The term "fangirl" should be innocuous -- a simple description of a girl who is a big fan of something or someone. A person of the female persuasion who loves something beyond basic appreciation, who wears her love and adoration on her sleeve. But over the years it's been awarded with a pesky stigma, a dark cloud that elicits shudders of distaste.
This came about long before Twilight -- back to the earlier days of media when Beatlemania was going strong, when Michael Jackson moonwalked himself into the hearts of crying, shrieking young'ens everywhere. (And let us remember that these included boys as well.) I'll never forget watching a television special on fangirls in my own youth, and wondered why they were shaking, crying, and screaming as if tortured by the sight of McCartney or Lennon hitting the stage in the '60s, or the mere glimpse of Jackson's sparkling glove in the '80s. Some overwhelmed tears might be expected, but not a full-scale mental and emotional meltdown. Not hormones on fire.
Today, it's all about vampires and a certain high school girl ready to give up everything for a young man that sparkles. Tomorrow it will probably be something else. But before another tide hits, we've got to look at this thing called "fangirl."