I wasn't going to write about it....

But I guess I am now.

Last night as we watched the news about Michael Jackson, I was transfixed. It wasn't until this morning that I understood why.

I like Michael Jackson's music. A lot. The early stuff with his brothers, the stuff everyone loves from Off the Wall to Thriller. The stuff some people like - such as Bad and Dangerous (it ain't too much to Jam!) and I even liked a few of his songs from that last album... Invincible.

I love his message. We are the World - Make it a better place..... Man in the Mirror.... Black and White etc etc etc... you all know the drill.

But this morning (after downloading and burning a disc of a whole bunch of his music) I felt uncomfortable listening to it.

At first it was great... bobbing my head to Rockin' Robin.... and jammin' to Dancin' Machine... but then something started coming over me.

Sadness. Sadness for him, for his childhood of enduring his abusive father and an exploited music industry. Then I felt sad for the children he hurt.

He was a man that turned into a caricature of a character he played on the stage. And his delusion and sickness forced the spiral down further.

Just looking at his pictures.... to witness the self-mutilation from plastic surgery. To see him with "his" children looking panicked and neurotic.

Those images are burned into me. How can I enjoy the music when the man who created it is filled with sickness and sadness.

This afternoon I have been cleaning the house. I turned on MTV U (whatever that means) and for the past few hours they have been playing MJ music videos. All of them, uncut. Did you know the video for BAD was directed by Martin Scorsese?

I recognized all the songs. All of them. I watched the vintage news footage from the past 40 years. I have to add exploitation from the public to the list. I realize that it wasn't just 1 thing that turned MJ a bit nuts... it was a lot of things. Least of all the crazy nut job fans and (I am sure) the 'yes-men' he had surrounded himself with for years. Money does make the world go round.

So as I dust and vacuum I listen to the music, and the tributes and (yes) the bad acting before the videos get into full swing and I feel conflicted, And in the end I am not sure where I will fall on the LOVE/HATE MK debate. If I like him, than am I excusing his behavior, if I hate him then I am losing out on the music....

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