But I was just a kid when Michael was at the height of his popularity, so I lack the memory and perspective to write anything meaningful. I'll leave that to the grown-ups and to 13-year-old Twitterers who think because they just downloaded "HIStory" on iTunes, they are Michael's biggest and most knowledgeable fans.
Speaking of Twitter, just about every Twitterer in Tweetville Tweeted about Twichael yesterday... Here are some of my favorites:
@legolex: You know something is huge when there are no commercials.
@AnnaLefler: Hold it! The Michael Jackson tribute is on right now?! Well, I guess that beats "Gunsmoke." Changing channels now...
@DaveHolmes: Everyone who's tweeting from Staples just posted: "we're having a moment of silence now." Which apparently does not extend to tweeting.
@DrZibbs: If MJ tweets crash Twitter the people of Iran are gonna feel pretty small.
@TFLN: (515): they need to just BURY HIM!
The last one, courtesy of my June Month in Review favorite site, Texts from Last Night, sums up what I've heard again and again the past week: Enough about Michael! We get it! He's dead! He was the King of Pop! He was a zombie in that music video when MTV played music videos! He might have touched little boys but no biggie cause he gave to charity! Enough!
As a reporter in real life (real life is outside of Blogland. In Blogland, I'm a superhero with the power of invisibility. P.S. I like your shirt today. It looked great when you put it on this morning.*), this past week has been a fascinating display of the fast transmission in major news. I found out Michael died a few minutes before one of my show nights last week, after a girl in the show got a text. I got on Twitter later, and everyone was talking about it. XM radio had music tributes. It was everywhere. If he would have died in the 80's (and spared us the Lisa Marie Presley marriage), we would've found out through the nightly news, and then in the paper the next day.
It's no surprise then that people-- other than diehard fans, most of who weren't diehard until MJ died and they rushed to download his music-- got bored and tired of all the MJ coverage. It made all the Britney coverage when she went crazy seem tame by comparison (and just wait 'til Britney dies, y'all).
It doesn't help, of course, that now millions of blogs are writing about it. Since I can't offer very much perspective on his impact, I figured I'd go another route and give you something else to read.
Over and over (and over) again during his memorial, the people offering their thoughts on Michael (including Brooke Shields?!?!) reminded us to appreciate what Michael meant to the world. Judging by their words, Michael was either a deity, or basically was greatest person to ever live, up to circa mid-90s.
I think they are right-- we should appreciate celebrities more before they die. With that in mind, here's a list of what I appreciate on celebs before they commit suicide, have a heart attack, overdose or whatever:
- Britney Spears: Your penchant for somehow being a sex symbol and yet, intermittently, making me throw up a lil' bit in my mouth from visuals of you doing something disgusting or weird.
- Paris Hilton: For legitimizing night vision in film making.
- Jimmy Fallon: For organizing a Saved by the Bell reunion.
- Lark Voorhies and Mark Paul Gosselaar: For your brief romance on Saved by the Bell, which, as far as I'm concerned, made it clear to millions of kids that interracial dating is accepted, far before "Grey's Anatomy" and others followed suit.
- Bea Arthur: For all your Golde.. wait, Bea is dead too?!?!
- Billy Mays: For making OxiClean se... oh, c'mon! Why, God, why??!!
- Janet Jackson: For putting out that awesome "Janet" album. But not for that Super Bowl thing. That made it embarrassing to like your music.
- Diddy: For Making the Band.
- Carson Daly: For hosting TRL, and for dating Jennifer Love Hewitt before your careers went downhill. Nice catch.
- Bruce Willis: For Die Hard 1 through 3.
- Megan Fox: For admitting you aren't a real actor, as far as "Transformers" is concerned.
- Danny McBride: For being Kenny F'in Powers.
- Steve Martin: For being in "Father of the Bride," which was awesome and made me want to be a dad, and also want to own a shoe company.
- Neil Patrick Harris: For not going into obscurity after "Doogie Howser." And also, for "Doogie Howser."
- Justin Timberlake: For bringing sexy back, without us even questioning its disappearance.
- Tupac: For staying undercover all these years, producing records and pretending your dead. Genius, dude.
* Just kidding.... I don't really like your shirt.