Thursday, June 25, 2009

the day the music died

I remember this poster.
I had it on my wall when I was in the 2nd grade.
I loved it.

I remember when MTV first came on the air. There were no trashy dating shows, no disgustingly lewd documentaries. There were these cool things called music videos. I lived for them. We all did.

The best videos were by Michael Jackson. His videos were like movies. No lie...they really were. When a new one would debut, people would make plans to stay home and watch them. There was no Tivo. No DVR. You cancelled everything, sat in your living room, and watched.

I remember Thriller. I remember the album. The real, vinyl album. I had it. I also had the cassette version. Not one, I had 2. I wore one out and had to get another one.

I remember Thriller the song. I remember Thriller the video. I remember Thriller the movement. Thriller is the background music for my elementary school years. PYT. Wanna be Startin Somethin. Human Nature. Beat It. Billie Jean. I heart those songs...and I remember them.

I remember We are the World. I remember that Michael Jackson wrote that song. I remember seeing all of those celebrities standing together, singing it. I remember singing along. I remember thinking that we really could make a difference, if we all stood side by side and worked together. "It's true we make a better day, just you and me." I remember.

I remember hating Pepsi even more, since MJ's hair caught on fire during a Pepsi commercial. Sheesh...Pepsi has always been inferior to Coke. That's just a little bonus here...back to Michael Jackson.

I remember the jacket. Yes, I had one. Mine was pink. With silver zippers. Mine came from TG&Y. Oh, how cool was I in that jacket? I never got into the glove phenomena, but it worked for Michael. I remember that sequined glove.

I remember trying to moonwalk. He made it look so easy...effortless. I remember trying - and failing. I can moonwalk, yes. But not like Michael could.

I remember "The Wiz." Do kids today even know about "The Wiz?" Oh, I hearted it. I wonder where I can get copy of it. I want my boys to see The Wiz.

He was the King of Pop. He was the Elvis of my generation. He was the greatest musical icon probably of my lifetime. He was 50. Are you flippin' kidding me? 50? Gosh, I'm old. Wasn't it just yesterday that I was in the 2nd grade, and Mom and I were at Brenda Lowe's house for dinner, watching Thriller? We were amazed at his dancing. His performance. His talent. That was just yesterday. Now he's gone.

Lots of time has passed from then to now. There have been highs, and lows. Shady stuff. Physical changes. Lots of them. A marriage to music royalty. More physical changes. More shady stuff. I won't try to deny any of that. I won't dispute any eccentricities, problems, or other general weirdness. I will, however choose to remember other things. Other days. Earlier days. I will remember the days where this very poster hung on my wall. Michael Jackson in his yellow outfit. Michael Jackson, the King of Pop. Michael Jackson, the voice of the music of my childhood. I don't deny the issues or problems. I simply choose to remember the magical side.

I feel old today. I woke up, went about my day like usual. When I heard about Farrah Fawcett, I intended to blog about her. Then came the news of MJ. Both were such integral parts of my childhood, pop culture royalty. It's hard to be a child of the 80's today. I am sad. I am healthy, have a wonderful family, I am blessed beyond what I deserve. I am a wife, a mama, a teacher. But the little girl inside of me is sad. Pieces of her childhood are fading away. And it makes her feel old. Distant. Lonely.

I remember where I was when the Challenger blew up. I remember where I was when Kurt Cobain killed himself. I remember where I was when the Berlin Wall fell. I remember where I was when the 1st Gulf War started. I remember where I was when Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis died. I remember where I was when JFK Jr. died. I remember where I was when Chris Farley died. I remember where I was when Princess Diana died. I remember where I was when my beloved President Reagan died.

I remember love, love, LOVING Thriller. And now, I remember where I was when my beloved King of Pop died. Justin Timberlake, Kanye guys don't have a clue. Talented? Yes. Iconic? Nope. Michael Jackson...he was an icon.

And I will always remember.


  1. Couple of things:

    #1 Pepsi is better than Coke, despite the burnt hair incident.

    #2 Where were you when Kurt died?

    #3 Could you imagine if they had SNL Digital Shorts in the 80s with Michael? Imagine the possibilities.

  2. Matt, you must be high. Pepsi is disgusting. Coke. is. it. PERIOD.