Glendale, California - They're back. Well at least for a few minutes anyway before they were all dispatched back to the netherworld from which they originated. I am, of course, talking about "The International 'Thriller' Tributary Dance Troop" that made its début at the first Michael Jackson memorial service at the Staple's Center last June.
At the Staple's Center they took the mourners and security totally by surprise when they immerged from among the audience members dressed as zombies from Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video, winning a spontaneous dance off contest consisting of two other dance troops, doing their renditions of "Beat It" and "Bad"; taking the prize, the lifeless body of Michael Jackson for one last choreographed dance around the arena to stunned, horrified and finally acquiescent onlookers.
"We weren't about to let that happen again," said Sgt. Mark Cornell of the Glendale Police Department. "So we swept grounds thoroughly and placed SWAT teams in tactical positions throughout the facility."
However, what Sgt. Cornell did not sweep was the ground's onsite mortuary, fresh gravesites and mausoleums where the dedicated diehard members of "The International 'Thriller' Tributary Dance Troop" were held up, having infiltrated days before.
As soon as it was dark, after all the mourners arrived, securely inside the mausoleum attending the private VIP studded service, outside suddenly the crickets stopped their chirping as someone turned on a fog machine and put on Michael Jackson's "Thriller" song, blaring it the over the cemetery's pubic address system.
"It was just like a scene out of Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' video," said one frightened limousine driver who witnessed the event, while waiting outside the mausoleum. "Zombies started crawling out of graves, creeping out crypts and walking out of the mortuary, all bobbing their heads to the rhythmic beat and haunting lyrics of that song."
With Sgt. Cornell's snipers all in position, they carried out unhesitatingly their standing orders: shoot on sight any trespassing zombie.
"I had them all attach silencers to their rifles, so as not to disturb the on going service inside the mausoleum," said Sgt. Cornell. "No one inside had a clue of what was happening outside. No one was the wiser."
One by one, each of the zombies looked up at their forehead crossed eyed at a little red glowing dot, then a momentary flash of light, before falling back into the grave from where they were emerging.
"Except the zombies from the mortuary and the crypts," said Sgt. Cornell. "I had my men drag those zombies back to the mortuary and stuff the other ones back into their crypts where they came."
From the streets outside Glendale Forest Lawn, people passed by in their cars looking up at the multiple tiny points of bright light emanating in the dark. Wondering what they were, they dialed 911.
Police issued an official statement insisting, the Michael Jackson service proceeded from beginning to end undisturbed.
As of the time of this article's publication deadline, the founder and spokesman for the "International 'Thriller' Tributary Dance Troop" could not be reached.