Where Were You When You Heard Michael Jackson Had Died?

Because I? Was in the hospital hooked up to a bunch of wires and monitors listening to my baby dive-bomb my bladder with a blood pressure thingy on my right arm and my iPhone in my left hand going "Wait, WHAT?"

So, no. I guess I CAN'T go around saying today was a no-news day just because I didn't happen to go into labor.

I mean, whoa. Huh?

We did go back to the hospital this afternoon for the aforementioned follow-up tests, but they were (thankfully) rather boring. Everything seems fine, and/but/despite that there remain zero signs that this baby has any interest in being born.

I'm really okay with this, though. Not just because I have long suspected she'd be late, but because -- as a friend of mine pointed out -- there seems to be an extra lot of celebrity souls floating around out there lately, and I'd like to avoid any run-ins. You know.

Today was an absolutely insane day online. Twitter basically exploded this afternoon. As fellow blogger Anissa tweeted: Farrah and Michael just broke Twitter, which might be the most socially relevant things either one of them has done in a long time.

Aww, too soon? Well, it got worse, fast, and I participated as much as anyone. Because inappropriate laughter is my solution to everything.

It's all just very strange and sad and notable. I have no deep thoughts on the subject (well, none that I feel the need to share: you don't really care what I thought about MJ's "issues"), but I DO think the only way to properly honor the deaths of pop icons is to join in the pop discussion using pop tech tools. And then make fun of it all.

I mean, the stuff almost writes itself. Michael Jackson became a trending topic on Twitter instantly -- faster than I've seen anything trend -- but for the first hour, the name Michael was SPELLED WRONG.

What do you even do with that?

In fact, the first couple hours after MJ arrived at the hospital spurred a flurry of weird online activity. Do you remember those first hours of 9-11? When there were unconfirmed "reports" of DOZENS of planes that were off the grid and supposedly flying into buildings in every major US city? Today was like the Celebrity 9-11 version, where suddenly everyone was squealing about other dead celebs who aren't, actually, dead.

Note: Jeff Goldblum is NOT dead. He did NOT fall off a cliff in New Zealand. I swear. And I know this because Kevin Spacey told me so.

(That's true. But also? Weird.)

I think my bottom line here is that I'm glad I didn't give birth in the middle of today's media circus, even if it did have its moments of redeeming funny. And, because it's late and I'm tired and hormonal and totally unfocused, I'm just going to share with you some of my favorite Tweets from the day.

@Ish: Mark Sanford is SO wishing he'd come back a day later.

Is there a "feathered hair" avatar overlay?*

@jimmywee: Farrah Fawcett is the Mother Theresa of this situation.

@kristysf: Apparently death is the new spray-on tan. #celebritytrends

@btemps: Easiest job ever: Michael Jackson's mortician.

@missycorbett: Ed McMahon. Michael Jackson. Farrah Fawcett. I bet Patrick Swayze is breathing a sigh of relief.

@Ish: So now when the baby comes, I practically *have* to dangle her over a ledge, right? As a tribute?

Pretty good, huh? And while there were faaaaaaar more tasteless Tweets floating about that I won't republish here, you gotta love TheOnion.

@TheOnion: BREAKING: Last Piece Of Michael Jackson Dies

Although this one was pretty good, even if it did take me a few minutes to get:


* * * * * * * *

I'm not sure how this post went from being about major celebrity deaths to my non-labor to my simply posting tweets from earlier in the day, but oh well. I thought I should post SOMETHING today.

It's probably time for another popsicle.

*For those of you who do not use Twitter, one of the things that has happened recently is that people have changed their profile pictures ("avatars") to have a green colored overlay. This is to indicate support of a free Iran.


  1. MJ died at about the time that the evening news in France was talking about Farrah Fawcett. I didn't even know that MJ died until this morning when I got to work. And my colleague asked me if I was sad, and I was all, about Farrah Fawcett? Not really. And she was, non! Michael Jackson!

    And I totally thought she was joking because there was a hoaxer on #iranelection.twazzup that kept tweeting that Michael Jackson was dead. So I fired up CNN.

    And yes, my thought was that Farrah Fawcett was so totally the Mother Theresa of this celebrity death crisis.

  2. Okay -- I don't get the Bruce Willis one?

    My friend Mick had this observation on facebook last night:
    "Woah. Wait. So now that the King of Pop is Dead, does that mean Prince finally moves up? What, too soon?"

    PS. You and Ish are FUNNY.

  3. I've been feeling kind of like MJ stole Farrah's thunder. I was sad for Farrah that she was upstaged like that. No fair.

  4. I would style my hair for reals a la Farrah and take a picture for my avatar but alas, my hair is too long. Foiled.

  5. I was sitting in the office reading the Craigslist USA politics forum and someone posted the news.

    In disbelief, I, like many others, turned to Google.

    The Chronicle's Mark Morford sums up my feelings pretty well:


    PS, Dana? The Bruce Willis bit is a reference to "The 6th Sense" - the movie in which he was dead the whole time.

  6. Ok, posting a rather controversial blog on my site and on blogher about MJ and death etc. Wanna read???

  7. Thanks Serrephim! That was going to bother me, as I searched through my Bruce Willis/Demi Moore/@aplusk pop cultural reference log.

    And yeah, it's pretty funny. Or it would have been, if I had a better memory. :D

  8. No disrespect to the death of MJ - but for years we as a society have had him on the creepy back burner. No one made MJ jokes? No one saw pictures and thought what a wierdo? MJ dies and suddenly everyone is whipping out the albums, and glorifying his name. Little to late don't ya think? Why does it take a death for people to suddenly care? I live in San Francisco, and people jumped on their bikes formed a little rally and rode through SF blaring MJ songs on a boombox. Can I get anyone a tissue? I do not understand people freaking out over celebrity deaths, crying, lining the streets, lighting candles and swaying back and forth as thriller plays in the back ground. Did you know said celebrity? Did they impact your life that much? So I avoided watching the news and big network channels to avoid all the hype. I get - it's sad someone died. But death is part of life - so get busy living!

  9. thanks for your hilarity and great writing. i've read about half of your archives but my husband wanted me back so i'll have to limit myself to a couple of old posts per day.

    i love it when i find bloggers who are good writers, who aren't boring who are cool and funny, and who are well-informed.

    i'm excited for you and ish and the baby. keep up the great blogging!

  10. Is it weird that my first thoughts were, "Oh hell. Kristsf is going to have her baby and damned MJ is clogging up Twitter. Then I won't know every detail of her labor!!"

    I kind of freaked for a moment.


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