Sunday, June 28, 2009

Gone too soon?

The events of last week had a bunch of the talking heads running at the mouth more than usual this Sunday morning.

One of them, almost dismissively, pointed out that the American public has been "stunned" by the premature death of some pop culture icon every decade, then cited a litany of examples.

The 50s had James Dean.

The 60s had Marilyn Monroe.

The 70s had Elvis Presley.

The 80s had Natalie Wood.

The 90s had Princess Diana.

And, now the first decade of the 21st Century has Michael Jackson.

That list left me pondering, and not so much by the seemingly arbitrary representative selected for each decade. Rather, I spotted a pattern. Do ye socks see it?

It's more obvious if you include the icons' vital dates:
* James Dean (1931-1955), age 24.
* Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962), age 36.
* Elvis Presley (1935-1977), age 42.
* Natalie Wood (1938-1981), age 43.
* Princess Diana (1961-1997), age 46.
* Michael Jackson (1958-2009), age 50.

See it, now?

Collectively, we seem to be pushing that "too young" or "too soon" bar increasingly higher. Maybe, we should be contemplating what *that* says about our culture and us as individuals . . .

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Anonymous Ed said...

A great article on MJ. Would you like me to place this on You will get the credit


12:24 PM  
Blogger wsmv said...

Sure, feel free!

1:51 PM  
Blogger Agnes said...

Princess Diana was 35 or 36 when she died (can't remember if she'd just had her birthday or not), but I do agree that we're thinking older and older is too young.

Studying genealogy gives a different perspective.

I have begun think once we've made it past 40, we've lived to middle age and anything past that should be gravy. Just sayin.

Remember Tim Russert last year at 53 was it? Then Tony Snow? The Continental Pilot at 60? Billy Mays at 50 along with MJ? Farrah Fawcett despite her battle, still departing at 63? Baby Boomers may not empty the SS coffers after all. We may be saving the future!

10:26 PM  

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