In praise of fangirls and fanboys



Scrolling through the photos of singer Sam Smith's recent show in Detroit, I came across the above image. It is amazing. First up, it's a great painting. Sure, it looks as much like a young Stewart Lee as it does the Sam Smith fellow, but perhaps I say that because I myself am a fanboy for Stewart Lee.

I love the idea that this young woman not only painted an image of her pop hero, but she felt compelled to bring it with her to the concert, which she had good seats for, and then held it aloft. The look on her face is great, too — total pride, enjoyment.

What's the most embarrassing fanperson moment you ever had? I once gave two things to the Minneapolis-based punk band Hüsker Dü in 1984 or 1985. I was a big fan of their Zen Arcade record, so I gave them this giant weird ceramic sculpture based on it (because, what touring band doesn't want some teenage kid's art that is large and very fragile). Also, far more embarrassingly, I gave them a cassette tape I'd made of my favorite songs, WITH MY HORRIBLE TEENAGE POEMS BEING SPOKEN IN-BETWEEN SOME OF THE SONGS. Is that the most embarrassing thing anyone has ever done? Probably close.

So let's praise this young lady again for showing restraint along with her own artistic devotion.