I don’t give a fat rat’s ass about Michael Jackson. Honestly, in a perfect world? He would have been convicted side-by-side with the kid’s mother. They’d have to share a cell.
Now that would be justice.
That said, I watched a little of the post-verdict blah-blah on CNN. They held and held and held on a tight shot of people celebrating. These were Jackson fans, or “supporters” as they’re called in CNN-speak, and they were exultant, oh yes they were. All I could this was: Does he actually still have fans? I mean, even if he’d never been accused of anything worse than failing to clean the chimp cages on a regular basis, are we to believe the guy’s work is worthy of fans and fandom? NPR just called him the “king of pop.” By my reckoning, that makes Aretha Franklin the Grand Priestess and Philosopher-Queen of Pop. That touches off a whole episode of tltle inflation. Please.
Miles Davis beat his wife. But he made great music. Ray Charles was a heroin addict. But he made great music. Sid Vicious stabbed Nancy. But he remade “My Way” in a way that wasn’t great, but was different and audacious enough to qualify as real creativity, even if it was heroin creativity. Michael Jackson sleeps with boys, and his music sucks. People, grow up.
Oy, a busy one behind me and another one ahead, made oddly unsettling by the great, pregnant clouds that waddled over the area all day, refusing to rain — on our house, at least. There were squalls and showers here and there, but mostly just oppressive humidity. Today, more of the same. Think I’ll work out early, then stay inside, dusting things.
Also, writing. I think I have a new gig, which won’t make me famous but will put me in a very nice place, byline-wise, on a regular basis. More as it unfolds. And last night was the inaugural meeting of a long-delayed impulse my local friend John and I had a while back — a writer’s group that meets regularly to exchange, critique and workshop one another’s work. The first meeting was small, but heartening. Only we need a new venue. Coffee houses seem like such a wonderful solution, until you confront their noise level. One of our members has a hearing loss in one ear, and do you have any idea how loud a commercial coffee grinder is, not to mention those industrial steamers? Good lord, but it’s like a factory in there. Next time: The library.
No bloggage today, because it’s all about the king of you-know-what. Maybe later. Until then, ta.
michaelg said on June 14, 2005 at 8:42 am
I fully agree with you about Jackson. I’ve always felt that he was the most over-rated (how do you write that?) entertainer ever. Want a great cover of “My Way”? Check the Gypsy Kings.
juan said on June 14, 2005 at 11:07 am
Those CA prosecuters failed to learn the lesson of the O.J. trial:
Don’t try to frame a guilty man.
carmella said on June 14, 2005 at 12:27 pm
Best line of the day yesterday: MJ found not guilty by reason of CELEBRITY.
mary said on June 14, 2005 at 12:29 pm
The “King of Pop” title was created by Michael Jackson himself around 1990. I had friends who wrote the blurbs your hear between programs for Fox TV, and MJ’s video of “Black and White” was going to be shown on Fox exclusively. Every blurb on Fox for weeks before the debut of the video had to include a mention of the video and had to include the title “King of Pop.” The use of the phrase was in his contract.
I agree that his music is grossly overrated. Hearing him referred to as a genius is truly grating. I saw an old clip of American Bandstand once with Aretha Franklin sitting at a piano taking requests. She sang a Temptations song, “…ooooh, baby baby…” so soulfully it gave me chills. Nothing Michael Jackson has done or will ever do can touch that.
brian stouder said on June 14, 2005 at 1:13 pm
Carmella has it right. Who was the last ‘celebrity’ to get convicted? Probably Martha Stewart, and her crime was telling a “lie” to the feds. If only they could have put the mother of the federal agent she lied to on the stand, and let the jury decide that they didn’t like her – she too could have been acquitted!
I recall after the conviction of the telegenic fellow who murdered his telegenic pregnant wife, that the striped-pants defense lawyer crowd on teevee began to growl about ‘jury misconduct’ because of some of the post-verdict remarks they made…..and nobody I’ve heard has mentioned “jury misconduct” about the twit of woman who indignantly said that the accuser’s mom had no buisiness snapping her fingers at the jury, etc etc
Anyway – I think the parallel here is to Robert Blake; another faded out ‘star’ (pardon the pun) who simply ‘got over’ on the system, thanks to his celebrity. Ideally we all have the ‘presumption of innocence’, but that presumption is surely harder to pierce, when people remember you as Baretta, or as a moon-walking presence on MTV
Nance said on June 14, 2005 at 1:17 pm
Honest, Brian, that finger-snapping detail is the only one that interests me, and I haven’t seen it explained anywhere. In what context did she snap her fingers at the jury? Was she signaling for someone to fetch her a margarita, or trying to catch their attention so she could motion to something weird the defendant was doing?
alex said on June 14, 2005 at 1:48 pm
Brian, I don’t know that it’s stardom so much as it is having the best defense attorneys money can buy, along with the good fortune of prosecution witnesses so unsympathetic no one cares what the accused did. Blake’s wife was such a skank the jury doubtless forgave him. And the mother of the victims in the Jackson case, though not on trial, ought to have been.
blue girl said on June 14, 2005 at 2:21 pm
Nance: I also was intrigued by the finger snapping comment.
Here’s what I found at cnn.com:
“The jurors, who listened to the mother for more than five days, indicated that they, too, doubted her credibility and were put off by the way she directly addressed jurors and accented her testimony by snapping her fingers.
“I disliked it intensely,” said Juror No. 5, a 79-year-old woman from Santa Maria. “I thought, ‘Don’t snap your fingers at me, lady.’ ”
Must be a habit she had —
The other thing that I couldn’t get over — was that one woman who looked completely normal who was letting a dove fly out of a cage every time they read “not-guilty.”
It is quite a world we live in. Never a dull moment.
Dorothy said on June 14, 2005 at 2:47 pm
A former co-worker of mine is a racist, pure and simple. She loves American Idol and refused to vote for any contestant who was black. So I was stunned to get an e-mail from her this morning saying she was “very excited and happy” that MJ was found innocent. I am still amazed at this. I was convinced she’d be fuming mad that he was not convicted. It is indeed a strange world, blue girl.
mary said on June 14, 2005 at 3:24 pm
Michael Jackson’s race is sort of non-existent, isn’t it? He uses the race card when things aren’t going his way, but his two marriages were to white women, his children are white, and to me that crowd of dove releasing weirdos looked mostly white. Maybe a white racist would like him because he tries so hard to not be black.
Nance said on June 14, 2005 at 3:35 pm
What would she have done with those doves if the verdict had gone the other way? “Stand back, I’m stranglin’ another one!”
John said on June 14, 2005 at 3:47 pm
Where was it that they released the dove and it immeadiately took a nose dive?
Dorothy said on June 14, 2005 at 4:08 pm
Mary – as I typed my previous entry it did dawn on me: Hey – he’s not really black anymore!! So maybe that’s why this woman feels the way she does. But I just think she’s twisted – in more ways than one.
mary said on June 14, 2005 at 11:51 pm
What could a racist find more appealing than a black man who desperately wants to be white? It’s like he’s seen the error of his ways. Michael Jackson had the money and power to make himself and his children white, which is pretty rare.
I heard some commentary on the radio today about the “celebrity” idea. Someone pointed out that if this was Mike Tyson on trial, it’s not likely he would have been more liked by the jury than the accuser and his mother.
Dorothy said on June 15, 2005 at 6:54 am
Excellent point, Mary! When it comes to this woman, I feel whatever feelings she has must be subliminal at best. She is not very bright and was always very petty over things that happened in the office. But you called this one right – he’s white now, so he’s acceptable to her.
Ricardo said on June 15, 2005 at 5:31 pm
Phil Spector hair saved him? http://sfgate.com/columnists/asmussen/
(look at 6/15 archive after Friday)
I remember a kid with tons of talent. Sometimes kid stars look funny when they grow up. Like Jerry Mathers.
“Jackson’s Johnson” was discussed on Radio’s Stephanie Miller show, I thought that was pretty funny.