Confessions of an older Directioner
The title makes it sound like I’m admitting a painful, shameful secret, when I’ve been an out and proud Directioner since early 2012. Still using the title though, because it’s cool. Long-ass read, more under the cut.
I first learned about One Direction through Tumblr, the wonderful place I call home. I used to see a bunch of GIFs of the guys and remember thinking, “Who the fuck are these young schmucks?” The cover of their album Up All Night didn’t help either; they looked so ridiculously young. Then one day, TJ and I were in Astroplus and this fun, bouncy song was playing in the air. I wondered, “What is this song? It’s so catchy. So poppy. I love it.” It turned out to be One Direction’s “What Makes You Beautiful” and TJ and I both said, “What? By those 12-year-olds?? But it’s such a great song!” That very night, I went on Tumblr and looked up a bit more about the group–and was surprised to learn that their ages ranged from 18 to 20. Whaaaat.
It was in March 2012 when my obsession was solidified; the boys performed on Saturday Night Live and I couldn’t help noticing that
1. They sound good live.
2. They looked so relaxed and like they were having loads of fun performing.
3. No choreographed dance steps.
4. I feel like I could be the curly-haired guy’s much older sister. Or okay, given the age difference, aunt.
5. The Middle Eastern-looking one is an intense performer. 1
6. Holy hells, their pants are tight.
After that SNL episode, I was pretty much a goner, so I didn’t say no when my friend Macy asked me if I could write an article about the boys in a local One Direction magazine. I devoured everything 1D-related online, getting copies of their The X Factor episodes, video diaries, and their tour video diaries, interviews, appearances, getting everything I could get my hands on. I’ve spent hours looking into Larry Stylinson. 2 I follow their official Facebook page and that of One Direction Philippines. Heck, I follow all the boys on Twitter. I don’t think I’ve ever been this obsessed with a group since the Spice Girls when I was in high school. 3
These days, I am very much updated with what’s going on in their lives, and I even feel quite fond of them, as silly as it sounds. Their antics are amusing as hell, and it’s great to see how comfortable they are with each other. And oh all right, it helps that they’re incredibly cute, too, particularly my celebrity crush of the moment, Zayn Malik.
People say the older ladies tend to have a thing for Harry Styles, but eh. He isn’t my type, and like I said, I feel like he could be my little brother (or nephew). Now Zayn, on the other hand…I don’t remember how he became my favorite among the 1D guys. It could be because of his usually intense expression or maybe the silly faces he pulled in the “One Thing” video. Or maybe it’s the voice. Or maybe because he is intensely beautiful. Doesn’t really matter, though, I’m a Zayn girl, and I’m not alone; even non-Directioners agree that Zayn is superior. To the world. 4
I’m quite aware that he isn’t the most popular 1D member (we all know that title goes to Harry). It doesn’t make sense, though. He has the best voice in the group, he’s funny and reserved at the same time, he’s big on family, and he’s intensely beautiful. Some have suggested that it’s a racial issue. Some might think it’s his “bad boy” image. Some point to his “scandals” (cheating issues, trying to find girls for Harry, etc.).
That’s okay, though. That means less competition 5. I cling fervently to the hope that One Direction will make their way to the Philippines before I turn 35, that I will be able to meet Zayn and tell him that he’s a glorious, talented being, and that he won’t freak out at the sight of a giddy, happily grinning woman in her early 30s. For now, I will content myself with posting questions on his Ask.fm account; he already answered two of my questions, and the latest one has my actual name on it, so yay! Zayn must have at least glanced at my name.
Gearing up for disappointment
Everywhere, fans are clamoring for the boys to come to their countries. They’re huge, which is why it’s more than a little disappointing to find out that their current tour will take them to the same countries they went to for their Up All Night tour, only with Japan thrown in for November, and they’ve already been there in January. To me, it feels like the Spice Girls World Tour all over again, with their 2007 reunion tour thrown in. I’m concerned that they’ll be visiting and playing to the same countries again and again, ignoring the fact that they have fans all over the world who are totally eager to see them live. I probably shouldn’t demand that of them, but dammit, us non-US, -Europe, -Canada, -Australia, and -New Zealand fans are huge fans too, and being ignored just feels so…sad. 6
There’s some whispers that they’ll be going here at some point in the future. I hope those whispers are more than just wishful thinking. Furthermore, I hope that “some point in the future” means “really soon,” not when they’re in their mid-30s and have reunited 7.
- I was not fully prepared to commit to actually knowing their names, and I had no idea Zayn is half-Pakistani. That happened after watching their SNL performances. ↩
- I don’t have a solid opinion on this yet, but the theories and the various analyses are pretty compelling. ↩
- My love for the Spice Girls took devotion and effort because we didn’t have fast Internet or YouTube available back then. I mainly relied on our good ol’ VHS to record their music videos, the Spice Girls’ Survival Guide on MTV Asia, and their Istanbul show which aired on HBO, as well as a then-boyfriend who bought me their official videos when he went to the US. In addition to that, I got their official book, a couple of unofficial ones, and their lollipops. ↩
- According to me. ↩
- Yes, I am well aware that this kind of thinking is delusional. ↩
- The obsession some women my age have for fashion, bags, and makeup, I channel into One Direction, Tumblr, and games. ↩
- Yeah, I’m talking to you, Backstreet Boys. ↩