Understanding and Explaining Fandom in 2018

Understanding and Explaining Fandom in 2018

There are many aspects of being a fan. With so many different fandoms it can be confusing, but rest assured every one is the same.

A fan is described as a person with an obsessive interest in and enthusiasm for something. You can utilize that sentence to describe just about anyone who likes anything. Just Google anything from Star Wars to Pokemon and you will quickly recognize the deep roots and fandom that is associated with anything.

It’ s a great feeling to be walking anywhere, down the street, at work, in the grocery store and you recognize someone who has a similar interest and passion for something as you do. Example, I live in the St. Louis Metropolitan area and when it comes to football and teams to be fans of, I for the longest time at least 25 years have been a Pittsburgh Steelers fan.

So when I see a Steelers fan in St. Louis I give the nod and maybe even stop and talk a little shop. Just like being a blues fan and seeing a fellow fan and yelling BLUEEESSSSS! or LET”S GO BLUES! Or receiving a compliment on a stormtrooper t-shirt and telling a short story of where I bought it and why.

Being a fan is usually tradition. Passed down through the generations. So, you are born into it. I was born into being a Blues and Cardinals fan and traditions of opening day at Busch Stadium and the Towel Man at Blues games. This sounds all rainbows and sunshine. Let me tell you something, there is a darker side of fandom.

Being a fan can have a negative impact on your day to day livelihood. It starts to take over every aspect of your life. You start to eat, sleep, breathe your new found love. You wake in the morning thinking about it while you eat breakfast and getting dressed and then while driving to work.  The obsession starts in and it starts to affect your mood. Because how your team goes, you go. And it’s not even just in sports. Look at the replies to this Disney Movie bracket on Twitter.

If your team goes through some struggles you start to go through a mixture of emotions. Denial sets in and you think this is just a funk and everything will get back to normal. When the realization of what is going on it’s too late. Someone needs to take responsibility for who has done this to you.

You blame certain players, coaches, General Managers and even commentators of your favorite team’s games on radio and television. You even fall into a dark black hole and start to blame and argue with other fans who have the same ambitions and hopes for your team as you do. And even when one of the players you “hate” comes through for your team or is playing well, you are still dissatisfied.

Whether you are at Busch Stadium, Scottrade Center, a local bar or home in front of the television, you can guarantee a few things. You will be surrounded by people who love what you love, hope for what you are hoping for. Part of Cardinal nation or all together Bleeding Blue. The denial, judgment, screaming, arguing, cheering, high-five giving and piling into stadiums is all why we are the FAN in FANATIC.

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