It was July 27, 2001. I was in Las Vegas, Nevada, standing outside of Sam Boyd Stadium for hours with my best friend in 115 degree heat. Sounds crazy, right? Who would do that? Who would risk dehydration, heat stroke, and who knows what else? What could be so important? Anyone who has ever loved a boy band knows the answer. My answer? ‘N Sync.
Yes, I love boy bands, and back in the day, ‘N Sync was my absolute favorite. I had all the necessities of the boy band frenzy: posters in my bedroom, scrapbooks, VHS tapes of all their TV performances (I know, VHS!), their CDs, books about them, pictures, and T-shirts. (One of which I considered my “lucky shirt” even though I have no idea what made it “lucky.” I wore it so many times that it has holes in it now. I also used to wear it every New Year’s Eve thinking it would bring me good luck in the new year.) On that ridiculously hot day in Vegas, I was waiting in line to get into ‘N Sync’s sound check. Since I was a member of their fan club, I had special privileges (naturally). My friend and I bought outfits just for the occasion. Mine included tie-dyed jeans from Old Navy and a tank top with a cowboy on it. I have no idea why I thought that was so cool. In case Justin Timberlake or JC Chasez chose us out of thousands of girls to whisk backstage, we wanted to look our very best.
|The actual lucky shirt!|
As anyone would have expected, nothing spectacular ever came from my love for ‘N Sync. I never met any of them, and certainly didn’t marry any of them like I dreamed about. The closest I ever came to meeting one of them was when my friend and I saw Danielle Fishel from Boy Meets World in Nordstrom. She was dating Lance Bass at the time. My friend said hello to her, but I was too star struck, so I stood behind a clothes rack. She said the guys were out of the country on tour. Bummer. But going to many of their concerts and just being a fan of theirs was really fun. Most of my best memories of my teen years involve them. Eventually, all my ‘N Sync memorabilia was either thrown away or shoved in boxes somewhere in a closet. My lucky shirt has been retired, and its only purpose now is to occupy space in a drawer. My dreams were shattered, right? Wrong. I grew up. When ‘N Sync faded away, so did my love for boy bands…or so I thought. Until now.
Last year, I saw a tweet from Lucy Hale who plays Aria on Pretty Little Liars that said her cousin was in a music video, and she included the link. I thought, that’s so cool. Hasn’t everyone wanted to be in a music video at one time or another? So, I clicked on the link, and I was introduced to One Direction. You’re probably saying, “Who?” Or maybe you’ve heard of them if there are teenagers in your life. They got their start on The X Factor UK in 2010 where they were mentored by Simon Cowell. After they came in third place, he signed them to his label. Now, it’s a British invasion! Well, British and Irish. Four of the guys are from England and one guy is from Ireland. They range in age from eighteen to twenty. At first, I went to YouTubeto listen to their other songs and see their music videos, and I was impressed by their real talent, but I resisted because I thought I was too old for boy bands. Then, I saw them on Saturday Night Live in April. After that, one night when I was procrastinating from writing my next novel, I watched my first One Direction interview on YouTube. These boys are hilarious! Between their accents and their wit and charm, I was hooked. I “liked” them on Facebook and followed them on Twitter. When they embarked on their Australian/New Zealand tour in April, I kept up with all of it through YouTube. British, Irish, and Australian accents! Win! It’s really cool that the fans are so dedicated and post so many videos and pictures for other fans around the world to enjoy. This is a definite improvement from the ‘N Sync days. Thank you, technology. And because of social media, the hysteria has intensified because fans can communicate directly with the boys. Since my new young adult novel includes the boy band phenomenon, I now consider watching One Direction videos “research.” That’s legit, right?
As we near the eleven year anniversary of that ‘N Sync concert in Vegas, I doubt I’ll be waiting in line in scorching temperatures for One Direction because I’m so mature now (insert sarcasm here), but I do have tickets to see their concert next summer. Some things never change, and in this case, I’m grateful. It’s so much fun to be part of the boy band craze!
Do you love boy bands? Did you ever do anything ridiculous to see your favorite band? Tell me all about it!
Nancy Scrofano is the editor of Good Humor Girl and the author of True Love Way. She is also the editor of The Chick Lit Bee, a book blog that promotes and celebrates women’s fiction, and she writes book reviews for a prestigious book review magazine. Nancy is at work on her next novel. For more information, please visit www.nancyscrofano.com.