Bob Dylan just turned 73! And I have to count myself a big fan (along with billions of others) but hope sometimes I haven’t turned the corner into utter fanaticism. It’s with such ambivalence that I approached a fascinating new book called The Dylanologists: Adventures in the Land of Bob by David Kinney. It’s by turns poignant, hilarious, and just plain weird, as it takes us on a rapid-paced itinerary through the (often disconcerting) peripheral universe of good old Saint Bob: those who move to Dylan’s tiny Midwestern hometown in pursuit of buying his boyhood home, or at least snatching his highchair; bootleg tape collectors who often keep their coveted finds secret from one another; folks who open up Bob-themed restaurants, buy and trade obscure memorabilia, start painstakingly detailed fanzines and websites; become obsessed over one album, epoch or particular song; parse the Bible for revelatory proto-Bob poeticism; or travel extensively to follow the musician on his “never-ending-tour.” But one of the most interesting anecdotes is a tour guide of John Lennon’s childhood home recounting taking Dylan around the assorted living areas, when he popped up on the day he was scheduled to play in Liverpool. Perhaps its somewhat consoling that even a so-called “poet of his generation” is ultimately just a fan too. Now to track down more unreleased Dylan….