Where’s the Bunny?

September 10, 2010

It’s been almost two years since I first read the blog piece about good fans going bad and the referenced Wikipedia page about CWS (Celebrity Worship Syndrome). My cursory reading of the wiki page left me thinking there were huge gaps in the scale; I certainly knew I didn’t quite fit the descriptions. I was so disturbed by my own behavior, I didn’t want to pursue any further information about CWS. Nevertheless, when I was getting ready to start this blog, I reviewed the page, and it seems that others have taken exception to the scale. I’ve been hesitant to highlight this because it might be the ultimate rationalization for fleeing treatment of Richard Armitage addiction, but when did that ever stop me? Plus, my public service gene demands that I bring it to your attention. ;-) That way you will be prepared if someone slaps you with this.

Earlier this year someone updated that wiki page to add a section called “Critical reflection on celebrity worship and mental health.” God Bless ‘Em. (Or maybe I was so addled I missed it the first time around?) It seems the methods of research for this “syndrome” may not have been scientifically applied and the researchers biased. If I were not so busy, I might read more, but maybe someone who is inclined will take it up. All I know is that I got a little antsy when I read that one of the CWS researchers is from the University of Leicester. Uh oh. Could that be one of RA’s relatives who is exasperated with all of us? Or is he someone on the town council who’s sick of hearing that maps of H___________ need to be printed after every tour bus of Radio 4 listeners comes through, or perhaps he read about the building permit needed for the 12 foot fence around the Armitage’s backyard. I don’t know. I don’t know. But then I wondered if this professor heard about the chocolate pants. That would make me wonder about someone’s sanity, and I fleetingly wondered if I might become so far gone I would send RA some chocolate pants. Oh, hell no! Well, not if I were in my right mind. Then I realized I could devise my own scale and make it sound scientific. I did have a thing for Fred Demara. Not quite sure he was my soul mate (but maybe), so I’m certain I can figure out something that sounds scientific.

In the great tradition of the Web playing doctor, I’ve devised a scale and below it is a poll for you to assure yourself honestly assess your situation:

Entertainment-social

This comprises attitudes of fans who gain great pleasure from laughing about chocolate pants sent to a celebrity when they’re not nauseous at the thought. Sometimes they even get sick laughing as they imagine the expression on the celebrity’s face when he receives the chocolate pants. But these fans have no desire to ever send the celebrity (or anyone else) some chocolate pants as actually doing that is sickening to them and they don’t know where in hell anyone would buy them anyway. Well, maybe they wouldn’t send their own chocolate pants if they ever did know where to buy them, but maybe send them as someone else’s just to see what happens, er, rather to embrace the humor of the perceived reaction of the celebrity upon receipt of the chocolate pants as long as they are sent through the post and not by using them as a missile during an interview of the celebrity, which would require being somewhere nearby and possibly being caught out as a nut.

Intense-personal

Intense-personal aspect of celebrity worship reflects intensive and compulsive feelings about sending chocolate pants to the celebrity, akin to the obsessional tendencies of fans often referred to in literature; for example “I share with my favorite celebrity a need to touch chocolate pants — a feeling that cannot be described in words” and “When something bad happens, I know my favorite celebrity would be refreshed by seeing some chocolate pants from me.”

Borderline-pathological

This dimension is typified by uncontrollable behaviors and fantasies regarding how the chocolate pants will be presented to their celebrities, such as “I have frequent thoughts about wearing chocolate pants while standing in front of my favorite celebrity, even when I don’t want to” and “my favorite celebrity would immediately come to my rescue if something were to happen to my chocolate pants.”

Disclaimer for idiots who think this is serious: NO, nothing I’ve said about anyone in Leicester or the Armitage family is real. Well, except that one of the CWS researchers really is a professor from the University of Leicester — according to Wikipedia.

I ran across this in my uh research for this post: Inkblot Test. If you have some time, take the test. Trust me you’ll like it. And many thanks to the creators of it for the title of this piece. [Note: the title of this piece was taken from this “test”]

edit:

I HATE it when I make a horrible typo or when I realize I made a horrible typo. Will I ever get over that? LOL!

22 Comments

  1. I set up a simple questionnaire to determine if you are compulsive about spelling. Please answer the following question.

    Do you hate it when you make a typo?

    o Yes
    o No

    If you chose “Yes” then you are diagnosed with OSD or Obesive Speeling DIssorder. ;-)

  2. Thanks for pointing me to that additional information about the legitimacy of the CWS. BTW did you see that one of the External Links points to a blog called http://blogilow.com/ which purports to be a scholarly place to discuss the concepts of fans, fandom and celebrity.

  3. @ bccmee,

    Ya think? LOL! Maybe that’s one reason I was almost the city champ at the spelling bee. :D

    @kaprekar,

    I’ve read several pieces on that blog, and I’ve got two books about fandom on order. Right now my take on things if is If a fan thinks they have a personal relationship with a celebrity or tries to forge one, they have gone too far. If their interest impacts their life negatively or the celebrity’s, they’ve gone too far.

  4. And you should read the piece about fan gangs on that blog. Very interesting.

  5. From the scholarly site:

    “All comments will be moderated and I won’t be allowing the flaming or immature crap that goes on in some of the fandoms. If you want to have an adult conversation about fans, fandoms, and celebrity, you’re welcome to participate. If you just want to act like a pit bull and attack people left and right, there’s plenty of fandoms where you can get your jollies. Just go away and leave the adults alone. That doesn’t mean you have to agree with us. It just means you have to express your disagreement in a mature, intelligent fashion.”

    I respect what those people are trying to address at that blog, but do they have to call it “scholarly?” Or maybe I need to adjust my idea of scholarly speech. LOL!

  6. No it’s not scholarly in my opinion – they are just trying to distance themselves from being ‘fannish’ I think. Having read a few now, I’m a bit disappointed that the articles aren’t more ‘meaty’. But it’s worth a look.

  7. OMG I did that inkblot test!! I answered sensibly and I’m considered 76% crazy. Tomorrow I have to answer as a perv!! LOL
    Why did bunny made me think about sheets, between them that is???

  8. I typed in all the answers the first time I took it, and I was only 24% crazy but boring. The second time I was 94% crazy. LOL!

  9. Ooh, I don’t even want to touch the bunny statement. :D

  10. “Nevertheless, when I was getting ready to start this blog, I reviewed the page, and it seems that others have taken exception to the scale. I’ve been hesitant to highlight this because it might be the ultimate rationalization for fleeing treatment of Richard Armitage addiction, but when did that ever stop me? ”

    Seriously? “The ulitmate rationalisation”? What school of thought is that from? Heh.

  11. It’s bs. You didn’t see my tongue in my cheek when I said that? I hope it was apparent but maybe not. LOL!

    In the meantime, of course I am sane, and my obsession with Richard Armitage to the point of dedicating a blog to him is perfectly normal. ;-)

    All that aside, I can barely type since I just re-read the warning about comments on that fan blog referenced above. ROFLOL!! I need to apologize for sounding like I”m ridiculing those ladies. I don’t mean to at all, but I can’t keep a straight face when I read “scholarly” and then a warning like that one. LOL!

    Not to mention who would a thunk that B*rry M*n*l*w could inspire that much passion. LOL!

  12. Well, in her defence, she did also say, “quasi-scholarly”. She does supply info and some thought, also provides a service regarding fan communities.

    I don’t see anything wrong with her warnings and I think they fit in with the tone of her intro. You would have had to have extensive immersion and experience in these communities to understand the often virulent dynamics at play. I’m a veteran of a couple of them and also ran my own (other than fan) group at one time, and I would say civilised, polite behaviour is something you are lucky to get even in seemingly rarified environments. Blogs tend to be a little different because you can block and handily delete.

    If you want to lose your innocence and get a taste of the malicious stark-raving lunacy and pure poison within a fan community try this:

    http://www.journalfen.net/community/fandom_wank/1179304.html

    Perhaps it will help you understand why she attached this seemingly ridiculous proviso.

  13. In searching info on this actor last March/April, after seeing RH and N&S here, I came across numerous blogs, and ventured into lurking on forums. In a nutshell, I think it does no credit to the professed fandom, nor does it in any way do justice to the professional status, determined training, and very considerable talent of this actor, for 1) constant “Thud” (fantasy) nor to any sites/forums, that tolerate inter-fandom personal attacks on commenters (or bloggers). So I restrict my own review of blogs to those to which I relate in these terms. (Goodnes, how pompous!)

    Oh, and I’m not exactly immune to the physical/vocal attributes of said actor.

  14. @pi, I’ll have to look again at the reference to “scholarly.” Okay, I just looked, and it does say quasi. Fair enough. I guess I just think legalese and maybe a little more sophisticated language when someone uses a word like quasi. I certainly don’t expect to see “immature crap” and “like a pit bull.” LOL! I guess I”m mean, but that is hilarious, and yeah, it says something about how strong a moderator has to be to hold the “fans” at bay.

    Just so it’s clear, I’m not down on those ladies at that blog. Again, I respect what they’re trying to do, and they have some good articles. But my funny bone was tickled. Maybe I shouldn’t have shared that, and if the ladies at the blog read this, my apologies and keep up the good work.

  15. @fitzg,

    I hope I didn’t sound pompous, but I probably did. I still can’t help it that I got tickled.

  16. @Frenz

    I get your drift. You ‘re kinda cute when you giggle :).

  17. Thank you, pi. I don’t giggle enough. :lol:

  18. RAF: I meant I get pompous! NOT you! Never! You’re funny and serious at the same time.

    Cheers!

  19. 70% worrisome here. :) I was most grateful for the humorous taxonomy, though I still don’t see myself completely described. Maybe “simultaneous entranced and worried by the frequency with which chocolate pants overtake my thoughts but then transform into general reflections about the way the world is going …” :)

    Thanks for the blogilow link. (Also had no idea about Manilow, about whose work I am neutral, though I can imagine if you were a real fan the possibility of dancing with him on stage or getting a peck on the cheek could be intoxicating.)

    I found the post on fan gangs simultaneously intriguing and worrisome. I’m not sure I should say more here, but I suspect we all experience certain trends in Armitageworld that bother us (perhaps to different extents depending on which trend is under examination) and that seem to be potentiated / accelerated by particular segments of fans. Maybe to some extent our own writing embodies those trends (I know that I see some blogs that way and that certain readers see my blog that way.) I blog because (a) I can’t seem to stop and (b) it lets me say what I want (and those things may be related), but I hope me and richard readers and commentators are never seen as part of a gang in the sense of trying to enforce either a normative behavior or a particular attitude (though it’s hard to avoid the latter, as that’s what makes the blog distinctive).

  20. […] Be sure to read "Where's the Bunny" and "Are You A Fangirl?" to ensure you are adequately indoctrinated into this fine […]

  21. Full-length pants (trousers) or underpants (knickers)? Frankly, I’m having trouble picturing either. Could you post a link to a purchasing site for, you know, pictures of said object? For educational purposes. Not that I would ever buy any. To send to anyone.

  22. […] polyamorous fangirling. We talked a lot as well, around the time I started blogging, about “celebrity worship syndrome” and whether we might be suffering. Do we “worship” Richard Armitage in more than […]


Comments RSS TrackBack Identifier URI

Your Thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s