Fandom: Finally Something About Vienna Teng
So let me tell you a secret about myself. Vienna Teng is aces in my book. Well, I suppose that's not that much of a secret. If you don't know about my embarrassing stories regarding the singer/songwriter Vienna Teng, feel free to ask me. Or you can try to find my secret (not-so-secret and long since unused) Tumblr for the gory recap. It's painful, entertaining and will be very on topic for later in this blog post.
Down to business, Vienna has a new album coming out, and she started a Kickstarter program for the funding of a music video she wants to do for one of her new songs. You can visit the link here, but what I want you to take notice of is the $5000 exclusive, "Spend A Day With Me."
Let's just say I was almost $5000 poorer, but I held off. Fortunately/unfortunately both of those two slots were purchased, so the temptation is removed from me, but man, wouldn't that have been cool? In my mind's eye, I can imagine how absolutely wonderful a day with Vienna Teng would be -- sharing a meal with her and six of my friends, perhaps playing some Settlers of Catan, listening to her sing songs, etc etc. It would be the ultimate fan experience.
And that's why I couldn't pony up the $5000. Because it would be interacting with her as a fan. I'm probably very strange, but I don't like interacting with people in such an unbalanced dynamic. This is the one thing I struggle with -- fandom. I'm all for liking stuff (to the surprise of many, I'd guess), but being a fan draws up some horrible imagery in my mind. For example, this, stuff like this that happens at Comic Con and even RTX, a convention I got back from in Austin back in July. All the screaming, cheering and mad rush to get people's autographs. These are supposed to be fan experiences --- the coolest experiences -- but I guess grumpy ol' me has a problem with it.
I don't know what it is, but the unbalanced relationship really gets to me. Whenever you really interact with the object of your fandom --- what is there to say? I love you. I love your work. You are an inspiration to me, etc etc. It's not like they haven't heard that before, and honestly, what are the chances that they are going to remember your name or face ten seconds after you meet them? Usually that's very unlikely. Maybe I'm too cynical, but one of the things that is important to me is genuineness and sincere interactions, and I don't feel like this is the case of when you are just a fan of someone. You aren't going to have a long, meaningful conversation with them (most likely.) And usually it ends up being awkward for you or for them. I think Los Angeles has it right. They act like they've been there before. Whenever they see a celebrity, it's not a big deal. Maybe a head nod, a hand shake or a wink, but that's it. There's no fawning over people and delirious screaming.
Anyways, back to why I didn't spend $5000, I think I might just be a bit haughty, but if/when I do have a real interaction with Vienna, I don't want to just be a fan. I want my writing or me to be someone she can be a fan of. That sounds so cocky, and I'm sorry. I'd rather have no relationship with her or anyone else rather than be a fan.
So what does all of this mean? Do I hate fans like the people I linked to previously? Kind of, but I'm trying not to. Who am I to tell people how they should like the things they like? I'm trying to be better about dismissing people because they like things I deem to be terrible and of no taste. Fandom just isn't for me. I don't want to be a fan. I want to be a friend. That makes me sound like a jerk, but this is what it is.
That being said, look forward to the next time I make a fool of myself in front of Vienna Teng. It will be so exciting.