Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett, Ed McMahon, Iran, Twitter. Oh, uh, hi – trying to get hits on my blog. Or would anyone like to take a break from all of those topics and read about my hard drive catastrophe? It’s compelling, but maybe only to me.
Oh, okay, I’ll spare everyone the self-indulgent hard-drive whine. For now. Meanwhile I’ll self-indulgently get on the Celebrity Death Train with everybody else.
Sometimes I wonder why so many people feel compelled to talk about celebrity deaths, even those who hate themselves for doing it. Witness the friend who immediately sent out emails to a chunk of her address book to say she couldn’t understand why her cousin always had to call her immediately to share the news of tragedies, “such as the deaths today of Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson.” (Have you heard?)
This particular email moved me beyond the why into the how. I find it interesting observing how we note the passing of celebrities. My teenage daughter told me about Michael Jackson. She got the news in a text from a friend. Having never sent a text message in my life, relying instead on the old-fashioned internet, I’d be lagging minutes behind on my newsfeeds if not for having a teen in the house.
My 11-year-old knew of Michael Jackson through the Weird Al connection. He only started watching MJ videos on YouTube after having seen the Weird Al parodies first. “They’re even funnier once you’ve seen the originals,” he observes.
My brother wins the prize for succinctness: “Bad week to be a celebrity.”
My friends and I stoit around among a handful of variations on the celebrity death discussion. 1.How much the Thriller video rocked our worlds when we were young, and how our kids missed out on the Jackson we knew before creepdom took hold. 2. How Michael Jackson stole the spotlight from Farrah Fawcett, who had put the fire in a generation of girls to achieve fabulous hair and kick butt. 3. The fact that we know for sure now not depend on Ed McMahon to fund a very early retirement. 4. How we should really be talking about serious issues such as the election in Iran and how journalism is forever changed. 5. Which seems to lead back to how each of us got the news about the recent celebrity deaths.