As many of you are aware, my partner-in-crime is on her way to the Valley Center show. I couldn’t be happier for her! Where am I? I’m laying on my couch hoping to feel better as it appears that I caught some sort of stomach bug. Ick. Obviously, I would love to switch places with her–not that she would with me, though! Anyway, while I’m happy for her and for everyone else who is going to this show or has been to one of the previous shows, I can’t help but to want to be there myself. I think this is the natural aspect of being in a fandom, right? We all want to do every show. Yet, of course, for a variety of reasons, we can’t or most of us can’t. While we know that, logically, we still can be envious. Now, I will admit that I have been rather lucky in terms of the number of shows I have seen in comparison to many people. However, I know of people who have been to many more. Does that bother me? No, on most days, it doesn’t. I understand that I can’t do it all. I have responsibilities in terms of work and I have financial restrictions that limit my fandom activities. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t bother me, sometimes. It does. It is also clear that this bothers other fans, too. Do you know how many comments we get from other fans from different parts of the world who are bothered by the lack of touring near them? We get a lot of them! What about those fans who can’t ever get to a show even if the band is touring in their country? They, too, get upset about it.
Another element of this that comes up during touring seasons is meet and greets. Rhonda discussed VIP packages the other day and many, many people talked about the lack of meet and greets on this US leg of the tour. A lot of people think that the band should do meet and greets with the money VIP tickets cost. I have to admit that I have mixed feelings about this. Now, before I go further, let me be perfectly clear. We have never had an official meet and greet with the band. Both of us have “met” them at cd signings but nothing like an official meet and greet. Yes, we have been fans a long time. Yes, we have VIPed some. Do I think that the band should do meet and greets with all of the VIPs? I’m not sure. From everything I have heard, they don’t last long and most fans get moved along pretty quickly. If this is how it is done for a few winners, how long would they last if ALL VIPs got one? I suspect that they would be VERY short. I wouldn’t want that. I have already had that with the cd signing. Then, there is always a part of me that has a hard time with the money connection. VIP tickets cost a lot of money. Should it be just the fans who can afford VIP who get to meet the band? Then, what about those people who always have VIP? Should they get to meet the band 10 times a tour? 5 times a tour? Is that fair? I don’t know. Maybe it is since they would be paying for that privilege.
Then, what about those people who win contests to meet the band? On one hand, money is no longer the determining factor, which is good, in my opinion. They requires good luck, however. I have seen many friends of mine winning things like radio contests to meet the band. That’s cool. The only show I’m going to is in Chicago, a city more than 2 hours away from me. If there is a radio contest, I wouldn’t know because I don’t get Chicago radio. Thus, in this situation, geography and not money blocks my chances. I have also seen or heard about people who aren’t really fans playing these type of contests and winning. That is upsetting, too, as it means that Duranies don’t get a chance to win. Don’t get me wrong here–I’m thrilled for anyone who wins a meet and greet and excited for people who get to shows I can’t do. Yet, I’m acknowledging that even those of us who get it, logically, can still feel a little envious, can be upset and that this is normal. It is normal to wish you were the one at the show. It is normal to wish you were the one at the meet and greet.
It seems to me that there is a wide spectrum of what Duran fans can and have done in terms of shows and meeting the band. There are some fans who have seen one show and there are other fans who have seen well into double digits of shows. Some fans have never met or seen the guys at all and others have done it a bunch of times. I’m willing to bet that those fans who have been to a few or no shows feel a little hurt, a little upset watching and hearing about fans who do more. The same is true for meet and greets. Do the fans who have been to a ton of shows and/or have met the band a bunch of times feel this way, too? I think they might. Again, I think the thing about fandom is that people want everything they can get or else they wouldn’t be fans!
This post is really just to acknowledge that I believe these feelings exist. I’m not judging those feelings. I’m not saying that people should try to change their feelings. I think, too often, people are encouraged, openly or not, to keeping those feelings to themselves. I’m sure that someone is going to write and tell me that these feelings are selfish and that they never feel this way. To those people, I’m happy for you, but it doesn’t change my mind that I think the feelings do exist for a lot of people in the fandom. Now, tomorrow, I will be better, both physically (I hope) and emotionally and can get back to counting down the days until I’m the lucky one at the Chicago show.