I’ve never really fangirled, nor belonged in a fandom. Until last year. When I came back from UK, after seeing how the Brits are unattached to social media , I swore I will avoid it. But broke that promise immediately when I found myself gushing and looking forward to a certain segment of a particular show. I fangirled and got so addicted to social media. I even stayed up til wee hours in the morning joining Twitter parties. It was a very interesting community. It brought life to my boring life. And I used my addiction to a good cause, because of that I was able to apply it to my work as a social media manager of a highly respectable institution.
I fangirled over this certain star. I admire her wit, authenticity, and tranparency in her eyes. I love that this star was very wise for her age. I love that I saw my self in her because of her two personas: she’s funny on the outside, melancholic on the inside.
Even though the hype have dwindled, I remained a fan. I look forward to her posts because she is a content maker, an intelligent one. I often wondered how it’s going to be if I finally have the chance to have a photo with her. I know her after-work locations are quite elusive, and since I live outside the city, the chances of meeting or even running into her is really close to impossible at this time.
But last Sunday, out of all the time and place, I was at my least favorite mall hanging out while waiting to pick my mother up from the airport. I saw her “colleague/friend”who I always see on social media with her, and upon seeing her, I knew I she must be inches away. And there she was, walking alongside with her.
I almost let out a silent scream, and told my sister I really want a picture with her because it’s going to be now or never. So we called first her “colleague/friend”, and she made us run after her. My sister tapped her shoulder, and she kept walking, like they could not hear us. So I finally mustered the guts to tap her shoulder and ask ” ****** can we have a picture with *****?”
So she stopped, after walking for 5 meters (yes we checked) and signaled ***** to stop and take picture with with me and I swear it was just super split seconds that I did not even get the chance to say “Hello”nor even say any pleasantries. It was brief second that I didn’t even see her face. They (her and her small entourage) weren’t warm, but you can not call them not accommodating, because they stopped and granted my photo op request.
My sister felt sad for me. I, too, felt a little sad, because it was not the kind of meeting that I was actually hoping for. Or maybe I was expecting too much. I mean, I know and have read in social media that she is really very awkward and shy around people, which surprised a lot of people even her own family, why she is in the entertainment industry. But there are also posts from other people who had the best meet-and-greet kind with her, and how they described it as surreal. Well good for them, mine was borderline What-the-fuck?!
It was very different when I met Divine Lee at a bloggers awards night some years ago. My goodness, she really did not disappoint! I was on a high when I went back to the hotel and I immediately posted my picture with her. In this case, I had to think twice. I even tried to be as reasonable as possible. I even had thoughts like:
Well, it is expected of her because people said she is really shy.
At least she stopped for a photo.
If I am not a fan, I can really mistake her as a snob.
Maybe they are afraid she’d get recognized and get mobbed, because it always happen you know?
Maybe her ‘colleague/friend’ intentionally did not stop because they can’t really hear us?
But what abou the twice tapping of shoulder, until she finally turned around?
Is it rude that I asked her (colleague/friend) to take a picture with ***** and not her?
Of course, I had other rebuttals in my head. But truthfully, I felt like a girlfriend in a bad relationship trying to make excuses for her asshole boyfriend. That is really the closest analogy that I can come up to get close to the actual feeling.
Honestly, it wasn’t the greatest fan experience. I posted my picture a day later and got a lot of Facebook Likes. Apparently, I have a lot of closet fans in my Facebook network. I did not post the story in my feed, because who knows? The fandom is really fierce and people who are a lot more emotionally involved (now that the hype is dwindling) are fighting for the spark to stay alive, more than ever.
The next day (and the following day), I no longer bothered checking the Twitter updates, the official hashtag, and whatever that’s going on. I just went on and realized that, that does it. Well, t’was a good year of gushing, stalking, and emotional involvement. It’s the right time to move on. So I did.
And that’s the story of the culmination of my fangirling.
Hopefully, if I ever I get another photo, she or her “colleague/friend”would be in a more accommodating mood.