Today would have been Michael Jackson’s 55th birthday. I don’t really believe in saying ‘Happy Birthday’ to someone who is no longer here, because I just don’t see how it could be ‘happy’ for them if they’re dead. That’s just my personal belief though, so you’re welcome to disagree. I prefer to remember them, so that’s what I’m gonna do. In conjunction with it being a Throwback Thursday, I’m going to recall my earliest memory of him.
I was five years old and living in Guyana, South America. There were no television stations there at the time, so I remember my parents used to play a lot of music (and this is where my love of Soca music began). One of the albums they had was the Thriller album, and I don’t remember whether it was one of their favourites or if it was played so often to keep me occupied, but I know I absolutely loved it. I used to sit with my ear to the big speaker we had in the sitting room, because I thought Michael Jackson was in there, singing.
Of course the whole album is just a masterpiece, but I distinctly remember having an opinion on three of the songs back then. The first one was Wanna Be Startin Somethin. It was a BIG deal to me that I knew when the “Hee hee hee ha!” bit came in the instrumental break. I think my mum had laughed and commended me one time, because she was surprised that I knew when it came, and this made me feel like a genius or something.
The second song was The Girl Is Mine. I didn’t have a clue who Paul McCartney was, I just knew I didn’t like him because he was trying to fight with Michael Jackson and take his girl. There was no way the girl was Paul’s! Not over Michael Jackson. No way! Horrible man. Leave Michael Jackson alone, he told you he’s a lover not a fighter!
(Notice I have to say Michael Jackson’s full name, because back then no one ever referred to him as just Michael. He was Michael Jackson.)
The third song I had thoughts on was Lady In My Life. It was the part when he sings “Stay with me/I want you to stay with meeeeee…” Five year-old Wendy felt so sorry for him! (Yes – ‘Wendy’. I started spelling it with an ‘i’ when I was 12). Why didn’t she want to stay with him?? Why would Michael Jackson have to ask you to stay with him?? Why was everyone being horrible to Michael Jackson? 😦
One thing that baffled me was… scroll up to the photo at the top of this post… Can you see the way he has two very prominent veins sticking out of his wrist area? How?? I didn’t understand it and it made me study my own wrist trying to figure it out.
It wasn’t until we came back to live in London that I saw the Thriller video, and I became a walking contradiction. The video scared the sh*te out of me, but I loved it. My cousins had The Making of Michael Jackson’s Thriller on video, and on my orders we had to watch it every single time we went to their house. But I loved Michael Jackson and was scared of him in equal measures, because I thought that every time he appeared on TV he would turn into a werewolf. I have a memory of watching him perform Human Nature (I think) on Top Of The Pops, and watching it while hiding behind my hands… The good ole days, eh?
I’ve always said that no man has ever created excitement for me the way Michael Jackson did, so all I can do is thank him for his creativity.
RIP Michael Jackson x