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Like most adults my age, I grew up watching and singing along with the Jackson Five.  I have followed the Jacksons you might say up close and from afar.  Following Michael and the Jackson family has been fairly easy as a family this visible can barely breathe or hide from the public eye.  Unfortunately (and fortunately?), the Jacksons have been constant fodder for the paparazzi and for Americans’ voyeuristic cravings.  Despite the mystery that clouds the life and death of Michael, his children, his plastic surgeries, his bleached skin and his net worth, he was the consummate performer hands down!  I have yet to see anyone dance, spin, glide and moon walklike Michael Jackson.  Yet, I am just blown away or surprised by so many things.  One, I am surprised that so many people are surprised that Michael died.  This reminds of a talk I heard on Americans’ obsession with sequestering death.  Someone said, there are two certain things in life, “paying taxes and dying.”  Yet, we avoid talking about death.   It is not morbid or odd to talk about death;  I think it is a healthy thing to do.  Maybe people are surprised that Michael died at age of 50?  However, not only will we all die but no one knows when he or she will breathe his or her last breath.    I learn many things when someone dies ‘unexpectedly.’  One lesson I have learned is this: life is so finite and fragile and unpredictable so live each day like it is your last one.  Second, I am pleasantly surprised by the outpouring of honor paid to Michael.  Clearly there seems to be some good here as Michael’s death, like many deaths and other tragedies, often brings people together.   In this case, a global community mourns together over a phenomenal person and showman.  While this ‘unity’ maybe short lived, it gives me hope in knowing that we can still find good in humanity and that good often emerges from sad events.

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