Monday, April 8, 2013

Introducing Fandoms

I hear it all the time from my friends, "I can't date him if he doesn't watch Firefly" or "How have you never seen Doctor Who - we're not friends!"

Ask anyone I know, and they'll tell you Disney is my biggest fandom!
This is one school of thought to which I just can't subscribe. See, the thing is, I love introducing people to new fandoms. It's a brilliant feeling watching them watch or play or just be a part of something I love.

I wrote last Friday that I love hearing someone discuss something about which they are truly passionate. The inverse to this is also true: I love talking about my passions and sharing them with someone else. If we already have everything we love in common, what is left for us to share with one another.

I remember when someone shared Doctor Who with me. It was Christmas break of 2010, and I had just gone through the hardest thing I've ever been through. I had just started to come to terms with it (and maybe one day I'll tell you all about it, but not today) and a friend found me an escape.

As I sat there and watched, for the first time, these scenes he had seen so many times before, listened to the actors speak monologues and one-liners he had memorized, he watched me. He watched my eyes widen during a time of suspense. He watched me soften along with Rose as we both lost and found our Doctor. He watched me fall in love with moments and stories and he listened to me rant about what was to come - holding back his smirk of knowledge.

He later told me that he enjoyed watching me watch his favorite television show even more than he had enjoyed watching it through the first time.

I totally get that.

For me, it's not "You've never seen this, goodbye." Instead, it's "You've never seen this? Oh, I have to show you." It's little things like Llamas in Hats on YouTube, McKayla Maroney's gorgeous Amanar vault from the London Olympics. It's big things like Firefly and John Green novels. It's huge things like Walt Disney World.

There are few things I love more than grabbing someone's hand and leading them around my theme park, showing them the hidden secrets only a seasoned veteran would know about, teaching them to find Hidden Mickeys and on their own.

Sharing something you love is beautiful, and unlike sharing something physical, like your gum or a bite of your pie, it only grows as the people you love fall head over heels in front of your eyes. I can't wait to introduce someone to Doctor Who so I can experience what my friend did with me. And I can't wait for the next time someone shares something new with me.

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