On the other hand, there are moments when I am truly perplexed by what gets commented on – or rather how something gets commented on. Sometimes I can work something out very clearly in my head, only to have it come across far differently in print – and that of course has everything to do with point of view. This blog is only one persons perspective at one given point in time. (contrary to popular belief Amanda and I are two completely different people with two completely different perspectives. We live in two completely separate areas of the country, we are not conjoined twins, and we do not always agree.) Sometimes I will post a blog thinking the comments (should there be any) will go one way, when in fact they go completely the opposite. We just never really know for sure how a blog topic will go over until we post it and look at it in hindsight.
This weekend, our blog certainly did not disappoint. We had comments, we had reaction, and there was definitely some emotion created over what I still believe to be a fairly inane subject. During our trip to the UK, we were asked countless times if we’d met the band. We learned fairly quickly on to ask what the person meant by whether we’d met the band or not. Some expectations were far higher than others, and in order to answer the question properly we wanted to understand what was expected. In turn, Amanda posed the question to our readers. Unfortunately, some of our readers were completely offended by the question, which really puzzled me. At the time, I didn’t see what was causing such a fuss. It seemed a simple question and I didn’t take too much time to think about the ramifications beyond the literal sense of the question. Once again, I completely underestimated the fan community.
Ultimately, the problem is judgement, and our fan community is filled to the gills with plenty to go ’round. What readers failed to notice was that neither Amanda nor myself were passing judgement on their ideas, their experiences or even their tales of meeting the band. Who are we to say what “meeting” really means…but even more importantly, why in the hell does it really matter?? Is our competitive nature so alive and well that even in the most friendly and non-competitive of environments (our blog!), we need to second guess ourselves and our intentions? Amanda and I have tried our best to provide a safe haven for thoughts and ideas, even when they don’t coincide with our own (Anyone want to talk Warren vs. Andy and or Dom, anyone?). We are told time and time again by readers that they appreciate the environment we provide for commenting – and we want that to continue.
I don’t mean to make light of the subject. Meeting the band is a big deal, regardless of how that moment happens. I remember running into 3 members of the band on an elevator in a parking garage before a signing. It was the oddest, most random situation ever, and it was over in a blink of my eye. I didn’t ask for a picture, an autograph or even said much beyond “hi” and “I’ve gotta go!” I counted that as meeting them for at least a good hour or so – until I “met” them again during the actual signing. (tongue firmly planted in cheek!) Even then, I don’t think I said much to any of them, except perhaps Roger – and they still have no idea who I am to this day. Of course I still count that in my list of “fantastic fan experiences”, regardless of whether that counts as meeting them or not. Never did Amanda or I want to take that away from anyone, but more importantly, why would anyone think we would want that?
What strikes me most is how quickly fans assumed we were looking to discount someone else’s experiences with this band, and what that really says about the fan community in general. Sometimes I forget how competitive fans can really be with regard to the band, simply because I choose not to play these days. I genuinely like hearing the stories of how other fans met them, interacted with them or otherwise had good fortune. I’m happy for the friends who have had great experiences, gotten winks from them onstage, or have pictures of them. Yes, I’d love to have a photo or two with them – and maybe someday that will happen, and maybe not. I love blogging about being a fan, writing books, and going to shows. The rest that may or may not go along with that is just a bonus and not the type of thing that is going to make me feel any more or less of a fan, and maybe that’s why the competition aspect of all of this gets lost on me at times. I just know I’m happy, and really, that’s all that matters.