Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Crazy Manilow fans on Facebook

Yes, it's been awhile since I've posted here. What can I say? Life, work, children, a grandchild and other activities consume most of my free time these days. I keep loose track of the goings on in the Manilow world still, mostly via Facebook and Twitter. I rarely, if ever, sign on to the Manilow Network or the Barrynet any more.

Today, instead of focusing on the album, his show (will he won't he stay in Vegas) and his song journals on YouTube (which I LOVE), or his recent decision to become a spokesperson for AFib (commendable), it's time for another rant. What can I say, I'm in a rant kind of a mood today.

The topic? What else...crazy fans. Specifically crazy fans on Facebook. I actually think they all moved over there once Barry started writing notes on his Facebook page. It's like bees to honey, buzzards hovering over a kill, or college students showing up anywhere beer is served. Wherever he goes, they will follow. And here's the even more annoying fact...not only do they follow him, they latch on to his friends, collaborators and the people that work for him; "friending" away in hopes that one day he will notice them. Or make a connection with someone in his "inner circle" that might get them in there too.

What got me started today? A fan posted on Suzanne Somer's wall on a comment she made about having dinner with Barry last night. I knew when I saw that, the crazies would be there--and of course, they were. One "well intentioned fan" proceeded to tell her about a procedure that a relative had done for Afib, where it was done, and how successful it was and asked if she could pass the information along to Barry. Ok...I'm sure it was well intentioned. But come on people. When are we going to let the guy live his own life?

While I'm at it, why do these same fans have conversations with each other on his post feeds? Isn't that what private messaging is for or even personal wall posts? Why do they find it necessary to go back and forth on one of his "notes" to one another as if they were having a one-on-one conversation?

This whole fan world continues to make me shake my head in complete unbelief. You would think that after almost five years I would accept the fact that it defies all sense of human reason, but the rational person in me can't seem to understand it or come to terms with its craziness.

Barry says he likes Ron Paul (well, not really), but let's all jump on the Ron Paul bandwagon. Barry likes dogs, let's all go out and get a dog (a Beagle or a Lab). Barry likes jazz, let's all become jazz fans. Barry eats at Mon Ami Gambi, let's all make that our favorite restaurant. Barry has an iPhone, let's run out and get one. Barry makes a "boob" comment in a show, let's all wear low cut dresses to the shows and wear inappropriate clothing for our ages. You get the picture.

Here's a cold hard fact: Barry has a life and he could care less about what you and I do while we are living ours. "Friending" his friends, posting on their walls, or cozying up to them in Vegas isn't going to get you into his life. What did he tell a recent interviewer, "you only become a part of my private life if I invite you in." These tactics are NOT going to get you an invitation.

Rant over,
Texas Fan


Michele said...

Interesting comments. While we all agree there are some out there in the yellow dresses and first to stand..the "fans" as you call them are basically harmless and enjoy the people they are friending. I don't think the majority believe they will ever be invited into his world. But they have a good time and make good friends along the way.
I pay top dollar to see him, he comes out and gives me my money's worth..I don't ask for more..but I do have my opinions on all things Barry, so if I am asked..I answer. But they are just my opinions..and not written in stone!!!

texas_fan said...

Everyone is entitled to their opinion Michele, but the fans I speak of ARE delusional and I have to say they are annoying. I wasn't speaking of the "majority" of the fans, just the few that continue to post over and over again on every single feed. But then again, this is my blog and my opinion is my opinion.

NighDarke said...

LOL, I know the type. They're rather scary really, I'm glad the man has security!

For some of them I think what they want is a response, any response, to validate their existence. Generally, someone lonely and insecure, someone with no life honestly, will behave that way. Getting noticed by someone famous makes them feel like they're not a worthless nobody, which at their core is how they see themselves.

Then of course there are the delusional nuts who have fallen in love with the image of BARRY MANILOW. Become obsessed. The fact that they don't know the MAN at all, don't know Barry, doesn't register with them. They have their fantasy of what Barry is all about, how he is, how he feels, what he thinks, what he wants, and to them it's real. They might want to listen to the lyrics of his song 'Shadow Man' LOL.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you. I love the music and the emotions felt from the lyrics. I love the delivery of those lyrics and the performance at a live show. I have been a fan for over 30 years but I would never behave in the way you describe. Good on you for pointing this out to 'others' who should know better.

Anonymous said...

Oh brother, I know that not too long ago I asked you to write another topic on your blog and I do love this one. However, it opens up a can of worms. I have to think about my reply, if any, that I might offer and I need to be careful so that I'm not dragged through the mud again by another fan for my comments on a topic you had some time ago.

Like you said, it's your blog and you can post what you want and have any opinion you want.

Thanks, another gem.


Michele said...

Suzanne, there are a few out there that scare the crap out of me..I keep my distance. I was at a convention and an attractive woman was at our table..she was a medical professional with many degrees..but what upset me was her stating to her niece that she had just picked up her wedding gown for her marriage to Barry in the near future. Hence, I and my friends moved to another table. They are out there..I'm just not, nor are my friends, in that group. I am annoyed by some and their musings but I just ignore them..when they go off on tangents, I've learned not to read any of it.

Anonymous said...

Bravo Suzanne! You hit the nail on the head with this topic and I'm sure you have already made sauce from the tomatoes thrown your way in protest.

The sad part is that those who are offended by your viewpoint are the ones who might identify with it the most and the truth makes them uncomfortable. The continuous behavior of the minority of fans who do this makes it bad for the majority who know how to handle their fandom and respect Barry and his private life. You are so right, the man is never going to be their friend as he has made that clear. Imagine what his staff says behind closed doors when they deal with these fans on a regular basis? I'm not sure I would be pleased to know that people are laughing behind my back and making comments about my level of sanity. The scary part is that this minority of delusional fans should consider placing their money and time into some therapy and giving Barry and his crew some space.

What I would like to ask some of these extreme fans is "when is enough going to be enough when it comes to your quest for Barry?"

Suzanne, keep doing what you are doing. This all makes sense and it's a topic that is long overdue and definitely discussed in the fan world. Too many won't say what you had the courage to say because of fear of being attacked. Thank goodness for a healthy dose of reality!

texas_fan said...

I'm more than willing to take the heat. After all, what have I got to lose? And perhaps someone somewhere might open their eyes and take the blinders off. Then again, hell might freeze over.

Anonymous said...


What you say may or may not have validity, therefore I neither agree or disagree. However what I find curious and a bit suspicious is why you care so much? Why is what others do or say in relation to comments to Barry or befriending people in his camp such a hot button to you and others who have posted?

It seems to me, and it's only my opinion, that what they do is somehow appealing, something you or others would like to do, but either for lack of guts or perhaps fear of rejection, won't go out on a limb and give it a shot. There's an underlying tone of jealousy in the statements.

If they want to believe they'll become his friend or friends with people he knows, so be it. If it makes them happy, why should it be anyone's else's business to put them down or analyze what they do.

Like someone who's given up an addiction in their life, who now want everyone else to get on board and join the crusade to not smoke, drink, eat, whatever. For what ever reason, that are none of my business, many have been full throttle in unhealthy fandom, and have found a need for recovery which has caused them to take the opposite approach of obsession, proclaiming they are not obsessed.

For me, unless someone or a group is being hurt, if I see danger, then I'll step up to the plate and speak. But if it's harmless, live and let live. Everyone has their own way of dealing with life. Why give negativity to anyone or their actions.

texas_fan said...

Why is that whenever we (those of us who disagree with this type of fan behavior) post comments about it, we're automatically jealous. I can assure you that does not motivate me in the least. I am NOT jealous of any of these fans. Granted, my fandom has subsided over the last few years, but I NEVER behaved this way and I would have been ashamed if I did.

I speak out against this type of behavior because I think it sheds negative light on Manilow fans and on Barry as well. And I think that there is a point when you have to speak out against it. Everyone (and I mean everyone) is terrified of speaking up. Just look at the number of "anonymous" posts commenting on my blog. It's pretty clear that they are afraid of the backlash. When a group is afraid of another group, that's bullying.

As I said, I'm all for people having differing opinions. And I post every comment that I receive. It may be that we have to agree to disagree but these types of obsessions are NOT healthy for the fan or the fan community.

Jill said...

I actually agree with you. Too many people live and die with whatecer news they can get about Barry, He, or his friends, will likely never be "friends" to fans. He is an exteremely private person. He chooses to be so for his won private reasons. I remember when I was a kid we tried to be just like our "heros". Trouble was it was a phase which we soon outgrew as we grew. I look back on such actions and those of some Manilow fans and wonder what is missing in their lives that makes them life vicariously through others.

Anonymous said...

Things will never change and these people just get worse as time goes by. They are a joke amongst the Manilow Team, and the only good they are to Barry Manilow is easy and alot of money in the bank. Though their asses are kissed for the money, they are nothing but a group of loons and cheap entertainment for all. I have heard it myself from staffers. You are right Suzanne with everything you wrote and jealousy does not even compute with their craziness. They want people to be jealous and of what? How ridiculous they look in the eyes of Manilow. They need to accept the fact now, they will never even get a glimpse into the Manilow circle, ever.

Survivor said...

Wow Suzanne you have definitely hit some nerves!!! Wouldn't like to guess what you are getting behind the scenes!
I agree with the comments and thank you as usual for speaking out about this. I also agree that it shines a very unhealthy and 'unfunny' light on being a Barry Manilow fan. It's for all the reasons you have discussed that has me taking a back seat rather than voicing my enjoyment of being a fan I do it quietly and with friends who behave with dignity and respect.
Just another little observation recently is people who support Barry's charity Desert Paws...why? They don't live in PS so why that particular animal charity, why not one in your own local community? I think I know the answer to that one!!

Anonymous said...

The only reason I posted as anonymous is because it was easier, I really don't want to set up an account. I speak out often with no fear. I don't care if people agree or disagree and never hide behind what I say, as many do. It's the differences that make life interesting.

The reason I said "jealous" is because I still find no valid reason why anyone cares what someone else does. If there's danger involved, than by all means speak out to the powers that can help. But if you just disagree with what others find fun or fulfilling, to their own lives, who are any of us to pass judgment. And in reading the comments, that's what it is, mean spirited judgment against another whose actions you don't agree with or understand and clearly don't want to participate in, yet it's a bone of contention many gnaw at, constantly.

I'm not a sports fan, could care less, but I admire how people support their teams, paint their face for a game, wear jersey's all season. I don't get it, I don't do it, but if they're having fun, go for it. Life is too short not to.

I've been on the receiving end of nasty people who deny caring yet invade what I do. I have no idea for what reason, beyond jealousy. They've written horrible lies about me, slander, liable. None of it was based on any truth or fact, just what they created in their own minds. They've dragged my children into it. I've been threatened and for a time had a stalker... all because I write about Barry, his music and have met him. They don't want to do what I do, yet they feel it's their business that I don't do it either.

I took legal action and then took the high road. If they choose to lie, if that makes them happy, if my life is so interesting so be it. The people who need to know the truth do and that's really all that matters. The handful of people I call friend in this area are true friends. The rest think I'm queen snob as I do little socializing and again, so be it. I don't care what they do, and likewise I want the same in return.

As for negativity. I think seeing bickering, dissension and put downs fan to fan is far more harmful to Barry than the few silly people who perhaps have taken fandom too far. I think at the end of the day, they are doing it out of love and loyalty to their idol and will cause no harm. Each and every person has made Barry's career what it is, and no doubt he appreciates it.

If people want to see him once a year or live at the Paris for his entire contract, I could care less. If they're happy and hurt no one, go for it. All I need to worry about is myself!

Helen Holdun

texas_fan said...

I wasn't referring to you when I mentioned the anonymous comments. I was referring to the ones in agreement with me that were afraid to post their names due to the backlash, which trust me, have experienced it first hand.

Just because you don't find a valid reason, it doesn't mean their reasons (and mine) aren't valid. Why do you care what I do? You obviously care enough to comment. I think the reason people care so much is because they have been on the receiving end of some of these fans behaviors more than once. They've been shoved, pushed, received vicious hateful comments and looks, yelled at across the casino floor and had their names drug through the mud just like you say yours has been. These fans have no problem bullying other fans at the show, shoving them out of the way to get a handshake in the theater or pushing them out of the way as Barry walks by so they can grab him for a picture. They have accosted other fans physically numerous times just because they disagreed with a review or a blog post.

Many of us (speaking for those who have this opinion) have also been trashed, stalked, harassed and otherwise treated like 2nd class fans in the fan world.Those "blameless" idolizers are NOT without fault here so let's all pull our heads out of the sand and call a spade a spade.

As for your fan problems, I'm sorry that people have treated you this way. I don't condone it. But neither should anyone condone the way "we" have been treated as well. Using the claim that "it doesn't hurt anyone" just doesn't fly.

Survivor said...

I think the behaviour of some fans does hurt Barry! I squirm when I think of him reading, seeing and hearing some of this. These so called fans are ridiculed by the outside world and that ridicule then turns on Barry!! Anyone who thinks it doesn't hurt Barry needs to think again.

Anonymous said...

One anonymous person commented how some fans are being laughed at, but they will never believe that is true. Just because you've been befriended by TPTB, doesn't mean they like you. It's a business, they know which side of the bread their butter is on.

Barry has said several times over the years when he comments on fans who live their lives around him, "GET A LIFE". He wants people to just enjoy his music and not get so wrapped up in the person. Let's face it, we've all had our moments of obsession especially at the beginning, I'll admit that, but fortunately most of us caught ourselves before it got out of hand and wasn't fun anymore because it became too serious.

Suzanne, is this topic the one you've received the most comments on, whether positive or negative? It has to be because it touches home with a lot of fans. I know if I was the first one to stand, and always being seen night after night and Barry tells me to sit down, I'd be mortified and get tickets for the last row in the theater from that moment on.

NighDarke said...

The ones who buy all this CD's and DVD's, go to every show they possibly can and then pretty much leave it at that aren't the issue to me. They're not hurting anyone and they're having fun, I say let them.

It's the fans who go overboard, who try everything possible to get into Barry's inner circle any way they can, who go on and on and on about how much they love him and how they need him to know, how they want him and will wait for him because in their minds someday it'll happen, the ones who jump on the bandwagon and "like" anything he mentions and get all in the face of anyone who says anything they see as "dissing" Barry... those are the fans I have a problem with.

Those type ruin the fandom for the rest of us. They give all of us a bad name and reputation, because let's face it, it's the bad that the civilians see because the bad stand out. Barry also can't be pleased with that when he sees it either. How creepy must that be to him? How unsettling? And sometimes, how scary?

Peachys Place said...

Hey Suzanne,
I'm a little late commenting on this, but you know me. LOL Your comments are right on point. The image that the fans project, whether they want to admit it or not, shine right back on Barry. Why over the years there are always comments about the "crazy Manilow" fans? When he is on stage, he is ours for however many minutes he is up there, but when the smoke clears and the lights go down - the time is his and it should remain that way. He shares his music with us and that is the only thing we have right to, not his address, not his personal time, etc. The threats and all of the other things happening to people just goes to show that something is not right; isn't the bullying done in school? Wow - nope I don't miss the Manilow fan world at all.

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