Friday, January 30, 2009

Barry Manilow

Back when I was young and well off…well, doing better than I am now … I used to do Barry Manilow. Well, I didn’t exactly DO him but you know what I mean. I was definitely a world class Fanilow. I traveled around the country going to see him. I went to conventions, concerts, etc. I didn’t keep track but I would estimate that I probably saw at least a 100 concerts and that’s a conservative estimate.

It was good clean fun during my family raising years. When the kids went to their Dad’s for vacation, off my friends and I would go. This went on from 1980 through the mid-90’s. Then concert tickets went into the triple digits and I dug in my heels and refused to pay those prices. I read a quote in a financial book “The more you feed an addiction, the stronger it becomes.” This was my addiction and I went off of it cold turkey.

To my surprise, I found that I missed the other fans more than I missed Barry. I mean how many times can you pay big bucks to see Barry Manilow sing "I Write the Songs", you know? I was always mindful of whether I was getting enough bang for my buck during my heyday and I’m glad I stopped before my addiction became just a mindless habit.

Would I like to have the money back I spent on my hobby? Not for the concerts, each show was a delight but yes, I wish I hadn’t spent so much on travel, conventions, fan clubs, dressing room decorating, photo taking, etc. Some of it was just plain stupid. But I don’t regret those days or the life long friendships that resulted.

Amazingly, the friendships continue. I have friends all over the United States and Europe and my youngest daughter (who inherited my wanderlust) has taken advantage of these connections to couch surf her way around the world.

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