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Hacked in the Act of Fandom

A tale of real fans and red flags



 

For all the things I pooh-pooh about social media, I do love how it connects us to people we admire or find inspiring. Ordinarily, I don’t give two flips about celebrities (exceptions made for Rob Lowe, Jude Law and Bradley Cooper, of course), but people like to interact with them via social media. My husband is no exception. He recently dashed into the room to read an exciting Instagram notification: John Prine started following you!  

The news got better – his lifelong idol, singer-songwriter John Prine, was not only following him on Instagram, but had messaged him, too. John Prine wanted to be Insta buddies!

They began exchanging messages innocuously enough:

John Prine: Hello. How are you today?

Mr. Roth: Doing great! How are you? I’ve been a huge fan of yours for decades! Hope to make it to a show this year.

JP: I hope you come.

“John Prine wants us to try to make it to one of his shows!” Mr. Roth announced with a giddiness that reminded me of the thrill that might have washed over 10-year-old me if Tiger Beat had included a pull-out poster of Tony “Heartbeat, It’s a Lovebeat” DeFranco (who is still scorching hot, btw). “He’s just such a good human being,” Mr. Roth said. “I’m not surprised that he would just be friendly like that.”

Before long, JP amped up the friendly with messages that became more frequent, almost daily. (Red flag #1.) Mr. Roth could not have been happier. For John, however, Instagram was a hassle. To continue the deeper conversations he was apparently missing during his hectic touring schedule, he suggested that the discussion move to Google Hangouts. (Red flag #2.)

JP: How is your day going?

MR: It has been a great day.

JP: Do you have any pictures of you I can see? (Red flags #3-8.)

The questions became more specific.

JP: Where are you really from? Where are your both parents? Do you have brother or sister? (Attention, red flags #9-15 – you’re up.)

“What the … is he writing a song about your family?” I asked in disbelief.

Eventually, with a total disregard for punctuation or syntax, John Prine confided:

JP: I’m looking for someone I can definitely trust cause I have got some few things I need to do and take care of without my management knowing about it so I need one of my loyal fan [sic] to handle this for me (I’ve now wrapped myself in a red flag.)

MR: You bet.

JP: If you handle this for me, you will never regret it.

(Historical note: since the dawn of mankind, nothing good has ever followed the words, “You will never regret it.”)

JP: I got in touched [sic] by the security company where I have my brief case [sic] kept for a while which contains some huge amounts of money and some valuable documents that belongs  [sic] to me I am needing you to be able to take care of the delivery to your home, I want you to please be secretive concerning this.

Days pass with Mr. Roth now snubbing “John Prine,” who, instead of touring, has taken to blowing up Google Hangouts.

JP: Hi.

JP: Hello.

JP: What are you doing right now.

JP: Did you get my message about the Brief [sic] case?

JP: Are you still busy?

JP: Will you be able to help me?

JP: Please can i still hope on helping me out as i don’t have much time to waste

JP: Just hold on to the bag for a period of time

Mr. Roth resurfaces long enough to assure his idol that Operation Hold This Bag is on. John Prine, relieved, hastily asks for a meeting point (insert all the red flags) to deliver the bag. Mr. Roth complies, giving him an address and a final message:

MR: See you Thursday at 2!

What the Davidson County (Tennessee) sheriff did with the briefcase is anyone’s guess.

 

 

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November 2019

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Cost: Free!

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Telephone: 580.252.6692
Contact Name: Toni Hopper
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Cost: Free!

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More information

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More information

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Cost: $175 for the full term

Where:
The Paramount Room
701 W. Sheridan Ave
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Sponsor: The Space OKC
Telephone: 405-887-3327
Contact Name: AL Caveny
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More information

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Cost: Varies

Where:
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201 N Walker Ave
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Telephone: 405-594-8300
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More information

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Cost: $27-$87

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall
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View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Telephone: 405-594-8300
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More information

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Cost: 40.00

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall
201 N Walker Ave
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View map »


Sponsor: Oklahoma City Rep
Telephone: 405-594-8300
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free!

Where:
Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art
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Sponsor: Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art
Website »

More information

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Cost: $4-$6

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Chisholm Trail Heritage Center
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View map »


Sponsor: Chisholm Trail Heritage Center
Telephone: 580.252.6692
Contact Name: Toni Hopper
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

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Cost: 0

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View map »


Sponsor: VillagesOKC
Telephone: 405-990-6637
Contact Name: VillagesOKC
Website »

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Cost: Free

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Cost: $59.95

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Sponsor: The Dinner Detective
Telephone: 866.496.0535
Website »

More information

Professional instruction in the art of improvisation. Though some experience with improvisation is beneficial, all skill levels are welcome, no prerequisite classes.  Though sketch comedy...

Cost: $175 for the full term

Where:
The Paramount Room
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View map »


Sponsor: The Space OKC
Telephone: 405-887-3327
Contact Name: AL Caveny
Website »

More information

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Cost: $75.00

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More information

Nominated for 8 Tony Awards A DOLL'S HOUSE, PART 2 flashes forward 15 years form Henrik Ibsen's 1879 portrait of marriage as a women's prison, and my, how things have - and...

Cost: 40.00

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall
201 N Walker Ave
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View map »


Sponsor: Oklahoma City Rep
Telephone: 405-594-8300
Website »

More information

A legendary roster of Grammy® Award winners. A visionary director and a Tony Award®-winning design team. One of the world’s most beloved characters. Turn them loose on stage and what...

Cost: $27-$87

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall
201 N Walker Ave
OKC, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Telephone: 405-594-8300
Website »

More information

A legendary roster of Grammy® Award winners. A visionary director and a Tony Award®-winning design team. One of the world’s most beloved characters. Turn them loose on stage and what...

Cost: Varies

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall
201 N Walker Ave
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Telephone: 405-594-8300
Website »

More information

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