Saturday, July 16, 2011

Why I'm a Manilow Fan

I've been involved in the Manilow fan world in depth since 2006. My first encounter with fandom came at my first show in Las Vegas on my birthday 5 years ago. It was a positive experience. So much so, that I'm still close with that fan today (even though she's my daughter's age). Since that first encounter, I've had many other ones. Some good, some not so good, and some absolutely horrible. I've made some good friends, made some enemies, had enemies turn into friends, and choose to ignore the rest. I've been disillusioned and discouraged by fan behavior in the past and vented here on my blog numerous times.
Every now and then, after being away from the fan world, it happens. My faith in the "nice" factor is restored and I realize that not all fans are jealous, petty and vindictive. Tonight was one of those nights. Two fans (whom I've never met in person, by the way) took time out of their festivities tonight in Vegas to meet my daughter who was there for the weekend. She has heard me talk so much about the fan world, and one of these ladies actually took time out of her busy life to mail my daughter's wedding cake top to her two years ago (again, without us ever having met).
Barry has said often that his fans are unique. I've said that the friendships I've made over the last five years are priceless. But tonight, I also learned that there really is something special and unique about Manilow fans. When you meet these type of fans, it makes you proud to say that Barry actually brought us together.
Thanks Fran and Susan for welcoming Jillian into your world tonight. I hope some day to meet you in person, but for now, I treasure your friendship.
Tipping my hat to Barry (for bringing us all together),
Texas Fan

Sadly I never got to meet Fran in person. She passed away this past week. But although we only communicated through social media and email we shared many laughs, baseball stories, Manilow stories and I was with her during her son's college process. She was a proud mother, a loving wife and an amazing friend. I pray that God will give her family comfort during this time and that we all never miss another opportunity to tell our loved ones how much they mean to us.

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