Deconstruction - Reconstruction (mutating yesterday)

"Build it up, tear it down/
Ride your donkey into town."
- the Kingdom of Leisure, 1996

I disabled my Facebook account this morning (because "all that shit is lame as hell" and you know it) and this was the word verification offered me for the "are you sure?" portion of the going-away game:
I thought that was a perfect pairing of words. Meaningful in so many ways. Mutating yesterday is exactly where I'm at right now. Perfect words of zenful omen. Perfect words to move me forward.

And as perfect segue to the mutating yesterday theme, today's topic is obviously dominated by
thoughts on Michael Jackson's death. Michael! Yes, there is only one Michael. Who do you think you're kidding?

I hadn't planned to write anything on the subject but I was asked by numerous people what I was thinking. So here's some stuff hastily cobbled together like last night's Nightline and 20/20 news programs.

So yeah, it was with fascinating wonderment that I followed the trickle-before-the-flood internet and MSM accounts of Michael's death. Why did I care? It's Michael. I watched some of the hastily assembled network coverage last night as well. Why? It's Michael! Jesus get over your pretensions and hatred of whatever, Michael Jackson was easily one of the most original, fucked-up human beings who ever lived. If you do not agree with that, go away! Talent aside, problems aside. Original. Fucked-up. Period.

Most of my thoughts have already been written, mostly by others.


Pre-death, yesterday afternoon, I called it, knew it, before TMZ (which continues to have the absolute best coverage), Drudge and all the others and alluded via email, "When Michael dies, coupled with Farrah? Today? Mark it: June 25, 2009 will be one legendary day!"

RP responded:
"The best thing that could possibly happen to Michael Jackson right now is to just quit it and die. We'll forget the last 20 years and call it even. We'll call you King of Pop and let the toddler diddling slip, slip away like letters from old friends falling off our slumbering chest and disappearing under the bed.

We'll let it all go and remember you pre-Captain Eo, pre-Bubbles, pre-Culkin, when you were everything.

But if you come back...

Don't. Just don't come back. There's nothing left for you here."

- Rickey Powell


Last night, I IM'd with a very good friend up north. Here's the log:

Blog: sad
me: not really actually
we couldn't let mj get old
Blog: "I grieve for him; but I also grieve for the culture that created and destroyed him. That culture is ours' and it is a lethal and brutal one: with fame and celebrity as its core values, with money as its sole motive, it chewed this child up and spat him out."
me: exactly
10:29 PM fuck, JOE started it
man in the mirror
Blog: yep
but you're right - he couldn't get old
it's a good point
me: it would be wrong like an old elvis
or jimi hendrix doing reunion tours
fuck no, don
Blog: yep
10:30 PM me: epic day though
tell you what...
Blog: literally
me: ...they'd better send Obama's ass to camp fucking david
Blog: no shit
me: shit keeps getting topped
Blog: farah
me: ok, wow
Blog: fawna
it's nuts
Blog: word!
10:31 PM me: barry obama was all, "call the choppers, we are outta here"
head to the hillz niggas
sad too (you
10:32 PM are right)
i grew up with the motherfucker
my nigga
TeeVee shows
you OK, don?
10:33 PM don?
exponential deaths
hide the pope
10:35 PM mcmahon
shit, i better fucking head to camp david myself
10:36 PM Blog: blog didn't die
it's just a touch of the aids
10:37 PM me: thank g-d aids is curable nowadays like jock itch
thanks to magic johnson
15 years ago who'd you guess would die first: magic or michael
10:40 PM goodnight


Today, I was directed to this piece:
"I grieve for him; but I also grieve for the culture that created and destroyed him. That culture is ours' and it is a lethal and brutal one: with fame and celebrity as its core values, with money as its sole motive, it chewed this child up and spat him out."

- Andrew Sullivan, Thinking About Michael
My response: You see, friend, the problem here is without Joe and the abuse we'd never have what we now grieve: the Michael Jackson catalog, legacy, memories, and this epic outpouring.

Everything we are celebrating, grieving, or disavowing is BECAUSE not DESPITE.

Without the story ("The Story") it would be just another celebrity death. Unfortunately, with Michael Jackson you cannot have one (the talent) without the other (the personal story). Same with Elvis. The Legends do not take out the garbage or wash dishes. To be historic, to become historic, is not based upon living a normal, sane, fun life. Michael's life wasn't a game.

At some point he became captain of his ship though. Cry abuse and handled all you want. Sure, it got out of control but I guarantee you, the major direction--obvious child molestation missteps aside--was controlled by Mike. Cry me a river but let's not take away Michael's behind the curtains genius. He wasn't always a puppet.

I'll say it again: Art is pain.

R.I.P.? Sure. Alls I have to say, however, is thank you to Michael, Joe, Quincy, Barry Gordy, Tito, Janet, Latoya, Bubbles, Emmanuel Lewis, Priscilla, Eddie Murphy, Brooke Shields, Jermaine, and all them motherfuckers for making The Michael Story one of the best, most transcending, most dissected, most transcending stories in human history. You think it's deconstructed now? Wait for the reconstruction. See? Mutating yesterday. I told you so.

Had Mike not been chewed up and spat out, Thriller would have never happened. Shit, Alien Ant Farm's "Smooth Criminal" would have never happened. And believe me that shit is dope!

And as I told my wife last night, "The child molestation stuff is the only drawback to the whole project. But I guess it does add a memorable chapter." Without the child molestation stories, the legend would have not been as big as it got. Remember that court shit? Helicopters over Neverland. Michael's video retort. Martin Bashir's interview? The shit he wore to court? All part of this story. We cannot have one without the other. Mutating yesterday.


But, lest we forget Farrah, Ed, Mark Sanford, Kim Jun Il, Fidel Castro, Osama Bin Laden, or your best friend, your mother, your son, or YOU:
"Looking at the front page of the NYTimes, there are about 5 stories about MJ. The revolution in Iran got bumped to a small box in the corner. Plus, who knows how many people were killed in yesterday's bombings in Iraq? Whu? There were bombings in Iraq?

People are born. Some people achieve great things. Most people live mundane lives. But we all die. Achieving greatness is no means of preventing death. I don't know why people forget that when someone like MJ dies."

- B

My last threee things for Big Dave Wave*:

1) Mike's kids are gonna be shit-ass rich now. Catalog selling like mad.

2) Mike's 100 song upon-my-death catalog will be giant and his kids are gonna be shit-ass rich.

3) I want to produce his kids in their band. I know, I want to be Joe/Barry/Quincy to Michael Jackson's kids. Think of the possibilities using their shit ass rich money.

"We really do live in a world that was too cold for what MJ was on the inside, when you think about it - or at least the MJ from before Dangerous came out."

- Sean Doyle

wasis legendary and you know it. And those are my thoughts on, as the Los Angeles Times headlined:

"Michael Jackson Dies"


* "I realized last night what kind of exponential jump might be good for you, the thing that would distinguish LU from MS and AKD: the funny. Everybody blogs about their life, their kids, their job, the mundane, the sad, the happy. It's the funny that people crave. BN did so well because of it, PB was fun because of it, and I think that's a giant part of you that you could explore and develop. The funny, that's what the world needs more of. "