America’s icon of weirdness, Michael Jackson, has died at age 50. He has been a Pied Piper of weirdness and led much of our society in that direction. I have watched him since the beginning and he has had an every changing appearance. His skin has become whiter, his nose thinner and his lips redder. He is best identified by his aviator sunglasses; strands of curled hair hanging in his face; a single gloved hand; a short, tight military jacket; spider like legs; narrow feet ready for dancing and someone holding an open umbrella over him as he make his way through the crowd. They say he died of a cardiac arrest. Everyone dies of cardiac arrest. Most dead people’s hearts aren’t beating and that was apparently the situation when the paramedics arrived. I seriously doubt if underlying heart disease was the cause of his demise.
Lately, he has been embroiled in controversy with child sex scandals and financial problems. At one time, he even dangled his child out over a high balcony and made the watching world gasp. His weirdness may be the greatest reason for his success. In our society, you have to be eccentric or weird to be noticed and admired. With all that, he has probably made one of the best music videos, ever. Thriller was a sensation and even I liked it.
It has been a week of shocks. Farrah Fawcett died, Governor Mark Sanford of South Carolina disappeared only to resurface and admit he was having an affair with a woman from Argentina and then we have watched the brutality in Iran over the elections. It’s more than a body can stand. On top of all this, I have observed the debate over healthcare as it moves to a single payer system under the government. The temperature has also been over 100 every day this week, which befits the state of the world.
As for me, I’m just staying on the air-conditioned porch reading four books at once to keep my mind off all the mayhem. I have been reading about a Texas frontier doctor and naturalist, Gideon Lincecum, who lived during the time of the Civil War. The guy was a genius. He had lived among the Indians and learned many of their ways. I read about how he found a fawn in the forest and then shot it’s mother. I read this account of the fawn as I observed three new fawn in my back yard and watched their mothers eat my plants. All I can say is that Gideon Lincecum was my kind of guy. I guess I just like weird people, even Michael Jackson.