It was a weird week, death-wise.  Michael Jackson’s came as a real surprise to me, but Farrah Fawcett’s was a little more expected.

My students were too young for Jackson’s heyday, but they are completely aware of his magnitude in the history of pop music.  I’ve heard a bunch of them talking about it, and I’m glad they appreciate what he meant. I hope that no footage exists of my participation in my school choir’s “Thriller Medley” from 1984.  Nobody wants to see that, but it was a big deal.  I was wisely placed in the back.

Most of them had only heard of Farrah Fawcett, but I’ve mentioned that she was ubiquitous in her day too.  Not the same degree of influence or anything, but iconic just the same.  And yes, I had the poster.

The 70s and the 80s have lost two of their biggest figures.

Now it looks like we’ll lose another major face in Walter Cronkite.  I doubt my students have even heard the name, but I’ve mentioned that they’ll be hearing about him quite a bit–newspeople love their own–as his family says his death is imminent.

Whenever I’m in some icebreaker or something, I break out the fact that Cronkite is my second cousin.  I’ve never met him, but he was pretty close to my grandmother.  He’s the only famous relative I have.

It all seems like a good time to allow Steve Martin to pay homage to Farrah and Michael:

Boy oh boy, I am so mad at Farrah Fawcett-Majors. She is so conceited. She has never called me once And after the hours I’ve spent holding up her poster with one hand! Geez!


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