I Toast to my Home Truth

I spend a lot of time thinking about and paying attention to any and all things about and related to “fans” and “fandom”.  I know.  Shocking.  You would have never guessed.  I mean…it isn’t like I have spent a lot of time studying fandom or talking about fandom, right?  Ha.  This intense watching and observing, sometimes, leads me to see or hear something that captures something fundamental about being a fan, about being part of a fan community,  and about the nature of fandom.  This week, I happened to see two separate little posts going around on Facebook that did just that.  These posts made me smile each and every time I saw them.

The first one I saw was this one:

stigma

 

 

Now, obviously, this picture wasn’t about being a fan of a band or about being a Duranie, but the idea still fits.  They could have easily added a band to the list.  We have talked, at times, here about how fandom is, generally, not super accepted or embraced by society unless it is about sports fandom.  To me, this picture captures that sentiment well.  If want to read what we have said about that issue, I refer you to this post here.   My point isn’t to start a debate.  It is more about how music fans, all fans should feel proud to be fans, no matter what they are fans of!

The second picture fits this idea well.

geek

I am a fan.  I am a Duran Duran fan.  I am a Duranie.  I don’t care who knows it.  Frankly, most people who know me know this.  Some people may think I’m silly for liking a band so much.  Some people may think of me as immature for writing this blog, or wearing Duran Duran t-shirts or having Duran posters up in my house.  I don’t care.  I have been a fan for 30 years.  3 decades.  I have lived through ups and downs of being a Duranie and of being a fan.  If after all that, I haven’t walked away, I doubt that I ever will.  It is just a part, a big part of who I am.    This reminds me a speech I heard Wil Wheaton give, which I included below.  It is well worth the viewing.

Today, I feel like embracing myself as a fan and embracing fandom.  In other words, I’m toasting to  “my home truth”.  Here’s to fans everywhere, no matter what they are fans of.  Cheers!

-A

 

3 thoughts on “I Toast to my Home Truth”

  1. I really liked Wil’s speech, and he is right on so many counts.

    The only way I can really even SORT of accurately describe my experience of being a Duran Duran fan is that for many years, I just felt like a square peg. I didn’t necessarily fit in well without having to really try very hard. (Just ask my sorority sisters) I think it was always like that for me, whether we’re talking intermediate school, high school, college, or beyond. I became somewhat of a chameleon. I just tried to blend in with my surroundings, but I never quite felt comfortable in my own skin. I never felt complete. Full. Happy. I felt that way for so long it became natural and I didn’t question my circumstance. Then I met other Duranies. I went to a convention. It was almost as though my square peg finally fell into a square hole, and it fit. It just felt right, and freeing at the same time.

    That doesn’t mean any of us do “it” the exact same way, and it doesn’t mean we all like the same songs or even agree on the way the band does it. We don’t. Some of the people that I admire most in this community have opinions that are the exact opposite of my own in many cases.The point is, I’ve found other people that love this band as much I do, no matter how differently they might outwardly show that love and loyalty.

    Fandom isn’t really perfect. Even after studying fandom for several years now, I find myself still asking some of the same questions. I’m still (somewhat) surprised by the lengths a few will go to in order to be acknowledged. I don’t really understand the persistence factor in winning contests or tweeting and retweeting the same articles 5, 10, 20 times in order to be noticed. Why isn’t it OK to just BE? Why is there such competition like this? Who “wins” and what does “winning” really look like? Why does it seem that the band rewards some of the worst behavior? I’m not sure I’ll ever know those answers. However, the one thing I do know is that overall, I’ve never had to force myself to fit in here. It is in this fandom where I’m not a chameleon, I’m just myself. As Will Wheaton says, “That is awesome.”

    -R

  2. Thank you for writing this post. For many of my adult years, *I* was the one who thought I was silly for how much everything Duran made me happy. It wasn’t until I really stopped caring about what others thought and paid attention to how *I* felt that I stopped shaming myself. And knowing that I have found others in the Duranie community who–like Wil said–love the things that I love, as much as I love them, that I really felt okay with it all. Thanks for sharing the video – it was truly inspirational!

We (Amanda and Rhonda) appreciate discussion and differences of opinion. We respectfully ask that you fully read the blog before bitching us out. If you're only here to take us down a notch, note that we moderate replies (meaning we're not printing rude comments). Thanks a bunch!