I have been following and posting on a thread over on DDM entitled “Antics”. Basically, the original post asked fans to describe some of their craziest behavior in regards to the band. This topic always can be a dangerous one when brought up either publicly or privately. If this type of question is asked in public with non-Duranies, there is a good chance that people will be judging you and determining that you might actually be crazy, that you take this fan thing too far, that you don’t have a life, or something else that is equally negative. Yet, I do not understand how these people can’t relate. After all, it is a Sunday afternoon in the fall and I’m willing to bet that countless Americans have their TV tuned to the football game of their choice. I might think it is weird that they feel these games are so important that they schedule them into their Sunday activities (I don’t actually but I could). So how are Duranies so different from football fans? How are they different than people who religiously watch every episode of a specific television show? Someone explain to me how we are so different than people who go to the first showing of their favorite movie sequel when it comes out? I don’t think we are all that different.
Yes, fans do things that may seem a bit overboard to outsiders but it is generally all in fun. Of course, it seems to me that most Duranies’ antics are usually done with other people. For example, Rhonda and I do most of our fan activities together and yes, some of those things might be deemed a bit extreme to the outside world. For example, in the fall of 2008, we did drive over 800 miles in a weekend to see three shows and we would do it again. I suspect other Duranies would, too. We did not drive all that way or go to those shows as a way of proving how big of fans we were/are but because it was fun! First, we were able to be together. In that way, “touring” is a celebration of our friendship. Second, we were able to experience and enjoy this thing we have in common, which is Duran and their music. Lastly, we spent time in cities and states that we don’t get the chance to and meet people whom we wouldn’t have met otherwise. While some people may say it is extreme, I say it is all in good fun. Of course, I don’t think it is any “crazier” than the Green Bay Packers fans that I see going to games in extreme cold or any “crazier” than those Twilight fans who stand outside in line to get tickets to the latest movie.
Therefore, a thread like this on a private, fan-only message board should be one where the fans can come and embrace the silly but entertaining moments of the past all in the name of being a fan. Unfortunately, that is not always the case as fans will often judge other fans and their behaviors. Some behaviors can be seen as crossing a line even with other fans. I think most people would agree that committing a crime to get to the band would be over the line. Another example might be that it is not okay to physically stalk a band member or his family. Yet, where do you draw the line when it comes to finding out where a member lives? What about going up to them in public places? Is this acceptable? Unacceptable? What about giving and sending gifts to them? Crazy or cool? I don’t actually know. I know what I might think is going too far but others may disagree with me. Nonetheless, posters on this thread have enjoyed a positive atmosphere and pleasant response for now and I hope it continues that way so that we can embrace our fandom together. I wouldn’t be surprised, though, if someone doesn’t come in and call someone a “Durantard” at some point for some action. It seems to me that negative statements and reactions like that is a way for a fan to distance herself/himself from other fans. It is an attempt to say, “I’m a fan but I’m not a CRAZY fan.” In that way, fans can become just like the general public with judgemental thoughts and statements.