I have tried to rationalize for a number of people my fanaticism. This past week, Bruce Springsteen released a new album. Some have asked me, "what do you think?" and I have to reply with a question of my own: "Are you sure you want to hear what I think?" See, I'm already set. I'm that part of the demographic that pre-ordered the CD, but also the digital download so that I would be able to listen to it at midnight on the day that it was released. Midnight on the east coast. That means I was able to hear it before I went to bed the night before it was officially released. Two days later, when it arrived by mail, I was already familiar with all twelve tracks. I was also familiar with all the detractors who wanted to point out that a number of these tracks were already available in different forms, and a couple of them are cover versions of other songwriters' work.
So? It's Bruce. I'm pre-sold. Will I listen to it over the years with the same frequency that I have listened to "Born To Run," or "The Rising?" Time will tell. For now, it's in heavy rotation because I want to find out if it will stand the test of time. Is there a song on this record that will provide the soundtrack for my life as it pushes forward into its sixth decade? Perhaps. Time will tell.
Meanwhile, it was the end of this past week that brought the next wave of fanaticism to the fore. The Denver Broncos won the American Football Conference Championship. They defeated the New England Patriots for the opportunity to play in their franchise's seventh Super Bowl. I was there for the previous six, and I'll be glued to the broadcast come Super Sunday. Twenty years after I adopted California, I'm still immersed in the games played each Autumn on the other side of the Rocky Mountains. With two very local professional football teams, I chose to cling to my orange and blue. I was pre-sold on the Broncos as well. My son never had a chance. He was raised in a world where the Broncos actually won the Super Bowls in which they played. His first two years on earth celebrated the legend that was John Elway. He was sent to Oakland public schools with the thought in his head that all that was good and right about professional football sprang from Denver. Not Oakland. I did this to him. While he has quietly endured the football versions of "Human Touch" and "Lucky Town," he has patiently endured while the next big thing was being created: another shot at winnign it all.
Is there some magical way in which these events all coalesce into something deep and meaningful? Probably not to anyone else, but I guess that's what being a fan is all about.