“King of Pop” Michael Jackson passed away on June 25th 2009. His former wife Lisa Marie Presley wrote on her blog about Jackson as “a dynamic force and power that was not to be underestimated. When he used it for something good, it was the best and when he used it for something bad, It was really, REALLY bad,” (Note: Unedited. Capitalization by Ms Presley herself).
Jackson was accused of a lot of horrible things, and was acquitted of most of them. At least one case was settled out of court. Some of the jurors who acquitted him publicly expressed their doubts as to whether he was really innocent. Extremely underweight at the time of his police booking in 2003, he died at the age of 50. It is suspected that the cause of death was prolonged drug (Demerol/pethidine) usage.
Very few people know that Jackson was an inventor as well. He was granted a patent for “Method and means for creating anti-gravity illusion” – a technique which was employed in some of his dance routines. He was granted the patent in 1993.
The patent abstract : “A system for allowing a shoe wearer to lean forwardly beyond his center of gravity by virtue of wearing a specially designed pair of shoes which will engage with a hitch member movably projectable through a stage surface. The shoes have a specially designed heel slot which can be detachably engaged with the hitch member by simply sliding the shoe wearer’s foot forward, thereby engaging with the hitch member.”
Filing description: “This invention relates to a method and means for creating an anti-gravity illusion effects for entertainment purposes. This invention relates more particularly to the creation of such illusion by means of specialized footwear and accessories therefor. The specialized footwear is provided with means for engagement with a movably protrudable hitch or post which allows the entertainer to lean forward on a stage at a very acute angle relative to the stage floor to achieve the illusion of defying gravity.”
The inventors are Michael Jackson, Michael Bush and Dennis Tompkins. The patent is assigned to Triumph International.
The use of the device can be seen in this video, between 0:05 and 0:09 (seconds):
(Notice the use of a happy child’s face at the start of the video, to associate the performance/performers with pure joy and innocence)
Finally, something good – the lyrics are sung by Michael Jackson (those who expect to see the usual dancing and music will be disappointed. This is totally different. In fact, Jackson does not even appear in this video): the music video “Man In The Mirror”: