Fan Mail

I was writing letters.

I’d never written fan letters before in my life. Somehow, I’d escaped all of the silly teeny bopper love fest of soap opera stars or actors. It had never occurred to me to try and reach out and connect with those I admired for their talent for acting, or singing, or writing. My Tiger Beat magazine published pages of addresses where you could write your favorite stars and I always skipped over that section.

Until now.

In light of my recent disappointment while “breathing the same air” as Rick Springfield, I became increasingly discouraged that I would ever be able to connect personally with him. So Dawn and I came up with yet another plan.

Rather than write Rick Springfield at the address listed as a post office box for his fan club, we decided to get more creative. We knew where he was going to be for the next twelve or so weeks; in addition to the addresses for stars, they also published tour schedules. I knew what arena, what town and when Rick and his opening act Corey Hart would be playing at. All I would have to do is write the letters and time them properly to show up just before Rick’s performance in say, Tucson, and the letters would be left in the dressing room for him there.

I figured it was a brilliant plan. The fan mail box had to get thousands of letters, but each venue? Ours were likely the only ones.

We wrote everyone. Not just Rick, but Jack White, his drummer, Brett Tuggle, his keyboardist, Mike Seifrit, his bass player, and Tim Pierce, his guitarist. For fun, we threw in letters to Corey Hart, too. We included poems we were writing about them and their performances here last September. We also threw in self addressed stamped envelopes to make it easy for them to respond, since obviously the arenas would not exactly have rolls of stamps and envelopes available for letter writing.

All fall we wrote letters, following Rick and crew across the country. At the close of each letter I put the same postscript: “P.S. I love a good P.S.” I stole it from a book I’d read. I thought it gave a good continuity to the string of letters.

One day, a letter came back to my home address. I recognized my own handwriting on the front of the envelope and my own name. In the corner, where the return address should have been, was a tiny heart with an arrow through it and the words, “Don’t break your own heart baby.”

Inside, on a single sheet of paper was the response: “If you are over 18 I would love to give you a good P.S.” My heart leapt.

Below it was the signature: Corey Hart.

If only I’d ever learned to take his advice.

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