Ruled by Rod
ANDREA SEABROOK, host:
Addiction specialists believe that there is a whole spectrum of activities that can be addictive. Stuff like gambling, eating and even playing video games. Commentator Jake Halpern would like to add another addiction to the list. The title of his book, "Fame Junkies," pretty much says it all.
Mr. JAKE HALPERN (Author): How many times have you heard someone say, oh, I love them so much I am like totally addicted to them. You know what I'm talking about. Everyone has a friend who's a huge Pink Floyd fan or a cousin who follows Phish around or an aunt who goes absolutely gaga over Elvis.
And inevitably these fans describe themselves as being totally addicted to their idols. Marcy Braunstein of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is a self-proclaimed Rod Stewart addict.
Ms. MARCY BRAUNSTEIN: When I'm talking with other fans, we will say, you know, we're having Rod withdrawal or we need a Rod fix. It's excitement, it's a rush, it makes you feel good.
Mr. HALPERN: As we got to chatting, Marcy told me that she had spent upwards of $25,000 on her Rod collection - every single Rod album ever recorded, a framed dress shirt that Rod had once worn, and a glass that Rod had once sipped from when on the set of Oprah Winfrey.
Ms. BRAUNSTEIN: You know, like when he's on TV, I know I'm taping it but I'm looking at it, like, his every move, his every whatever he's saying, or whatever. I just want to take it in because I want to be able to remember this.
Mr. HALPERN: In many ways Marcy fits the classic profile of the addict. She gets her fixes and then she goes through her withdrawals. She spends tens of thousands of dollars to buy memorabilia and to attend Rod concerts all over the world. Sometimes, Marcy added, she wished that she didn't feel that need for Rod quite so acutely, but ultimately she simply can't do without the emotional highs that Rod gives her.
Ms. BRAUNSTEIN: Everybody has their baby. It could be a cigarette, a beer, a sporting event, it could be your golf game, it could be skiing. You know, mine is Rod Stewart.
Mr. HALPERN: As mind-bogglingly bizarre as Marcy's story was, I couldn't help but identify with her in a way. I myself own all of Van Morrison's albums and sometimes I feel a craving to play his songs. I've even considered going to Ireland to hear him perform on his own turf. So yeah, at times I need my Van fix. And while it's easy to shake my head in disbelief that Marcy Braunstein is a rock star-aholic, I have to admit I've had my fair share of drinks at the bar.
SEABROOK: Jake Halpern is the author of "Fame Junkies." Next week he introduces us to some celebrity personal assistants.
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