选这篇文章也有我自己的个人喜好的因素，这是VOA Special English的新闻播报节目In The News里当时对Michael Jackson的报道。这篇文章也希望同学们仔细听每个细节，尤其是开始不久那里有一段电话录音，那是最真实的英语。我们一般学习英语的过程中是很难接触到真正的现实生活中的英语的。比如我们大多是从一些英语教学的录音里、电影、电视、收音机等等地方听到的模拟场景的声音，而我们在生活中遇到英语国家的人的时候，他们给我们说话时经常会不由自主地放慢语速，尽量吐字清楚并且使用简单的词汇及句型。所以这篇文章中的那段电话录音是个很好的材料。在那段录音中有这么一句"OK, OK. How old is he?"，而实际上我们听到的是"OK, OK. How’di?"这是个很严重的略读现象，并且把is给全省没了，我们要说他发音错了都不为过。而实际上呢，电话另一头的人一点都没有迟疑，立刻回答"He’s uh, he’s 50 years old, sir."。所以各位同学，请放心大胆地把该省的音省掉，该连的音连起来，该弱读的音就弱读。咱们中国人可能听不明白，但只要你不是乱说的，英语为母语的国家的人们反而会感觉到听你的英语很亲切！
This is IN THE NEWS in VOA Special English.
Fans around the world are remembering the man who called himself the King of Pop. Michael Jackson died Thursday in Los Angeles. This was the emergency call from the house where he was living.
CALLER: "We have a gentleman here that needs help and he’s not breathing. He’s not breathing and we’re trying to pump him but he’s not –”
OPERATOR: "OK, OK. How old is he?"
CALLER: "He’s fifty years old, sir."
OPERATOR: "Fifty, OK."
A personal doctor was with him at the house.
Michael Jackson would have celebrated his fifty-first birthday in August. He was just days from launching what he hoped would be a comeback — a series of fifty concerts in London.
More than seven hundred fifty thousand tickets sold out within hours of going on sale in March. The shows were set to begin July thirteenth. There were questions, though, about whether his health could handle the extended tour.
And after he died there were more questions — this time about his use of painkillers. Medical examiners did an autopsy on Friday, but tests for drugs in the body normally take weeks.
Around the world, fans like this one reacted to news of his death.
WOMAN: "Somebody like Michael Jackson who’s done so much for the world and stuff, you think almost like he’s invincible."
"Thriller," his nineteen eighty-two album, earned a place in Guinness World Records as the best selling album of all time. It produced hits like "Beat It" and "Billie Jean."
Michael Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana, the seventh of nine children. He was five years old when he and his brothers began performing in the Jackson 5.
He was eleven when they had their first album — "Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5" — in nineteen sixty-nine. Their album "ABC" followed less than a year later.
In nineteen seventy-one, Michael Jackson began his solo career. He went on to sell an estimated seven hundred fifty million albums. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame — twice.
But as talented and successful as he was, he was also deeply troubled. His behavior and appearance grew increasingly strange. He was heavily in debt.
He was childlike. But in nineteen ninety-three, a thirteen-year-old boy accused him of child molestation. The case was settled out of court. Later, another accusation led to a criminal trial. But four years ago this month a jury cleared him of all charges.
Michael Jackson left his mark on popular culture. His music, his videos, his dance moves and moonwalking, the hand in a sequined white glove, the father of three was even married for a time to Elvis Presley’s daughter. Now, he leaves behind family, friends and fans to mourn his death. In a sad way he did make a comeback. His death has pushed sales of his music back to the top of the charts again.
And that’s IN THE NEWS in VOA Special English, written by June Simms. I’m Steve Ember.