BlogHer of the Week: Mommy Nani Booboo

BlogHer Original Post

Pity the poor folk who aren't Michael Jackson fans, for whom it's been a tough couple of months. This week marked the anniversary of the late King of Pop's birthdate, duly mourned by most radio stations in Michaeldom. It was nigh-on impossible to avoid daily DJ zombie-walks through "Thriller".

Thankfully, we MJ devotees can now point to a blog that answers the big why for the unconverted while confronting a universal truth: Sometimes growing up sucks. In her post, How Michael Jackson Made Me Cool -- Tales From the Fourth Grade Bathroom, Mommy Nani Booboo takes the reader back to some of those eternal -- and awful -- moments of childhood. She begins:

"The beginning of fourth grade sucked big time. I was the new girl in school, short and skinny, with big feet and ears that were just a little too big for my face. My ears were just pointy enough to stick through my long, pin straight hair and wave hello. A few of the fourth grade boys had started to call me Gelfling — an elf/troll-like creature with wings from a movie called The Dark Crystal. I do not believe this was a compliment..."

With a beginning like this one, the reader can hardly expect what comes next: Self-doubt, absolutely. The risk of ritual humiliation via a talent show? Oh yeah. And then, beautifully and unexpectedly...personal and social victory, one borne not just of lip gloss and the right jeans, but a love of dance and even...a white glove:

"With the sounds of Michael Jackson pumping out of the girl’s bathroom, it didn’t take long for people to start coming in to take a peek. After only two days of rehearsing, who should walk in, but Kimi Kawaji. I repeat, Kimi Kawaji! She was the most beautiful girl in the fourth grade, her hair was straight at the top and curly on the bottom, and she always wore Chic jeans. She waltzed in with her gaggle of girls, and stood in front of the mirror to put on lip gloss.

I decided that my masterpiece would not be sidetracked and Christina and I continued dancing like she wasn’t even there. Now in my head, I was freaking out, but I just kept listening to the song –

You have to show them that you’re really not scared.

You’re playin’ with your life, this ain’t no truth or dare.

I don’t know what came over me, but I looked Kimi right in the freakin’ eyes, grabbed my crotch, stood on my toes, and shouted ”whoo!"

I won't give away what happens next to little Jenn, who grew up to be Mommy Nani Booboo. Watch as this spunky girl mixes her mother's decision to plop her into dance lessons with her idol's fancy moves and finds the courage to just...well, forgive me, just beat it, beat fourth grade into submission.

Wonderfully free of sappy celebrity love, MNB's blog post is a paean to the artist who moved her. Isn't that what music is all about -- whether it's a killer guitar riff, a visceral rhythm that forces you of the the couch or a soaring lyric, amazing sound has the ability to inspire people to changes, big and small. Even when it's pop music and the listener is a lonely nine-year-old.

As someone who spent his life in that vortex, from age six until his death at 50, I think the Gloved One would understand.

So thanks Mommy Nani Booboo, you're our BlogHer of the Week!

Thanks to everyone for continuing to send in your nominated posts.
Remember to nominate individual posts, not entire blogs, and keep them
coming! If you want to check out all the BlogHer of the Week posts, check out the BlogHer of the Week archive.

Best,

Lisa

For Elisa, Jory and Lisa
BlogHer Co-founders

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