For a college buddy of mine (who shall remain nameless to spare him the shame of what I'm about to write) it was probably attending breakdancing classes as a chubby preteen while sporting one sparkly glove and a backpack stuffed with his Cabbage Patch Kid. (Amazingly, he now holds down a full-time job and spent very little time in therapy.)
And for Terrell Owens, the enigmatic NFL wideout currently with the Bills, it was a Michael Jackson dance contest. Via BuffaloBills.com's Chris Brown:
... In Time magazine's special commemorative edition on the King of Pop, Owens was quoted in the issue and admitted just how far his affinity for Jackson's talents went.Ah, yes, the glitter socks. No Michael Jackson ensemble would be complete without them.
"When I was 10 or 11 I entered a Michael Jackson contest in my hometown and won," said Owens. "My mom made me the glitter socks. I had the jacket, the glove, the leather pants, the everything."
Brown, who also grew up on MJ, reminded me of another defining moment in the evolution of Jackson's career, one that I specifically recall watching live on the ole Curtis Mathes: "I still remember watching the Grammys that year when he first unveiled the moonwalk. Unbelievable."
The last 10-15 years of Jackson's life obscured what he accomplished as an entertainer -- arguably the best ever -- up till that point. I prefer to remember him like this, the bad ass with the glitter socks.