10 May 2012

A Celebration of Fans

Here in Chicago, we know fans. We are fans. We are one of the few, the proud, the metropoles (trust me, I looked it up and that’s the plural of metropolis) that still have an intracity baseball rivalry. And, speaking as a Cubs fan, we all know which team is the best one to root for. And we are nothing if not stubborn, we Chicagoans.

But I digress. Many folks, when they hear the word “fan” in relation to books or media, think of the ubiquitous Trekkie. Whether or not you agree with their obsession, let’s pause for a moment and simply admire their steadfastness. I found a picture of the cover of a fanzine from October, 1977! For those of you paying attention, that’s eight and a half YEARS after it went off the air! (Star Trek aired on NBC September 8, 1966, through June 3, 1969.)

I, for one, would love to have that kind of traction for the creative material I create. If it weren’t for the fans, we wouldn’t have such shows because no one would watch them. I’ve been a fan of many things over the years and know the lengths to which I would go to follow my passion, and I’m not nearly as passionate as some fans I know. I recall reading an article in a writing magazine about a knitting designer who wrote a book. Over 300 fans showed up at her book signing because they’re bonzo for knitting! The publisher was ecstatic, the bookstore was ecstatic, and everyone was confused – who knew knitting was such a hot topic? Knitters. Fans. Duh.

Some fans, of course, go a little too far.

Or what about this poor pup?

On the other hand, if it’s consensual, is it really “bad”? This is a long and contentious debate, but I will say that if the dog doesn’t bite you, then you’re probably okay.

So if you’re a fan, be proud. You have a long lineage to be proud of. From sports to politics to entertainers and more, there have always been folks gaga over their passions. Let’s hope there’s always fans, because without them, we wouldn’t be able to tell all the cool stories we want to.



The Internet Movie Database, “Star Trek,” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0060028/
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