Pat Parker18 July 2012 at 4:00amPosts: 2683 (0 today)Status: offline
This thread is something I’ve been thinking of writing for a little while and I’m finally getting around to it. Since it’s not specifically PG-related, I chose to place it here, so as not to bog down the PG-related discussions. Many of you might be bored by reading this – it’s okay, I get it, if you’ve heard it all before. Some of you might find it interesting, while others might find it a waste of time. No matter what you feel about this thread, all I ask is that if you read it and if you have a comment, please feel free to add your comments, but please refrain from being rude or vulgar toward me or anyone else who might post here. That’s my single request to you and I ask that you honor it as one adult to another.
I do hope that I can get to read about some of you who might be new(er) to the site. I also would love to read some of you who have been here for awhile and just want to pop in and say, “Hi” No matter what, I’m basically just trying to pull together a few of the older threads’ conversations and putting them into this one, “How do you do?” topic.
I’ll begin by saying that I’ve been here on the moon since the beginning – many incarnations ago and although I don’t know the exact date that I began commenting here, I know I’ve been here a long time and have seen many people come and go and come back again and go again, etc. It’s all good and I think what I like best about this place is that we do come here (at least initially) because of our common interest in Peter Gabriel. I know that’s what brought me here. I know that’s what keeps me here still. I can honestly say that this site – the Full Moon Club was the only fan site, networking site or whatever they’re called, that I have been a member of – up until facebook became popular. I then signed up to facebook and go there fairly routinely, yet this place is still my first and foremost place for learning about Peter Gabriel and his fans (lunatics). I’ve often said (and still do) that I will continue to come here – even if I’m the only one left here on the moon, talking to myself
Here’s my story in a nutshell (a very large nutshell, but a nutshell all the same) –
I’m 55 years old, born and raised and lived most of my life in Philadelphia, PA. Currently live in Lancaster, PA (@ 75 miles outside of Philly, but a world away from the city . I am a single woman, the youngest of a fairly large family, with lots of nieces and nephews and now great-nieces and nephews with whom I have a wonderful, loving relationship. As in all families, we have our crazy dynamics, but overall, I am very proud of everyone in my family and am so glad to be a member of it. I’m “Aunt Pat” to many (not all those who call me “Aunt Pat” are related to me by blood, but it’s okay, I love being an “auntie” to any/all).
I’ve had several different professions in my life, but my true love is nursing and I’ve done that now for nearly 20 years! I’ve been a legal secretary and have been a concert/event staff security person (working in many different capacities) for very large shows/events in the Philly and tri-state area). As much as I love nursing (and I do), I’ve always said that my event security job was (and still is) my all-time favorite job – it was part-time, and although it didn’t pay much, I didn’t do it for the money – I did it for the wonderful experience it gave me. I have not worked it since moving to Lancaster in 2008, but often think of working in it again – just for the fun of it.
I’ve recently taken a new position in nursing – it’s a big change for me, yet I’m up for the challenge (so to speak) and am only in the position a few weeks, but really like it so far. (I'm sure to expand on this topic at another time).
I am a very ethical, moral person and expect others to be the same way. I am honest at all costs; I am not afraid to defend myself or more importantly, others (especially those who I see being mistreated or misjudged) and as much as I can sometimes have a sharp, cutting tongue (especially if I’m hurt), I do not ever hold a grudge and I do not “hate” anyone. ("Hate" is not a word I use, even for inanimate objects). I am not mean, cruel or otherwise towards anyone and again, I don't expect anyone to treat me that way either. I respect everyone, regardless of who they are, what they do, what color, sex, creed, sexual orientation, financial status, etc. My parents were very good human beings – very hard working and instilled in all of us in the family those very same traits. My mom would often say to me, “Just remember, no one is any better than you are and you are no better than anyone else. Some of us can be better at something, but in the end, we’re all the same.” -- I live by this and I’m still surprised at my old age that not all people do.
So, some Peter stuff (since this is his website, right? LOL! ) –
I’ve been a fan since Genesis, when in 1974, I went to see my very first “teenage” concert with my brother (who has always had the BEST musical taste). That was it for me, then and there! Had Peter stayed with Genesis, well, that would have been okay with me, but I’m glad that he chose his own path because it gave me two bands to enjoy (yes, I’m still a Genesis fan and I like Phil Collins -- no discussion necessary -- I don't change my mind all that easily because I know what I like. ). I might as well get this out also – yes, I’m one of those die-hard fans that would just love, love, love to see PG with Genesis again – just one more time, but it doesn’t hurt to dream, does it? If it happens, it’s great! If it doesn’t happen, oh well!
So, I’ve been a fan a long time and of course, when I first became a fan, I was still in school. Used to make $10 / week for babysitting every Sat night and when I first began working at 18 years old, I didn’t make much money, but I still was able to buy a ticket to the shows I wanted to see -- Genesis, Peter Gabriel, Yes, ELO were some of my favorites back then. I have since said (and still do) that Peter Gabriel is “my drug of choice” – basically, music is my drug and there’s no rehab for me!
Everything in life is relative – as I began to make more money in my jobs (was a legal secretary before becoming a nurse and then began working in events also), ticket prices would increase, but I was able to make the shows.
I looked into “Peter Gabriel” fan clubs and found F.O.P.G. – Friends of Peter Gabriel and I subscribed to that for a bit (don’t have all the newsletters like some fans do, but I have all the correspondence I have ever had between PG’s office/team and myself).
It was during the SO tour that I actually wrote my first real "fan" letter to tell Peter how great the show had been. I never expected to hear back – after all, here I was a young woman (not a teenager) writing to a musician – I don’t think I told anyone that I had written the letter – how silly would that sound to hear a young professional woman writing fan letters to a celebrity – I have my pride, you know
I was surprised to get a letter back from PG’s office (FOPG) . . . and so began my correspondence with Penny (at the time) . . . then eventually, Tina. Over the years, I continued to subscribe to FOPG, The Box, RealWorld Notes, etc. I knew there were other fans around the world, but we didn’t yet have the internet and no way in which to communicate. I periodically would correspond with PG's office -- asking about any new records/tours, etc.
Then, came the internet and www.petergabriel.com -- I remember the first time I tried to go on the internet to check out the site – I was in work (working at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital on a night shift) and on my break, I wanted to check it out. So I searched for “Peter Gabriel” and one of the sites was a site about Gabriel’s angels or something and it was a porn site! I wanted to die! Here I was, in work, on my break and the first time I go on the internet, I’m on a porn site!!! Fortunately, one of the other nurses helped me get out of it, once he finished laughing (and looking at the site ).
As I became more familiar with the internet and had it on my own computer, I was able to follow PG’s doings a bit more . . . the Full Moon Club began and timidly at first, I posted some things on the forums – I especially remember Alex Storer and his “misheard lyrics” thread – there were some funny lyrics there. The site (this site) began to grow and more and more “lunatics” were on the forums as we awaited news of the soon-to-be released cd, “Up”.
The cd was released, the forums were alive with lunatics writing about everything/anything. We were all so excited to finally have something new from PG and the upcoming tour was promising to be wonderful (and it was!).
During that time (2001-onward), we lunatics would be on the site for hours on end – the place was hopping with excitement and many, many creative threads were started and we had word games, lyric games, etc., in addition to very heated discussions about politics, music, the world in general and then, of course, Peter Gabriel and the cd, the tour, etc. -- most of all, we were getting to know each other.
It was also during the Growing Up tour that we fans first started having gatherings before the show – after all, this was the first time we had the internet, met people on the site, but didn’t really “know” them in person. I organized a small pre-show gathering in Philly (and had written to invite Peter to attend -- it never hurts to ask the question! Although he couldn’t attend, Tina provided us with some nice goodies from Peter to help make our gathering fun). I met many lunatics during the course of the Growing Up tour – and to this very day, I remain friends with them. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years already.
Since those first “gatherings” and shows, I’ve had many great experiences and have formed some very deep bonds with lunatics and am grateful to PG and this site for that. I have also continued to correspond periodically with PG’s staff (Penny and I still send Christmas cards to each other ) and I think about how, so many years ago, I wrote a letter just telling PG how great the show was and how I’d been a fan for several years – never would I have imagined that I’d still be following him, his career and never would I have imagined that I’d meet people from all over the world, all walks of life simply by being a “fan”.
As much as I have been here (on the moon) for a long time, I have had times in my life when I am not able to actively participate here. However, every time I come back here, I am always happy to read (and learn about) new lunies here. There’s just something magical about it all – we have a common interest in PG and his music, yet we have so much more in common than we realize.
I’m sure I’ve bored most of you to tears, but I wanted to give a little history about myself and hope that you’re inspired to share some of your stories here also. I’m not sure how any one else feels, but for me, “lunatic” is a highly regarded title and I’m proud to be a lunatic! Least I forget, however, one of the "familunies" (my word for our family of lunatics) also bestowed upon me a title -- way back in the beginning and I cherish that title as well and sign off here with it . . .
Kind Regards to all,
The Indefatigable Pat Parker
I may do my life story on this thread down the line but honestly I've been exhausted the last few weeks and especially today as I am trying to quit smoking.
Down the road I will
Pat Parker20 July 2012 at 2:34amPosts: 2683 (0 today)Status: offline
Ah, Jen, yes, another thing we have in common -- ELO!
I first heard ELO (the album, "On The Third Day" -- or as I call it, "The Belly Button Album") a long, long time ago. I graduated high school and for my graduation gift, my mom was going to buy me my very own stereo system (not sure if she ever regretted that decision ) and with me not knowing a thing about what was good, my brother, Harry, (the same brother who introduced me to Genesis) took me to buy my stereo system -- I can sort of remember it being "pieced" together -- a Pioneer receiver/tuner, Advent speakers, can't remember the turntable -- anyway, while in the store, in order to "listen" I first asked to hear Genesis (by then I had been a fan for a whole whopping year and one half and knew all their stuff! ) -- the store didn't have any Genesis, but they did have ELO (and I had already been introduced to The Move (Jeff Lynne's first band) by, you guessed it, my brother Harry. So, we listened to album and I was sold -- on both the stereo system and the album (which I later bought and then began to follow them).
I hear ya on the life story here . . . there's plenty of time to add comments here and I just hope to learn more about each of us here on the moon.
Best of luck with the quitting smoking, Jen. It's a tough row to hoe, but it will be well worth it in the end!
Pat Parker20 July 2012 at 2:54amPosts: 2683 (0 today)Status: offline
Oh, I suppose I could add this bit of my life story here as well. I currently have a dog, named, Harry and as mentioned above several times, I have a brother named Harry. My dog Harry is not named after my brother and his full name (the dog, that is) is Harry Pawter -- he does this really neat thing with his paws -- and the shelter from where I adopted him had already named him. I was not going to keep the name because I did not want there to be any confusion between the two (Harry, the dog versus Harry, my brother). However, Harry, the dog is really "Harry" and I can't think of a better name for him, so whenever necessary, I clarify.
When I first got Harry (the dog) I thought of calling him, "HP" (For Harry Pawter) but realized that my sister in law calls my brother that -- "HP" (For Harry Parker) -- so, even with that, it could be confusing.
I worried at first that if I were telling stories about Harry (the dog) and said something like, "Harry sh*t on the rug." that my brother would begin to get some dirty looks from people and perhaps not be invited back to their houses . But, it's been okay so far -- I just have to clarify when I'm speaking to my family members, especially if I'm making a transition in the story that might lead to confusion.
But, I love both Harrys very much -- my brother is a wonderful human being and he has always been one of my favorite siblings. He's been my mentor in many areas of life and our birthdays are one week apart (with 10 years in between ). He lives in Lancaster County and raised his family here. He's a brilliant mind, but very unassuming; he's just retired from working as the Chief Archivist of the PA State LIbrary and Museum -- having had his Master's in American History -- specifically Pennsylvania, with his work concentrating on the Pennsylvania Abolitiion Society. He initially wanted to teach American History, but instead landed the job at the PA State Library and Museum, moved to the Lancaster area and has lived here ever since.
Harry (my brother) is also a gifted songwriter, musician (guitar) and doesn't do much with that any more, but I can still remember the days of going to see him and his band (Highgate) play at many of the local Philly places.
Harry (the dog) is a wonderful companion, just turned 2 years old and is full of fun -- as you can see by his photo, he's quite a ham and loves to laugh. He's a friendly dog -- loves everyone and thinks everyone should love him (and they often do). Harry's smart and fun and he's going to be joining me on my trip to Philly when I go to see PG and I can't wait until he gets to meet some of the familunies!
Okay, enough for now. It's time to take Harry outside -- Harry, the dog, not my brother!
thank you so much for telling your pg story< and about how it went with the lunatic club. very interesting!
for me, peter was the one to encourage me to make my own thing in music! this was in 2004. in 2009 i got to the internet by him as well. since then, my life has turned into something phantastic. i got out of the cave into the light- almost. it is still going on. many things which peter offered on his site helped me to devellop ideas in music and words. out of that all came the project i have worked out. finally i sent a wording about it to his office in may this year. so everything comes back to where it came from.
having done this, i have expected that i will come to some inner silence but now i know it won´t stop ever and in the course of the last months i am going different ways of impression and expression without expecting anything from outside.
watching the scene, i keep on getting inspiration and i keep on waiting for something i do not know really what it is in the end.
for me, there is soulfood between the lines of words and behind the sounds
coming from the few well known artist who are different to all others, because they want to move something in today´s times of icy coldness.
kind regards and thank you
Pat Parker21 July 2012 at 7:26pmPosts: 2683 (0 today)Status: offline
Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful story, wave project! I'm so very happy for you that you're getting to do what you want . . . and to think how PG's influence has helped you get there.
I know that so many of us (nearly all of us, actually) initially came here for one thing or another that was "PG-related" . . . whichever path led us here, it has always been a nice place to come and learn all we can about PG -- the man, the artist, the musician, etc., and along with it, we've been able to learn from him as well as learn about others and learn from them as well -- it's just chock full of resources -- like our very own personal "Google" -- "PGoogle" is what it can be for us.
So, continued success with your projects and I hope that you keep us all posted as to your projects.
Kind regards and looking forward to more stories . . . from the oldies to the newbies . . . we're just a bunch of lunatics here . . . the familunies!
good to get to know you guys!
i live near a lancaster as well pat, in ontario canada though!
pg has had a big influence in my creativity as well, wave project.
i was 17 when i first saw him concert, the so tour. it was after that experience that i knew i wanted to study visual arts at university. (wishing now i'd have studied some music though!) my work is ususally driven by listening to any pg album.
i wrote to pg as well, back during his up tour, inviting him to visit us. we live on the st. lawrence, an absolutely beautiful, inspiring river! i received a response as well from tina, thanking me for the compliments & for sending some copies of my work. (they were returned for 'safe keeping' though!) we had third from front row seats at the up concert which were great but i missed the general admission dance floor. i tried to dance in the aisle but was made to feel like a criminal & was told i had to return to my seat!
since then i've compiled my work in a blog but don't get much time to update it. we have three very active kids involved in hockey & lots of other activities! this afternoon it's off to golf lessons!