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Moon Walk Tribute To Michael Jackson? ‘Uncanny, Ping, Uncanny!’

June 25th, 2009 · Tags:Arts · Coffee Shops · Satire · Uncategorized

I’ll never forget where I was and what I was doing when I heard the news that Michael Jackson was dead.

No wait … I better write it down.

I was using Wi-Fi at Starbucks, as I am prone to do.

More specifically, I was trading e-mails with an attorney about trademark issues, and beating some dude from Portugal in Internet backgammon. Call me “Mr. Multi-tasker.”

Just about the time I rolled double sixes, an e-mail popped up on the corner of my screen, indicating a breaking news story. I saw the headline and opened it immediately … and as fast as I could, I clicked to start my Tweetdeck program.

This was HUGE! Was there a chance I could be the first in my circle to break the Michael Jackson news on Twitter?

Ha … fat chance. I mean … I left my gammon game, closed the attorney’s diatribe and spit out a tweet as fast as I could. Then I looked at my “friends” tweets. Everyone was already talking about it. Granted many more piped in after I ran the link to the Los Angeles Times story … but I never-never had a chance at being first.

Oh well … I bet I was the first among most of my twitterati peers to see Michael Jackson. It was on the old Ed Sullivan Show … and I remember where I was. I was at the home of some family friends and it was a big deal. They had just bought their first color TV and we didn’t have one yet. I will never forget that Michael Jackson was wearing a purple, felt, cowboy hat … at least it was purple on the new tube.

These were the same friends who turned me on to Honda trailbikes, Vox keyboards, and pretty much the entire British Invasion. Somehow, even though they lived on a farm just as my family did … they always had their finger on the pulse. I digress …

And no, I am not as old as Michael Jackson. I just got an early start on music television. In fact, I had already seen The Beatles on Ed Sullivan just before my fourth birthday, several years before Michael stole the show. Michael Jackson and The Jackson Five might have changed my life, had it not already been for the Fab Four …

Here is a video of Michael Jackson fronting The Five in 1970, a video compilation of ” ABC,” “Stop The Love You Save” –my fave — and “I Want You Back.”

Jackson Five video compilation

But I think this second video link — although not as good quality sound — is the actual footage of the number I saw with the purple hat:

The Purple Hat, Michael

If you have never seen Michael Jackson at this early stage in his career, sad to say, you have not seen Michael Jackson at his best.

Think about that for a second. What could it be like to peak at 9 or 10 years of age? Instant success, jetsetting with Diana Ross and all the top performers of the day … then along comes this thing called puberty … and the highest notes were gone. He was never the same.

I am not making excuses for the things Michael Jackson did in his life, or purportedly did … or whatever. But, I have always felt sorrow for the guy. Ironic … a starving blogger feeling sorry for a guy who had the world at his fingertips — “The King of Pop.”

Can you imagine being the top entertainer in the world, 4-feet tall, selling millions of records … then you start to mature and you are in constant fear of losing everything — especially the adoration of millions of people?

Thanks to MTV, a short film, and brilliant choreography, millions bought “Thriller.” Others know Michael Jackson for “Beat It” or “Billy Jean” … I am sorry to break it to you. Those don’t come close to the magic, the energy, the joy, the melody of those first Michael Jackson/Jackson Five hits … not even close. And he was a boy!

I think Michael Jackson knew it and was tormented by it. At the ripe age of 17+, he was a shell of the performer he once was. I would bet my fuzzy dice that somehow Michael’s issues later in life directly are attributable to him lacking a real childhood first, and then later losing his childhood musical magic. Is it any wonder he had the Neverneverland mansion and the fascination with not growing old, etc., etc.?

So it was a weird day. Farah Fawcett — a pretty head of hair and a million-copy poster girl, who became a respected actress in her own right — left us earlier in the day.

Then around 5 p.m. Central, Michael Jackson — love him or hate him — owned Twitter because he was dead.

Later there was a rumor flying around that Jeff Goldblum also checked out … but I think it was just that, rumor.

BUT … none of that was the strangest thing of the day. This is. Around noon, I was in a meeting, discussing I don’t remember how the topic came up, but I told my colleague that I had a confession.
“What!?,” she pried.

I swear on everything holy … this really happened!

I said, “I have a confession. Several months ago, I saw a video on YouTube and this dancer guy was showing people how to Moon Walk (like Michael Jackson). I watched it a few times, and practiced it once or twice … and I can sort of … kind of … really badly do a slow motion moonwalk.

I demonstrated. (She is the only person on the planet who has ever seen me do this. For whatever reason, this of all days, I decide to unleash the choreography force that is “Ping.” LOL! Never before … and probably never again).

She said something like “Are you sure that’s the Moon Walk? That’s the worst thing I have ever seen.”

“Come on, don’t mince words, tell me what you really think.” I don’t care. It doesn’t matter …

Oh the irony … or coincidence … it really happened — about five hours before the news broke of Michael Jackson’s death, I was celebrating his legacy in dance.

Know what I sayin?