Tag Archives: Michael Jackson

Paul McCartney 1, Michael Jackson 0.

Am I the only one to spot the bitter irony of Paul McCartney performing live on the Letterman show last night, mere days after the memorial service to Michael Jackson?

McCartney’s 67. Jackson was 50. 

McCartney looks to be in good health. Jackson was a closeted gay, anorexic, lying, conniving drug addict.

McCartneyIt’s one of McCartney’s oft-told stories: how Michael Jackson paid a bundle to acquire the rights to Northern Songs, publisher of all the Beatles’ hits, snatching them from right under McCartney’s nose. But when an incredulous McCartney, who’d wanted the catalogue for himself – natch – raised the matter, Jackson’s reply was nothing short of creepy and callous, delivered with high-pitched, silken defiance: “Hey, Paul, it’s just business.” 

Bye, click, gone.

Despite claiming to want peace and happiness throughout the world, or whatever else he thought his image would benefit from, when this little simple test of his humanity came up, Michael Jackson failed it big-time.  Since the day I heard that, I never really liked him.

And now he’s dead. So what was such chicanery worth anyway?

I often think about stuff like that. You hear of businessmen who are forever taking the low road, screwing people over, cheating the system, making a fast buck at someone else’s expense – investing their entire life, in other words, in things that don’t matter: making huge bonuses, buying massive twin_towershouses, acquiring status symbols and possessions and homes and trinkets by the truckload. Then, one day, they’re killed in a car accident or a helicopter crash, or they get sick and pass away unexpectedly from cancer, or the tower they work in is hit by a passenger jet and they’re crushed by flaming rubble.

What use then the big house and the trinkets, hn? All the power and wealth on Wall Street didn’t make them even the tiniest bit invinicible. When it came down to it, they were as mortal and as vulnerable as the rest of us, they just wasted the opportunity to show it.   

The older I get, the more my bigger, less practical dreams slip away and I find myself craving ordinary things. Simplicity. Honesty. Friendship. Straightforwardness. Trust. Sound sleep. An easy conscience. Comfortable conversations with stimulating, untroubled people. And so on.

Yet this isn’t about age per se, it’s about a subtle realization that comes knocking once you’ve acquired a certain amount of maturity: that, as per the life_never_struggletitle of the Stuart Wilde book, Life was never meant to be a struggle. That the philosophers and authors and songwriters and, god forbid, even the Bible, were right: in the end it is all about loving one another and doing the right thing. Treating people the way you’d like them to treat you. Making peace with yourself and the world around you. Life, boiled down to basics, is really quite uncomplicated. Only our egos would have us believe otherwise.

McCartney himself has always espoused these simple values, at least publicly, and I like that about him more than I like his music. And guess what, he’s still alive and performing. In fact, as I watched him thrash out a surprisingly authentic version of Get Back at the Ed Sullivan Theater last night, I did feel a certain amount of vindication on his behalf. That the good guy – the peace and love and heal the world guy – had won after all. While the trickster, the fool, the lost soul – who sang about healing the world on a grand scale but clearly didn’t realize that he should begin by healing himself first – didn’t. There’s something distinctly satisfying about that.

TV Swami – he feeling melancholy and wondering if it’s the raw food diet. He crave chocolate cake.  


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Annoying, even in death.

This isn’t a popular opinion to be holding on the day of Michael Jackson’s memorial service, so I’ll keep it brief: I’m really annoyed about it.

All of it. 

  • The service and the massive law enforcement presence being funded by taxpayers;
  • The fact that commuters are being held up on the 101 freeway so that the funeral motorcade can reach Forest Lawn cemetery faster;
  • The cordoning off of downtown LA for half the day, if not longer, so that fans of M.J. can surround the Staples center;
  • That I have to go into work two hours early just to make sure that I’m not late for my live broadcast;
  • That we’re making such a fuss of a guy who was anything but a role model, who neglected his talent and became a has-been, who abused his body, was addicted to drugs, disfigured himself, ran up huge debts, hung out with small boys, and who was the laughing stock of an entire generation. Genius? Yes. Warranting this much fuss? Not at all.  

What we’re witnessing, actually, is a massive media ‘oops’. Remorse on a global scale, similar to the Princess Diana oops in ’97. In other words, they’re saying, “We’ve persecuted, ridiculed, exposed, and exploited Michael for decades, and done so without mercy. Now we suddenly no longer have our scapegoat, our whipping boy to amuse us, and we feel terribly guilty about what we did.” 

Yeah, well too late. Why should we have to pay for it? 

Having said all that, I can’t deny that it’s fascinating, the whole staged spectacle. I was glued to the TV this morning. So much so that I didn’t even notice a small zit on my face, where I’m starting to detoxify after the start of my raw food challenge. And when the day arrives that I don’t notice zits on my face, you know that something quite historic is going on.  

I thought, therefore, that I’d get back to the television coverage, and direct you instead to TMZ’s website, where for most of the day they’re showing live streaming feeds of events as they happen.

Mourn, absorb, enjoy – whatever.


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My god, chimp face, how you’ve aged! No offense.

I guess it was only a matter of time. Finally, CNN – my ex-employer and, to the best of my knowledge, the only news network in America still doing news – is covering an important story.

They’ve tracked down Bubbles. Oh yes.  

Remember Michael Jackson’s cute little chimpanzee friend, the one he taught to moonwalk and who Bubbles_the_chimpanzeedressed just like him? (I’m guessing not willingly) Well, the moment Bubbles ceased to be the novelty-du-jour and fell out of favor, he was shipped out of the limelight to an ape sanctuary in Florida and promptly forgotten about.

Of course, he’s now having the last triumphant laugh, since he’s not only outlived his bizarre owner, but still has his own nose. Additionally, according to People magazine – and chimpanzees are people, right? – Bubble loves painting, while listening to flute and guitar music. Of course he does.

 That said, age has not been kind to the monkey. You thought Michael Jackson looked grimmer the older he got, wait til you see Bubbles.

P.S. I love how it tells viewers at the bottom of the screen to log on to CNN.com “for more in-depth analysis” on this story. Wow, I wonder what I missed. 

TV Swami – he a little disturbed by Bubbles, but he say YES to outliving Michael Jackson.


Also, follow him on Twitter, if you can bear it, @cashpeters.

Want more? Don’t forget to check out Cash’s movie short, Fast and Very Loose. It’s more fun than you’ve had in a while.

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Total doofus gets slapped on TV.

At some point in the past I was a reporter. For a little while I waded in way over my head and attempted the whole live reporting thing that is now the staple of local news coverage on TV.

Needless to say, I was hopeless at it.

The first time alone should have been warning enough. 

On a cue from the director, I stepped out from behind a bush ready to speak, but as I did so I caught my finger on a thorn and let out a girly squeal. Then, as now, I was very caught up in my own comfort and wellbeing, and proceeded to complain bitterly and suck my finger throughout the whole piece.

Well, it hurt!

Another time, I was dispatched by a regional news show in Southern England called Coast to Coast (hosted by nano-talents Fred Dinenage and Fern Britton) to cover some kind of geriatric Elvis convention. Only, when I got there I found that nobody had turned up. Nobody at all. The whole event was a bust. 

But did that stop me?  Good grief no. I’m very resourceful in a crisis.

Because I was a freelance and only got paid a fee if I actually produced a piece, I produced one. I staged the Elvis event myself. Rigged it from beginning to end. Even going as far as to hijack an entire busload of ageing tourists off the street and force them to participate.

The resulting report was great, I thought. You’d never have known it was bogus. However, the show’s editor took an entirely different and surprising approach. For some bizarre reason he thought a news show should have integrity and be about actual news (soooo behind the times), therefore I was fired on the spot and the report pulled from the broadcast.

Unfortunately, they had nothing to replace it with. Which meant Fern and DinenageFred (pictured left) had to limp along with nothing. It was horrible. As I was escorted from the building, I glimpsed the broadcast on a TV in reception. F and F were busy gibbering about their vacations and where they planned to go that year, desperately trying to fill the unexpected three-minute gap that had just been sprung on them. I’m guessing it was the longest, most excruciating three minutes of their entire lives. Still, I felt no remorse.

Come to think of it, all the other times I ventured into TV news were rubbish too. In the end I realized that I would never cut it as a reporter.

That, though, was not until after I’d been recruited as “fresh on-air talent” by CNN. This was a few years ago and lasted only one day, after bosses CNNdiscovered that the report I’d put together didn’t contain a single fact. Not one. Instead, it was really more my opinion of things interpersed with pithy asides. Which apparently, is not what CNN’s about. Maybe this explains why it trails several points behind Fox News in the ratings each week. Because Fox News, as we know, isn’t news at all, it’s just people giving their opinion about things, interspersed with pithy asides. Once again, I was ahead of the curve. If only these dim executives would listen.

But anyway, dire experiences like that have equipped me well to appreciate  the horror – the horror, I tell you – of live TV when I see a news reporter struggling with unforeseen mishaps. Which is what happened to this poor guy, Steve Ryan. During a live report about Michael Jackson from the Vegas Strip, a drunken doofus emerges out of nowhere and tries to eclipse his act, eventually driving him to violence.

It manages to be both funny and tragic all at the same time. Enjoy.

TV Swami – he say YES to slapping doofuses.


Also, follow me on Twitter, if you really must, @cashpeters


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Drugged, anorexic, balding, broke, voice-less, frail, gay, and now dead.

The most astonishing and comprehensively troubling set of accusations about the late M.J. has appeared in Britain’s Daily Mail.

It’s here if you want to read it. Truly eye-opening.

Maybe I was wrong. Maybe he did have to die after all. 

TV Swami – he stunned.


Also, follow him on Twitter @cashpeters


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Memo to Michael Jackson – you didn’t need to die, dude.

200px-Reporter_and_Crowd_outside_UCLA_-_MJ_DeathFriday mourning. Michael Jackson’s dead from a heart attack induced apparently by an overdose of painkillers, same as Heath Ledger. Doctors and the pharmaceutical industry have done it again.

So let’s not bother with too many words today, let’s watch some TV.

As expert as I am at locking barn doors, the horse having bolted, I thought I’d post a bunch of videos today that offer very strong pointers to how we – the ones with enough backbone to take a stand against what the rest of the world is doing – can avoid getting sick and having heart attacks.

I already avoid doctors, which means I don’t take dangerous pills or seek the advice of alarmists with a financial stake in my becoming and staying ill (what use am I to medical professionals if I’m well? None!)  But also, in a week or so’s time, I switch to an all raw food diet. Done right, that alone should vanquish toxins and disease from my body, strengthen my immune system, increase my stamina, and guarantee my health into old age. Raw food eaters tend not to have heart attacks. It’s just the way it is.

This guy did a casual survey on Hawaii about how a bad diet can destroy you.

And finally, this third video tells you how never to have a heart attack, apparently.

It’s extremely boring on the face of it, I’m afraid, because it’s technical, but still, it’s important stuff that you need to know, especially if you don’t eat well. The guy gives one major snippet of information which I think is revolutionary, so I’m glad I saw it. Thanks to Steve Nicholls for sending me the link.

TV Swami – he say YES to outliving Michael Jackson.  



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