Once upon a time, there was a suburban OC mom who happened to stumble upon a Duran Duran message board. It was a very small message board at the time, which allowed for her to get to know several of the “regulars” on the board. One of those regulars was interested in starting plans to have a convention, and the mom jumped on the bandwagon. She got to know the committee, and within a year, found herself standing in the ballroom at Hotel Monaco in New Orleans, welcoming fellow Duranies for a weekend of fun and friendship. Her roommates for that fateful weekend included the first friend she’d made on the message board, along with two other close “online” friends. The weekend proved to be a great success, and out of that weekend, this mom met many others, including someone from the midwest (and the co-writer of this blog!), as well as a gal from New Jersey.
The interesting part of this story is that under any other circumstance, the mom isn’t at all sure that the three of these women would have connected. At the time, the mom was the only married woman in the group, and is still the only one with children. (well, children that she doesn’t leave at the end of a work day….mine follow me!) She lives in California, two within the group live in the midwest, and one is from the east coast. The mom doesn’t work for a living, the other three work very hard – one is a special education teacher, one works in human resources, and the other is a nurse. The one connection that binds them is/was their love for Duran Duran.
As time has worn on, two out of the group have expanded their horizons. While Duran Duran is probably still a favorite to some degree, there are other bands that have piqued their interest, and they’ve been known to travel to see them. The other two, on the other hand – write a daily blog about the band, are in the process of writing a book, and have ideas for others. Their friendship has really transcended their interest for the band, so to speak. Of course, if a tour comes up, we try to travel together. It doesn’t always work out, schedule-wise, but we try. While the four of us together are friends, we’ve also sort of “paired” off. Two go off and see INXS, the other two have actually gone on tour to see Clear Static. The beauty of it all is that what started as a friendship due to a common interest has become a friendship based on far deeper trust.
As you might have guessed, the suburban mom in the story is me, and the other three women are my closest friends. We started making plans to meet up whenever there was a tour, but as usually happens – Durantime takes far too long – and we’ve ended up meeting for long weekends instead! Tomorrow, the girls descend on Orange County CA, and they’ll be staying at my house this time. There really won’t be much Duran on the agenda (although I am sure we’ll do our fair share of video watching and laughing), but for a change – it’ll be about our friendship.
Lately there has been much talk on the boards about fairness, and about the duranie-eat-duranie world of the fan community. I’ve written about it here in our blog as well. I’ve had it brought up to me that not all of us are going to be friends, and still more of us won’t like one another. That’s obviously true. We can’t all get along – although I *do* think a lot more of us can and should try to remember that our connections to one another will far outlast the band. My own friendships with the girls I’ve met through the community will prove that. I’m going to remember the times I’ve had traveling with Amanda, or the way that Jessica and I “handled” check in at the fan convention…or the way I’ve full-out laughed until I’ve cried when I sit and listen to the stories Machelle has told me over the years, FAR longer than I’ll remember that I was snubbed by so-and-so at the last show or meet up. Hopefully while reading the blog, some of you will remember the fun you’ve had rather than the way you thought you were wronged by another fan….because really, isn’t that the point?