All Articles Tagged "Elvis"
While getting my two-strand twists re-done at my favorite barber shop in Harlem this past weekend, the radio was blasting throughout the place, and for some reason, anything that had to do with Michael Jackson was playing: Jackson 5, young MJ and of course, young adult Michael before the physical changes, during the iconic Thriller days, and after all the changes. Something hit me: Is this the anniversary of his death? I low-key panicked as if I knew him and needed to call to check in on a family member, but after a quick check via Google, I saw that the station decided to celebrate a little bit early, and I wasn’t complaining. I was actually tapping my foot kind of hard in the barber’s chair to “Can You Feel It” and singing with it to “Off the Wall.” The live version that is. Was Mike not killing it vocally on that joint?
That’s when my hairdresser asked me where I was the day Michael Jackson died. After less than five seconds of thought, I could recall that day, what I was wearing and how I was feeling: horrible. I was home for the summer, finishing getting dressed at my parent’s place in little Matteson, IL, awaiting just the right time to head to my summer class at the local community college. It was a random geography course to fill up a humanities credit that slipped both me and my advisor’s minds. In a span of five minutes my mother and I went from talking about how sad it was that Farrah Fawcett had passed away to being extremely shaken by the sudden breaking news that Michael Jackson passed away. I remember my mother slightly tearing up at the prospect that the young man she watched grow up and blow up had passed way before his time, and possibly in a manner that would bring a lot of drama for his name and his family. As I quickly had to go to class, I balled like a baby in the car on the way listening to “Never Can Say Goodbye” as the radio DJ played every song Michael ever touched. I called a friend to share my disbelief, and once I hit class, the first 30 minutes of the two-hour course were spent not speaking on geography but remembering MJ at his peak. Clearly, to say I remembered that day well would be a massive understatement.
Back to present day, or something like that, my hairdresser told a story of receiving a text message about his death and how no one believed it until a random man ran into the store they were in and and got his Paul Revere on, telling everyone he was dead. Another guy waiting to get his hair cut told a story about being shocked while visiting family in the South. The stories went on and on. Before I knew it, folks were comparing it to where they were when Barack Obama won the presidency in ’08, his inauguration the next January, and where they were on 9/11…
9/11 as in September 11, 2001. I didn’t realize what an “interesting” comparison that was until after I had made my way back to Brooklyn.