Crowned the "King of Hancock Park" by the alt-crowd because of his utterly mad digs–specifically the 17 statues of Michelangelo's David that line the driveway of his whitewashed house–the source of fascination, celebration, derision and litigation (by neighbors) known as Norwood Young is feting his birthday tonight with an all-out tribute to the "King of Pop," his fellow Virgo, Michael Jackson.
Yes, on the eve when the coroner confirmed what's long been suspected, that the superstar was murdered from a toxic cocktail of meds, the residents of Hancock Park and all lucky enough to head out into Hollywood on Third Street will be hit with the kind mind-bending, rubber-necking, only-in-L.A. moment of pure unadulterated, fabulous insanity that comes from a toxic binge of too many gin cocktails.
I was driving home from the Riser Goodwyn trunk show at Patricia Arquette's house down the road when I hit the brakes, swerved right and parked in front of Youngwood Court as its owner christened it (in white wrought iron, no less). Workers were rapidly dressing the lawn and the David statues in red and black MJ "Thriller"-style jackets for tonight, and Norwood, who my ex Simon Jones had made many an extravagant custom suit for during his Richard Tyler days, was surveying it all with satisfaction.
"I love Michael and our birthdays are just a day apart," he told me, as a hulking worker leaned a fancy letter "N" against a 7-foot-tall sparkling glove.
In fact, I learned later his "people" sent a release to The L.A. Times, which posted this graph from it:
"Besides having a birthday that's just one day apart, interestingly, both Young and Jackson share other similarities: Both men are considered eccentric…. Both men suffered abuse as children. Both men had their share of plastic surgery. And most importantly, both men found refuge in their music." (Young made his money as a singer.)
"He was the King of Pop, and I'm the king here," he continued to tell me. "So it seemed like a fitting way to celebrate our birthdays." Not sure how his Orthodox Jewish neighbors will take it all tonight, but Mr. Norwood, with chutzpah like this, You rock my world.
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