Those of us who have seen gray, drab, storm-tossed Kansas replaced by Technicolor, glitzy, bewitched, and bewildered Oz know the end of that line.
Whitney Houston died 11 February 2012. She remained un-buried until a private, modest, family only funeral could be arranged. That required 8 days, putting her into the ground on 18 February 2012.
Today is 20 February 2012 and her face and voice are still plastered across every bit of hard-copy media, every video monitor or television screen that hasn’t been physically blocked from receiving “memories” of her.
As with the also overblown funeral of Michael Jackson, one suspects that every bit of PR and posthumous performance material is being milked by the estate and the promoters.
I was no fan of Houston while she lived. Her demise has not generated any change in my opinion. I have no use for the practice of sticking multiple octave triplets into every available slot. I object to dragging children into nightclubs and other such behaviors that endanger children. Children are not merely small adults any more than they are munchkins.
I avoid funerals when possible unless they are for family members. If things have been left unsaid, the newly dead is not going to hear them now. Certainly, using a funeral for PR purposes is unsavory at best and all too common now.
No amount of media circus, no amount of performance by other performers, no length of eulogy written by PR teams and speechwriters is going to “bring closure.” The performer is dead, probably of her own hand. No public praise, no “she was a broken but good person” is going to change the narrative.
Do the post-mortem, publish it, spend a fortune on embalming, make-up, burial clothing, and coffin. Kill thousands of flowers, balloons, and stuffed animals so that the public can pretend they knew the newly dead.
But do it all quickly. As with the GOP primary, the process needs to be done far more quickly and we need to return our focus to those events that really matter; wars in the middle east, global climate change, changes in health care delivery, and new, cleaner, cheaper energy sources. Truthfully, 72 hours would have been more than enough time to bury her. Any time beyond that was simply to craft a media circus.
I don’t need to see or hear anymore about her, her struggles, her life, or death. Bury her and bury the story so that we can gratefully chime in, “She’s really most sincerely dead!”