerized. The dancing, the set, the special effects—I can still vividly remember the moment.
But I still watched his life from afar. His behavior became so bizarre that I saw him as a spectacle. Even though the charges against him for child molestation were quite serious, at that time I felt some relief when he was acquitted. It seemed like he needed time away from the intense spotlight to get his life back together.
I was looking forward to hearing how his new tour would go. Now we’ll have to look back and remember an unbelievable talent.
Achieving fame has a high price and Michael Jackson certainly paid it.