The news that Michael Jackson passed away seemed to have briefly broken the Internets yesterday. But now the Internets are back online, and it's the 24-hour news media that is in 24-hour meltdown mode. Personally, Michael Jackson's death seems perfectly appropriate given the last twenty years of his life -- sudden, unexpected and very, very weird.
But to some, Michael Jackson will always be known as the man who briefly became the Honorary Chairman of Exeter City FC. Find out about this sudden, unexpected and very, very weird turn of events after the jump.
The year was 2002. Exeter City FC was mired in financial and ownership problems. Amidst all of this, the mystic spoonbender Uri Geller had clombed onto Exeter. The team was in a fairly precarious position, so any celebrity of note who was willing to put his weight (and money) behind the team was reluctantly welcomed.
And that's when Uri Geller promised to bring his good friend Michael Jackson to Exeter. The locals in Devon were skeptical, but then on a rainy summer day in 2002, there in fact was Michael Jackson at St. James's Park along with Geller and David Blaine. Below is the media coverage from that fateful day.
[BBC Devon broadcast]
[BBC news story]
By the end of the 2002-03 season, Exeter City had been relegated to the Conference League. Meanwhile, Geller was nowhere to be seen, not to mention Jacko. Exeter's former ownership were eventually found guilty of defrauding the club of millions of pounds, and except for the hard work of the Exeter City Supporters Trust and the good fortune of drawing Manchester United in the 2005 FA Cup, Exeter City FC might very well have folded.
So, for most Grecians, the Michael Jackson incident brings up some of the darker memories of our club's history. On this day, however, we can all look back and smile and say proudly, yeah Exeter City was the only football club in the world that had the King of Pop as its honorary chairman.