Can we define U2 fandom?

By Line: ​Eric Shivers,

In my excitement
of finding this pic, I posted the image on my Facebook page, dedicated to my U2
fandom. I clearly stated that I had never seen the photo, which is true. Within
a few hours of the posting, someone made a comment that me not seeing a previously
released image of Bono didn’t make me fan enough of U2.

I’m a Fan: How I married U2 into my life without going to the altar By Eric Shivvers

I took offense to this
immediately. It was a natural reaction to a comment flung through cycberspace
by someone who doesn’t know me personally, but noticed my page dedicated to my
U2 fandom, and memoir, and took a cheap dig. Yes, the image was available to me
but I did not know it. Supposedly it was published in a book that sits on the
bookshelf behind me as I write this blog. I have cracked U2 & i a few times, but have never dived into it deeply. I just
have a knack for amassing all things published about U2, because I am a
collector as well, which is where I am drawing the line on defined fandom.


What gripes me the
most about being a fan, of anything, is the level to which your fandom lies.
Unlike earthquakes or tornadoes, there is no barometer created by science to
say how deep of a fan you are of U2. Take my friend in Canada, who has a whole
room dedicated to the Irishmen. One might think he is a super fan, right? Well,
I would agree with you, but he is also a down to earth guy, who has a passion
for encrusting himself in mirror chips and putting himself on the front rail
night after night last year on the 360 tour. In contrast, there is the fan who
turns to U2’s music in order to get them through life. In both cases, the level
of fandom is personal, which is really what our passion for U2 should be as we
carry them with us in our suitcase of life. It does not matter if you missed an
image of them or did not know that Bono housed Salaman Rushdie in his back
garden because those are technicalities.

Once found, they open you to more
discoveries, which is why I like this band. I
walk away from the narrow-mindedness of the comment, posted on Facebook, knowing
that I put myself out there for public scrutiny. However, we tend to act first
and then think later. I do it all the time and I am reminded by my better half
that taking the time to think things through before taking action is the best
way to handle any given situation. I greet others who are fans of U2 with the
same compassion. Instead of telling my story, I want to hear theirs because
that is important to me.

It gets me to think about how my life was touched as
well as garnering me insight to how U2 has built a “flock” of followers. Yes,
some have fallen off the bandwagon due to the creative output or musical
direction U2 has taken and that is okay. They were the original adopters once,
still considered by me as being a part of us, who were the true believers.  We, the current fans, carry the flag for those
previous to us, knowing full well that sometimes the weight of pole, from which
said U2 flag flies, can be a burden, but we hoist it, nevertheless, because we