With no disrespect for the deceased, one could surely ask at what point would an international pop star's death cease to be a media commodity to be endlessly marketed above all other issues. And after all, it is in fact news marketing. It wasn't until I chanced to learn that Jackson's estate in California was called Neverland that I realized that my generation has been shunted to Washington Irving's Sleepy Hollow, where the common folks walked around in
But even as a child growing up in a small town, I knew little about pop culture, unless you count Vic and Sade and, oh...Ma Perkins. I also have vivid memories of the Saturday night wedding celebrations at the Kosciusko Hall where we all foolishly exhausted ourselves by whirling to polkas without the benefit of a standby emergency squad. That was pop to us, even though nobody thought to call it that. The same applied for wakes where my mother made it a point to sit by the casket even though she had never met the supine person in it.
Such were the events that made up our days with no intrusions by cable networks sucking the last detail out of the poppers and only the weekly Journal to report that one hometown couple or another traveled over "hard surfaced roads" to visit friends in another town! My parents would mention it at dinner.
It's terrible now to know that you are missing something that appears to be is colossal but don't have a clue about what you have missed. That's my generational thing, which is what I'm likely to say to the new generation's pop savants who glare at me and begin by saying, "You mean you don't know? You can't be serious."
Honest, I don't know. And I'm serious.