(Photo from Twitter.com/LadyGaga) This post is about an amazingly dedicated Lady Gaga fan who serves as an example of how fans within a community truly connect with one another and what their fandom gives back to them.
I first became aware of Ryan in the summer of 2010 when I came across his YouTube videos about meeting Gaga. I got in touch with him and he gladly agreed to do an interview with me about his fandom and being a Little Monster (you can listen to and download the special HERE). Within our talk, he discussed how in many ways Gaga has changed the negatives in his life, and especially one point in his life where he thought he would never walk again due to a mystery illness:
In all honesty, I had given up on meself…whatever the doctors and hospitals were saying, I just wasn’t listening, to be honest because I had been told that many things. I was miserable in hospital…nothing could cheer me up, but this one day I checked me Twitter messages and I’d seen two get well messages from Gaga. I screamed and I cried and the nurses come running in with medication, like ‘What’s wrong with your arm!?’ and I’m like no, Lady Gaga’s just messaged me!
Ryan is a very well known fan, or “big name fan” sociologically speaking, in the Little Monster community. As the head runner of GagaNews.com, he boasts over 738,000 views on YouTube, over 17,000 followers on Twitter and nearly 4,000 friends on Facebook, as well as being dubbed by Gaga herself as a super fan who even got to listen to her album Born This Way months before it was released. Yet with all this attention on him, he’s never acted above any other fan. Ryan constantly spreads the message through his wide audience the true principles of being a Little Monster, which are among many values to be true to yourself, to treat others with equality and to always be creative.
You can also check out a video I edited in 2010 with just some of Ryan’s amazing experiences with Gaga and other fans HERE and the second radio special I did with him HERE. (Photo credit Amanda Rosenblatt)