As I started thinking about this blog, I wondered if I have ever done a birthday blog for Simon. I cannot remember. It is possible but none really sticks out to me. Birthday blogs feel a little more pressured than a usual blog. After all, I feel like I have a do a really good job, which is kinda silly. Fans are all ready giving their birthday wishes on various social media so it is not like I’m really unique in this message. Yet, for some reason, I want to do a really good job with this blog.
As our readers know, we like to give Duran Duran a hard time. We tease those we love and I suppose that we really love Simon based on how much we enjoy giving him a hard time. How did we get here and why?
Let me start at the beginning. When I first became a Duran fan, I found myself drawn to Simon. After all, he was the singer. He got a lot of attention and was shown a lot on videos and interviews. Then, as everyone knows, I saw John Taylor in the Reflex video and my kinda-sorta favorite shifted over to John, which is where I have remained for the last 33 years. Despite becoming a John fan, as a kid, there was still love for the rest of the band members. This love would never have meant giving grief or teasing any of them individually or as a group. Nope. As a kid, I believed that I loved everything that the band did (even if I didn’t). I didn’t know that fans can approach fandom differently.
When I returned to this fandom as an adult, I found myself surrounded by fans who enjoy teasing the heck out of the band, even if the band never knows or hears it. Let me give you an example. In 2005, Rhonda and I went to Vegas with a few friends to see the band perform at Andre Agassi’s Grand Slam for Children, charity concert. During that weekend, there were many jokes told about all the band members but especially Simon. Goodness, we even declared “Le Bon” our password that weekend and ran around the MGM Grand yelling that password just for fun. At the time, I never event thought about why he was our main target. Now, I realize that he makes it so easy to give him grief. In thinking about my job as a teacher, I recognize that I’m in a similar vein. The students like to give me a hard time but they do it with love, especially after seeing how much I like to give myself a hard time. Maybe, when it comes down to it, it is easier to give him a hard time rather than admit how much we admire, appreciate and even love him. I’d like to think that the case with many of my students.
In the last couple of years, our teasing has taken on a new art form. Simon makes that relatively easy, though, from his dancing as seen here…
…to the clothes he wears.
Let’s just say that he has given us nothing but laughter and fun in the last few years. You know, it is funny. If someone asked me, seriously, about what I thought about Simon ten years ago, I’m not sure what I would have said. I don’t think I understood what I saw or heard about him as there seemed to be lots of stories and rumblings about what he is like when it comes to fans. I just knew that it would be best to stay away from him as the last thing I wanted was to have a bad story myself. I didn’t want to think badly of the guy. Part of me, I think was afraid. I feared that he might reject me if I ever approached him. Thus, I always stayed back when others would approach him. Now, he seems different to me. I have had a couple entertaining interactions with the guy and I no longer feel afraid of what he might say and do. Maybe, this is why the teasing is what it has been. I don’t believe that he would be annoyed or angered by it. Heck, he might even enjoy and be willing to give it back some. White Lines, spitting, anyone?! Again, it reminds me of those whom I have a good relationship with. They give me grief and I give it right back. I believe my students and I tease out of love and I know that is the case with Rhonda and I when it comes to Simon.
Now, on this date, I have the pleasure of offering birthday wishes. I might not have some amazing gifts to give him despite any efforts I might have given. (Uh…I tried to find some other lime green clothes but couldn’t…) I’m not really good with sappiness although this blog has turned into that. EEK! I will finish up the sappiness by saying that I hope Simon has a happy birthday! I truly do hope that it is an amazing one for him and that the day is one where he is surrounded with love and joy. Now, as my gift, I guarantee that Rhonda and I will do our best to tease him every chance we get, but always in a loving way. We toast to him on your special day. Cheers!