My name is Wendy and I'm a Daveaholic
Common sense says you don’t meet people you’ve known only through the Internet. But in total defiance of that dictum, Wendy Loo will rendezvous with strangers all over the country for the next eight weeks. The only connection these strangers have is that they’re all Dave Matthews Band fans who frequent nancies.org, the VH-1 award-winning fan website created by Charlottesville’s own Waldo Jaquith.
In the grand tradition of Grateful Dead and Phish fans, Loo, 33, will devote this year to traveling around the country to attend every DMB concert on the band’s tour schedule. She quit her job and hit the road from California for DMB’s first show in Washington on April 4. First stop: Charlottesville.
Here, she stayed with her first stranger, Diane Lahue. But Loo insists Lahue is not a stranger. She already knew Lahue as Tinigirl, just as Lahue knew Loo by her nancies screen name, Daveaholic.
Loo met Jaquith in the flesh when she invited him and 20 other nancies to stay at her dad’s house in Malibu last fall for the VH1 music awards. Her guideline for meeting other nancies? “If Waldo says it’s okay, this person is okay.”
What makes a grown woman— whom Waldo insists is quite sane— quit her prestigious job as an attorney to follow a touring rock band?
“After September 11,” she answers, “I realized life was too short to do something that didn’t make me happy.”
What did make her happy was listening to DMB and chatting with the folks at nancies.org. And with no mortgage, love interest, or kids, “I thought it would be the perfect time for an adventure.” She adds, “I’m as much a fan of the nancies as of the band.”
During April and May, Loo will see 33 shows. Then between July and September, another 34 shows are scheduled. At around $50 a pop (she’s getting all tickets at face value), that’s about $3,300 Loo will spend on tickets. Loo thinks that’s pretty reasonable. “It’s my entertainment for the next six months,” she justifies. And by staying with all those nancies, Loo expects her hotel costs to be low.
The worst that could happen— besides running out of money? “I’m worried that by concert number four I’ll be sick of them,” she answers. But she doesn’t think that’s likely.
This isn’t an Almost Famous type of adventure— Loo’s not that kind of girl. Although she has copped a hug from Matthews, she quotes Penny Lane from the movie: “It’s not about sleeping with the band; it’s the music.”
While in Charlottesville, the mecca for DMB fans, Loo saw the pink warehouse and met other fans at Miller’s. And she plans to document her journey on her own website, HYPERLINK "http://www.travelingnancy.org" www.travelingnancy.org— if she’s not too tired after all those concerts and if she doesn’t run into the psycho nancies.