On the Anniversary of MJs Death


11 July 2010

I’m not planning on or interested in jumping on the Nicole Krauss-bashing bandwagon with regards to her recent jacket blurb kerfuffle.  I’m not even sure kerfuffle is the right word.  I do think that Laura Miller‘s piece in Salon, “Beware of Blurbs,” in the wake of all that, is worth a read: she doth speak the truth, I think (although, if I may, let me just say that I have no personal relationship with either of the wonderful authors who wrote blurbs for Long for This World).

What I would like to draw your attention to, a year after Michael Jackson‘s death, are a few recent homages (of sorts) to him that warmed my heart: one at Conversational Reading — a kind of side joke aimed, I suppose, at Nicole Krauss, but giving MJ his due nonetheless; another at The Millions, as part of Jon Sands‘s terrific commencement address to the Bronx Academy of Letters; and finally Nancy Griffin‘s excellent article in the current issue of Vanity Fair, “The Thriller Diaries.”

What can I say.  I was 10 years old when Thriller was released.  My sisters were 12 and 13.  MJ was our Beatles, our James Brown, our Elvis.  To some degree, our JFK.  From Griffin’s article:

To me, Thriller seems like the last time that everyone on the planet got excited at the same time by the same thing: no matter where you went in the world, they were playing those songs, and you could dance to them. Since then, the fragmentation of pop culture has destroyed our sense of collective exhilaration, and I miss that.

Me, too.  RIP, MJ.


One Response to “On the Anniversary of MJs Death”

  1. Lisa N.R. Says:

    I love Griffin’s phrase, “collective exhilaration.” It brings to mind Barbara Ehrenreich’s “Dancing in the Streets: A History of Collective Joy,” her book about the history/demise of ecstatic rituals throughout western culture. Both Griffin, Ehrenreich, and you, Sonya, (in your previous posts re: MJ) tap into that longing for “collective exhilaration” that is best exemplified for me with the…FLASH MOB. I want to see-be-a-part-of-be-one-with a flash mob in the worst way. There was a Thriller flash mob last year here in Seattle, and it was the apoethesis of awesomeness. RIP, MJ, indeed.

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