Am I part of a fandom? I don't know. If Fandom implies lengthy conversations on the internet on a topic then, no. It isn't that I am too cool for that as I am too shy for that. Public interaction is not my best thing.
But there are some things that over the years I have been unusually attached to. I just want to say at the start of this post that if you have any illusions at all that I am, or have ever been, cool they are about to die. This post was super embarrassing to write. Sit back and relax as I take you on a journey of my inner nerd.
The Dragonriders of Pern
Yeah, there is some problematic as shit stuff going on in these books. Eleven-year-old Tara didn't notice it, and now the books are part of my psyche. Which means that while I 100%acknowledge that the problematic is happening my brain likes to skip over those aspects.
When I was thirteen, I write a fan letter to Anne McCaffrey basically gushing about all the things. I may have also sent her my fanfiction. If I did, I blocked it out, but it is not out of the realm of possibility. She sent me a postcard with Masterharper Robinton and Zair on it.
I have six boxes still at my mother house. Everything I own in the world that is not in my apartment. It shrinks every time I go back. One entire box is filled with Pern books. First editions and British Editions from my grandmother, the Dragonlover's Guide to Per, The Atlas of Pern, the goddamn People of Pern. There are books that I picked up at flea markets with the price written on the cover in marker and books so well read that the pages fall out like well-loved autumn leaves. I still haven't given them up.
My husband was away last weekend, and I rewatched Newsies. It has been a couple of years. There was a time when I was eleven when I watched this movie on repeat. To illustrate my obsession: I have had the VHS (I am so old), the cassette tape (seriously, so old), upgraded to the CD (getting with it!), the DVD (audio commentary FTW) and now the digital iTunes version of both the music and movie. Also, the soundtrack for the Broadway play. Which I have only not seen because of my life choice to live overseas. When I watched Newsies, again I was reminded of how much the entire movie has been burned into my cerebral cortex. I know not only every line but the smart ass background ad-libs and every facial expression. If pressed I could still do the choreography. It is more than slightly terrifying that so much of my brain is being taken up by this. And somewhere, in my mother's attic most likely, there is some terrible fanfiction written my twelve-year-old, Tara. Honestly, will sixth grade me ever stop embarrassing me.
LOOK WHAT I FOUND TODAY! Newsies Gifs Tumblr My life is now complete.
I can never understand people who think that this isn't a realistic depiction of a mother-daughter relationship. It is creepily my mother and me. Rory's first day at college is so close to mine that I am slightly convinced that they followed us around. I have probably watched the series through in it's entirely five or six times over the years. Even the last two seasons which is weird because I mentally edit them out of my mental picture of the series aside from the occasional pithy one-liner.
I haven't watched the revival A Year in the Life. I have them waiting but I haven't been able to bite the bullet yet (no spoilers please!) I am scared that I won't like them and then that will ruin my love for the first five seasons. At this point I might wait until I go to the States in the summer and watch them with my mom.
The West Wing
Raise your hand if you wanted to be CJ Craig when you grew up.
I love the romantisism and idealism of this show. However many mistakes the characters make they genuinely are doing their best for American and have an America centered approach. I still want the real world to work that way. The first five seasons are the best. Much like Gilmore Girls The West Wing suffered when it changed writers. As an entertaining exercise I once cast friends/coworkers (listen, they are pretty much the same think in small international schools. But these were my legit friends who just happened to be coworkers.) I ended up as Josh.
I was going to watch them when the election happened but now I am unsure of whether or not that will make me feel better or just prod an open wound.
I kind of hate that the whole world loved Hamilton because it diffused my love for it. I just feel that when you love something that everyone else likes, somehow your love is less valid. I realized that that makes no sense.
Hype aside... I love every single thing about this. I am meeting friends in NYC this summer. We are flying in from five different continents. The reason? To hang out and see one another. The other reason? Hamilton tickets. I am getting shirts made. #InternationalHamFam (no one steal my hashtag) (but you can be part of the club if you want)
BTW: Lin Manuel Miranda has been tweeting about watching Gilmore Girls for the first time this week and I CANNOT HANDLE IT. *shrieks *actually doesn't because that would draw attention *lurks behind curtain so creepy staring isn't noticable.
Disclosure: This section could also have been Musicals in General or Lin Manuel Miranda in Particular. I am basically a fangirl of both.
I work at a school, and I work with girls. Basically, Mean Girls tells you everything that you need to know about either of those things. I referenced it once while comforting a student who was concerned that high school was not the best time in her life. She is one that still keeps in contact with me.
Almost three years ago on the tenth anniversary of the movies release I had a dinner party with friends. And had t-shirts made. Because that is how I role.
I love everything about this show. It is at once full of the zeitgeist and yet also timeless. I mentioned it to a student (the same student I talked Mean Girls with), and she went away and watched it. She couldn't get over the fashion choices even though she liked the show. It kills me that it was canceled so soon. I am still worried about Rickie. I want him to have grown up and gotten married to some great guy and just be effortlessly happy. That is what happens after the series end in my head. I loved Angela and all that, but Rickie's story arch is the one that stays with me.
Star Trek: The Next Generation
Picard is the best captain. You can have a differing opinion, but I am afraid that science has proven that you are wrong. Some of my best childhood memories of my father involve watching this show with him.
I admit that I am not the world authority on all things Star Trek: TNG. There is WAY too much competition. Still, I have watched all the episodes and do have strong opinions about the show. Example: Geordi should have had more episodes. He was the best and the shows where he is the focus tend to be my favorite.
The Babysitter's Club
This one I grew out of. Thank God. But man, I was so obsessed from age 6-10. I haven't reread any of them. I have no confidence that they would stand up to rereading. There was so much wrong with them not the least of which was the fact that all of the characters acted three years older than they really were. That includes the kids. Think about it...
Things I loved:
- The chapter describing each girl (not the one describing the club- always skip) and what they are wearing. Oh, my God was Claudia an awesome dresser. I will even go so far as to say that she was so avant-guarde that she is probably still stylish. #Protohipster
- The parts that were "handwritten". I was so impressed with myself that I could tell their handwriting apart.
- Logan and Mary Anne
- All things Claudia Kishi- Did anyone else notice that Lane in Gilmore Girls is forced to hid her real likes and personality from her parents in the same way that Claudia is?
- All things super special (ermahgerd: camp, cruises, shipwrecked, general crazy vacations...)
Much like the Star Trek admission, this one is difficult because I always feel as if someone is going to call me out on not being a real fan. I have read the books multiple times and have seen all the movies (most only once). My husband has been reading them to me in German as a language exercise (I have not become more fluent, but I can talk about the weirdness of some of the translation choices.) I have spent more time than is healthy thinking about the minutia and larger themes. I have not in fact dedicated my life to the collection of HP memorabilia.