Give yourself a break!

This week in the Real Life of Rhonda, marching band started for my youngest. She is about to start high school, and along with that comes all of the football games, rallies, parades and practices. So this past week served as “Band Camp”. Now, I remember Band Camp very well – sure, it may have been, well, several decades back now, but I still remember standing on the field in late August, learning new field marching patterns, braving the heat, and believe it or not, enjoying every second. I was weird that way. These days though, it is a little different. Instead of being at camp all day, they have two sessions – one in the morning, and another in the evening. This means that I spent my day carting the darling daughter back and forth to school, in addition to all of the other running around any other mom does all day.

All of this would have been fine and good had I paid any attention to the calendar. Sadly though, I was in robot mode most of the week and did not. I’m going to be very transparent here and even admit that had I noticed the date, I’m not even entirely sure I’d have recognized any sort of significance. It took me clicking on Facebook and seeing the numerous posts and declarations of “Happy DDAD!!” to realize that I’d pretty much missed the whole thing. I quickly posted something to Twitter, and went on to whatever I needed to do next.

At the precise moment I posted, I didn’t think much about Duran Duran Appreciation Day. Mostly, I spent about a nanosecond thinking “Wow. How things change”, another on “Some DD fan YOU are, Rhonda Lynn”, and that was it. As the day and/evening progressed though, I was a little sad. In previous years, I’d done anything and everything from cohosting a 24-hour video marathon to doing videos and making toasts for the band, and even chatting on Twitter. This year, I tweeted. Wooo! How pathetic, right?

I didn’t dwell on it much after that, although I was thinking about what I could be blogging about. I kept coming back to this idea of how much fandom has changed for me personally, particularly as of late, but even as the 2000’s progressed to the 2010’s, and now the 2020’s. Granted, I’ve been a fan since the 80s, but I think that at least for me, fandom since the beginning of the internet is completely different than prior.

I’ve also noticed a significant few on Twitter who have had much of the same thoughts as I’ve experienced lately. This tour just feels different to each of them, personally. Now, I can’t characterize exactly how each one of these fans feels – but to generalize – there just doesn’t feel like the same amount of excitement or intensity. People who maybe would have normally gone to shows are not. Maybe it is that I’m not following the same people I once did. I’m not sure, but I can say that *I* myself feel different about these shows, and I’ve said that here on the blog before.

So what is it? Well, I can’t speak for any of you – but I can share how I feel. I’m older! I’m tired! I still love Duran Duran, but I can’t spend hundreds of hours online following them any longer. I’m also super busy. I had no idea what I was talking about back when I’d complain of being busy in 2006 or 2012, or even 2018. Ha!

Here’s the thing though: many of us, particularly some of the people I’m thinking of as I compose this post, have been fans since the early 80s. We’ve been in it for the long haul. The big journey. The whole kit and caboodle. Did we really think everything would stay the same – the intensity of our interest, our time and youth – would all just stay constant?

I guess I did. I mean, I never really thought about it in those terms, but I don’t think I stopped to consider what fandom would really BE like when I was in my 50s. Hell, John didn’t even think about still being a rock star in his 50’s, so I don’t think we’re all that far off. How many bands from the 80s *really* have super active fan bases, and beyond that – how many have actually lasted this long? The list is pretty short (although I’m proud to say it is longer than the list from that of our parents generation). Just by staying active, still purchasing music, going to shows, and traveling wherever we can – we’re probably doing a lot more than our parents ever did.

So, if you’re like me and you’re not exactly in a funk, but you’re also not exactly screaming for attention the way you once did – cut yourself a break. We’re still doing this fandom thing, but we’re not all in our 20s and 30s anymore. For me, fandom is different in my fifties. I think it is a matter of learning how to be okay with it.






One response to “Give yourself a break!”

  1. Kristen Avatar

    You nailed it. We are all older. Those of us who were in our teens in the 80’s are in our 50’s now. I’m 51 and love this band as much as I ever did but I just can’t do what I did when I was younger. And I’m not really sure I want to either. I’ll still go to a show almost any chance I get. But I prefer the smaller venues now. Like you, I loathe festivals. I don’t have the time or energy to follow every little thing they do, and honestly I think someone in their 50’s with walls covered in posters is kind of pathetic. Anyway, great post! I think there are so many of us that will relate to it.

Hey there, thanks for joining the conversation. I’m happy to read your respectful comments and opinions, so type away! 🙂 -R

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