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Getting Real : Speak your peace

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from Nancy
Tuesday, March 29, 2005 - 11:14

Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Okay, this is me trying to remain calm and write something understanding, as that is not how I feel at all when someone just called me to tell me about this post.

First of all, the memorial wasn't about you! It was about Ricky, and it was also about other peers, friends and family we have lost. Was that completely lost to you?! Were you so focused on yourself that you didn't remember the real reason you were there?

Second, the majority of people most certainly did not come after the service. The majority of those that came were at the service. People came later, but they were NOT the majority.

Third, did you ever stop to think while you were focusing on yourself at the reception about the people there who knew and loved Ricky? Did you ever think about their pain or what they were going through? If you had, then maybe you would have approached them. Maybe you would have stopped thinking about yourself for one minute and considered that you were at a memorial and there were people there who really miss Ricky. Did you speak to his widow? Did you speak to any of his friends and family? Elixcia is VERY approachable. She is gentle and sweet and friendly just like Ricky. She will talk to you if you'll listen. Did you even make the rounds and speak to Ricky's family and give your condolences? That is what normal people do at a memorial. Did you thank the people who worked so hard to organize the event?

I didn't know some people there. Yet, I took a friend and went up to people and introduced myself. I was never once treated with anything but kindness in return. I spoke to people who were surrounded by their friends who were there to support them and I didn't feel awkward at all. No one made me feel awkward. But, it took a little effort to go and talk to people I didn't know. If I'd sat in the corner, I'd probably not met anyone either.

Another thing, there were a lot of people there really affected by Ricky's death and still struggling to cope and make a life for themselves. Did you speak to any of them? I did. I felt a little nervous going up to some complete strangers, but I knew it was important to show them support. I wanted them to know that they were thought of and cared for by people they didn't know.

Fourth, there were no drugs at the memorial or the reception. There certainly was no ex. That is just ridiculous gossip. If one or two of the 300 people there left and did something in their room, then that is there choice. This is America, not a cult. We cannot control the behavior of others. But, I can assure you there were no drugs at the event. There was security and San Diego PD there. There were no drugs present. If you saw drugs, then it wasn't at the memorial, and I question who you're hanging out with. That sounds like your own problem, but don't make blatantly false accusations about people you don't know. Those who planned this event and hired security assured that there were no drugs at the memorial.
Fifth, ďWhen people behave as if they are in High School - ever aware of who they are seen with and who they talk to, for fear of a ruined reputation, I think of Family Dance Nights, and am glad I am out of that type of environment.Ē It sounds like youíre the one with the problem. Youíre the one focused to such an extent on fitting in and how you looked and felt that you felt the need to write this little missive all the while completely ignoring the purpose of the memorial. You prattle on and on about wanting to fit in and how you didnít in the Family and didnít at the memorial. Well, you were totally focused on yourself. That kind of trait tends to turn people off. It sounds like youíve taken the girl out of the cult, but not the cult out of the girl. This is real life, not your mamaís cult. People arenít nice to you just because you exist. You have to make an effort to befriend people. You have to stop thinking about yourself and how you were always a misfit for at least enough time to have a conversation with someone. Had you done that, you would have been surprised to discover that people, even complete strangers, would have spoken to you.

I donít mean to be hateful or unkind, but this thoughtless post really angers me. It projects all your obviously personal problems and low self-esteem onto a lot of really incredible, generous and kind people. It attempts to make something as important as Rickyís memorial about you. It wasnít about you honey. It certainly wasnít as you described. What you described is your own perspective obviously clouded by a lot of personal issues. It also disrespects and maligns a lot of good people.

I met probably 100 new people this past weekend and reunited with maybe 50 I knew as a child. Not one of those people were anything but absolutely friendly and easy to talk to. It was an incredible experience for me. I think the difference between our experiences was how we approached it. Did you thank any of the people involved in planning the event you just maligned? Did you think about the effects of your complaints on Rickyís family and friends? Did you even contribute anything to the funding of the memorial? Or did you just come with a chip on your shoulder and focused on yourself only to leave with the same bad attitude and write some inane post criticizing the people who worked so hard and are still living with the pain of Rickyís absence everyday.

Bottom line: This is not a cult. This is the real world. You have to make your own friends, rather than just complain to the leadership everyone is being mean to you. If you donít have any friends and people donít talk to you, then maybe you need to figure out why that is. I was a dork when we were kids in the cult, too. We were all dorks back then. We were in a frigginí cult for Christís sake! Yet, now weíre adults. We answer for ourselves and we have to make our own life.

Had you spoken to me at the memorial and told me you felt awkward, you better believe I would have talked with you and introduced you to people I know and done everything in my power to have made you feel comfortable. I donít know anyone there who would have done differently. Yet, no one is a mind reader. If you were off by yourself feeling left out, then you probably looked unapproachable.

Again, Iím not trying to be mean. Iím actually trying very hard to not be mad, but your whole post is downright skewed and unkind and attempts to paint a beautiful event as something cultish. Itís a slap in the face to Rickyís family and friends and all those who worked so hard to make it happen. Next time, plan your own event and invite your own friends.
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from GoldenMic
Tuesday, March 29, 2005 - 10:16


Clearly, I am an old fart, because I never even noticed the presense of drugs at the resception! I do, however, recognize that such a large gathering of this type was bound to trigger many memories and reactions, and I am glad you brought the topic up even though your words, too, triggered many of us. As "T" said at the memorial, there's no value in us pretending that we are not scarred by our cult past, so I am glad that you presented your reaction.

At the same time, I have been anxiously waiting for somebody to start a discussion about Ricky's day, and I hope that this is just the first attempt, not the last, because that was a truly memorable and inspiring event. Given the large numbers, and the potential for abreactions to have ruined the event, I was truly awed to see the vast majority of participants demonstrate warmth and dignity, honoring one of their own. It was awesome to see so much love, humor, and graciousness by almost every attendee. Clearly, the tone was initially established by the organizers, putting together a beautiful and flowing activity. I think this was a particluarly difficult task, since every attempt at providing direction and orderliness was bound to, again, trigger reactions from those of us still rejecting past memories of being told how to function in crowds. Despite that, there seemed to be a sincere commitment to keeping the event focussed on the love and honoring of Ricky and his loved-one's.

I talked with a firend there who was similarly triggered by the dancing and all of its attendant associations, but she may have had the best solution by just staying away from those situations that were simply too memory-laden for her to enjoy. With all of the lively and loving conversations going on, it wasn't too hard, and many people there were clearly working diligently to watch out for their peers. Heck, I am an outsider from another cult, and it was humbling and gratifying to be specifically and repeatedly made welcome and be invited in to conversations.

Joe, you cut a mean rug, and its true that you were gracious and freindly throughout. If these events start becoming too common, and people start finding out who you are in person, you will be in serious danger of losing your reputation as a curmudgeon! Sara, it may be difficult for many of us to actually come out and praise people (too many cult-related bad memories, I guess) but your tireless reaching out, humor & grace, and problem-solving was pivotal in making this event so warm and relaxed. I hope that your closest friends are able to convey to you just how large and meaningful your presense was, and how appreciated.
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from Nick
Tuesday, March 29, 2005 - 09:44


This whole thing sounds like sour grapes to me.

Yeah, there were a lot of great looking, "Cool" Ryan Secrest (SP) people around that night. I thought it was great! If you were not one of those people then get a makeover or learn to accept yourself the way you are. I personally thought there was a huge range of different people there that night but didn't at all think that any one group of people were none accepting of the other. If you don't like being a wall flower then force yourself to be more outgoing.

As for the drugs that were going around... Well that is pretty much what your gonna see in 90% of the clubs out there and that does not make the people that chose to use them losers. Infact coke and X are the drug of chose for every kind of professional from Lawyers to Doctors and some very prominent members of society. I didn't get the feel of a "family dance night", I got the feel of a typical company XMas party or a private club.

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from Fwenzip
Tuesday, March 29, 2005 - 01:38



Good luck
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from Oddman
Tuesday, March 29, 2005 - 01:01


Well, this has nothing to do with Ricky's memorial. This is just my honest thoughts on reading your post.

I understand the left out part. I wasn't a part of the "in" crowd in TF either. Largely because my status during teens was FM, and because like you, I was too broody and melancholic.

If we all left TF, then we are not bound to accept everybody. We have the freedom to group up with people we like, ostracize those we dislike. I don't really get along with the x popping crowd, so I just don't hang around. I get the impression your success with making friends outside TF relies on you hiding or denying who you are and have been.

People that have a lot of friends are not always "green day" wannabes. They have what we call charisma. Call it extra pheromones, or some beauty inside them, but they will always have friends, whether they dress and act like Billy Joe, Marylin Manson, or like me, in a three piece British suit. Don't be jealous about that... besides, growing up in a place like TF, you form a sort of unique comradeliness. Like blood brothers. Try walking up to a group of Marines that lived and died together. See if they let you in their circle any easier.

Ok, I'm talking out of my ass now... :D
(reply to this comment)

from PisauDarah
Monday, March 28, 2005 - 21:37

Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
The other night after the memorial WAS exactly like a teen dance night. It was kind of sad that most of the people our age didn't even come for the memorial. they came after for the reception, food & party. It seems most people our age haven't matured one bit. It seems the only reason a good portion of people came the reception was to "hook up". Not to mention the drugs ("X") that was going around at the reception & the "gange" at the after party. Congradulations to those who were doing the drugs! You became just like our hippy good-for-nothing parents! You don't even have the self-respect to not put that crap in your body. For those of you who wrote negatively against the posted aught to be ashamed of yourselves. Congradulations! In your lives, the "Family" won. I do blame myself for just talking instead of taking action when the drugs were brought out the other night. It's real sad what some people have become. YOU chose your own path! Your past does not dictate where your future should lead!
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From Joe H
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 12:18

Puritanism -- the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy. H.L. Mencken (reply to this comment
From dalai pot lama
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 12:06


I only use narcotics when I am with close friends I can trust. I would assume some people needed it to get through what I assume was a very touching memorial, and I suppose it helped some people feel together and close to Ricky.(reply to this comment

From Odyssey
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 12:03


Maybe we can have these contentious issues discussed separately from the memorial? You can start a thread debating narcotics, and one debating ex-fam get togethers vs. dance nights, without tainting peoples image of Ricky's memorial..

About narcotics... I think a large portion of people have tried it. When I first tried, it was a definite rebellion against authority, and I had narcotics occasionally from then, mostly at raves & parties. I quit about a year ago, after I noticed that my concentration was very bad when I was high, and it put me in a vulnerable situation. Still, I did have a puff of DP about 6 months ago with friends, when the situation warranted, and it was legal. I understand in some places it is illegal, and not something that should be encouraged or condoned, but I didn't appreciate the lecturing attitude seen above. Just because I have tried narcotics, and will be glad to enjoy the occassional weed or X, doesn't imply that TF won.

I get the impression that you don't understand how deeply some have been affected. For instance, I can't say I understand the hurt of someone that has been a victim of sexual abuse.

Although I am happily getting on with my life, and consider myself quite matured for my age, there are some issues such as parental violence, fatherless children, and exorcism, that open old wounds, and I have difficulty coping with them. I wouldn't expect even someone who has been sexually abused, to understand my hurt regarding these things.(reply to this comment

From roughneck
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 09:15

I wasn't at the memorial, but I did want to make one small comment on yours, namely: the fact that some ex-SGAs choose to use &/or abuse substances (yeah, duh, this includes alcohol, tobacco and other such legal drugs) doesn't necessarily mean that they've "became[sic] just like our hippy good-for-nothing parents". When my fellow SGAs start 'searching for the truth' and signing up with cults to 'do the Lord's work', THEN, and ONLY THEN can you fairly say that they've become like their good-for-nothing parents. After all, it's not as if many other drug users and other hippie freaks haven't gone on to good and successful things in the last 30 years. Not all drug-taking freaks in the sixties joined cults and wasted 30 years of their lives you know. :)

The other small thing I wanted to comment on was where you said "I do blame myself for just talking instead of taking action when the drugs were brought out the other night". You aren't your brother's keeper - at least not any more. I mean, you can't take responsibility for anyone's actions but your own, so you really shouldn't be blaming yourself at all. - Besides, nobody likes a narc anyway. :) IMO, you did the right thing by not "taking action" on other people's willingly-entered-into self-abuse. Even if you had 'taken action', what would your best case scenario have been? The SDPD SWAT team showing up and throwing a bunch of partiers in a pound-me-in-the-ass jail? C'mon... :)

Personally I could give a shit what substances you're on, so long as you keep your act half-assed together. When it gets to the point (and believe me, I've been there myself) that you're acting up and causing a scene, (as far as I'm concerned this goes for anything you're ingesting, imbibing or injecting) it's time to quit and/or go home. For alcohol, I've found it's the point where you start saying 'I love you maaaaan' to people you barely know. :D - But that's just my own philosophy and Your Mileage May Vary as always. :)(reply to this comment
From Fish
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 08:43

What a gay comment..(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Monday, March 28, 2005, 23:20

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Excuse me, but those that just wrote those last few comments were all people I know and are friends with who were there from the beginning and who worked their butts off along with me to help make this the wonderful and beautiful event that I thought it was.

I will be the first to say I was extremely upset by this stupid post. I mean, wtf??? This Memorial was about Ricky! Not at all about feeling ďcoolĒ or ďtrying to fit inĒ some ex-member crowd! I mean if that was all you took with you from it then mabye you should be ashamed! Iím sorry but nobody around you should have been the determining factor of how you felt.

It shouldnít have mattered what anyone thought of you if you were there for the right reasons, which should have been to say goodbye to a friend and loved one. Were you not there for the Memorial? The part where people got up and shared their hearts and souls with you? Where sisters and family and friends talked of their love and support for each other?

I donít believe any of those who just made the last few comments were participants of the so-called foolishnesses you are saying went on. I certainly didnít see any of that. IF there was that going on then those individuals are accountable. There will always be a few that will spoil it for the rest and majority of people who were there for the right reasons. You certainly didnít seem to have that big of a problem as you were one of those who stayed up by the bonfire till the wee hours of the morning laughing and talking the night away. IF you were having such a bad time and such a problem what were you doing there all night and why didnít you mention any of this to me that night?

As for the reception and people kicking back afterwards talking with friends eating and drinking; that is what Ricky wanted. He actually didnít want a "Memorial", when talking of the death of my brother one day he said ďif I ever died and thereís a memorial for me I would prefer to have a party, a party to celebrate, a party where people come together and dance and drink and have a good time and do whatever the hell they want.Ē I would have liked to do just that. However, although my brother wanted the same thing my Dad told me something that really stuck out to me. I argued with him at the time about it and didnít listen I did however think about what he said when planning this one.

He said, ď Sara, Jeremy isnít here, he isnít here to see the pain we are all in from what he did and how he left us. He isnít here to pick up the broken pieces of those that are left behind suffering his loss. Sometimes a memorial isnít for the one who left us; itís for those who they left behind. We have memorials for ourselves, to heal, to sort things out, to say the things we wanted to say but never did when we had the chance, to deal with our own guilt and pain. It was for these reasons I wanted to have the memorial

This is so sad that the only thing you or the person who posted this article remembers is that a few people were out of it. You have no idea what went behind having to organize this event. With so many people with so many passionate personalities and at different stages of their lives and coming from so many different places I was amazed at how smoothly everything went. Everyone seemed to put their own personal issues aside to come together to share their love and respect. I was overwhelmed at seeing so many wonderful people together in one place having overcome great losses and obstacles in life. I counted myself lucky and blessed to have known such friends that came.

I do feel bad if anyone felt secluded or left out I made it my sole purpose of the evening to meet everyone that came and thank them for coming and wanted to make them feel welcome and introduce them to others if they didnít know many people there. Iím sorry if missed you. I certainly hope this opinion of the Memorial is not what the majority of you felt. All I wanted was to show Elixcia was how many people loved Ricky and to show her how many peopleís lives he has touched and made a difference in, including my own. That is what I saw, that is what I took away with me and maybe thatís why I didnít see it the way you did.(reply to this comment
From Nancy
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 11:47

Sara, this post is so inane and below you, it isn't worth your time to read it much less respond. We all know how beautiful the memorial was. I say we vote the entire article into the tailerpark. God forbid Elixcia read it and be hurt by it.(reply to this comment
From Auty
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 08:16

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I absolutely agree! Everyone deals with their issues in thier own way, whether it is crying, laughing, drinking, putting some chemical in their body, eating or getting freaky on a dance floor. Each individual is unique in how they handle types of stressful situations, many of us have not been around large numbers of our peers since TF, so copping with this situation might of been difficult, if nearly impossible for some. If someone felt left out, this is no one's fault except their own. You choose to be a wall flower, no one is forcing you to spend your evening unhappy, you should of simply grabbed your personal belongings, said your goodbyes and left.

Sara, I think you did an excellent job and I know Ricky would of been proud. It was a beautiful evening.(reply to this comment

From PisauDarah
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 06:19

What I was trying to get accross was that I thought it was sad that so many people went there just to party & get laid. I thought the main reason for the function was to pay respects to Ricky. And I figured everyone knew about the drugs...they were done in the open. But you're right...talking around the fire was good...though most people had already left by then. (reply to this comment
From Sonderval
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 07:35

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

"it was sad that so many people went there just to party & get laid"

The 'just' in there is your own inference, people deal with things in different ways and as sarafina said above, Ricky himself wanted people to get together and have fun when he died. Were you listening in on every conversation? Do you know the thoughts and motivations for the people you saw dancing? The answer to both questions is no, you just coloured what you saw through your own preconceptions. You assumed that because you saw people appearing to enjoy themselves rather than sobbing in a corner they weren't there because they cared about Ricky, that I think is why people here have taken offence to your post.

Don't presume to know why people were there, if all they were there for is dancing and sex then I'm pretty sure there're easier ways for anyone to get either. I'm glad that some people will go away from the memorial with some happy memories, I didn't know Ricky personally but from things he's said I think he would be too.

As you can't know what's going on inside other people's heads your post was about you and your insecurities, get over it, the memorial wasn't about that.(reply to this comment

From Sonderval
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 07:36

Sorry, this reply was to both people complaining about people at the memorial, I have a cold and thought they were the same person so I've mixed my points a little bit, the gist still applies though.(reply to this comment
From NMS
Monday, March 28, 2005, 21:55


I did come for the memorial, unlike many others who only showed at the reception.

I was merely commenting on what I observed during the reception. I have no problem not "loving myself". I did not come all the way down to San Diego to make a splash or my debut on the dance floor. I live close enough to drive. I came to honor Ricky and to see some of my friends. Yes, I have never been in high school, like the all-knowing, ever helpful Joe H. Perhaps I should have said "it was like all the High School movies I have watched." I count myself so lucky that Joe, with his busy schedule and all, read my post and showed me the error of my ways.

It was more funny than anything to see all the Ryan Seacrest and "Green Day" wannabe's posturing and trying to look cool. That's why it reminded me of teen dance night. Joe, if you were one of those who used to rock to the TIV, I apologize if I struck a nerve (you got awful hostile). I'll check out the site posthaste. I'll also try to work on not being a cyber-slut.(reply to this comment

from Lance
Monday, March 28, 2005 - 18:56

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I think youíre trying to find acceptance in all the wrong places. Until you learn to both love that geek that you were and whatever person you are now, nothing that you do to make yourself better will ever be good enough.

(reply to this comment)
from Mack
Monday, March 28, 2005 - 18:47

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Well cyber slut its so sad you came all the way to San Diego to be cool on the dance floor. Since you didnít come there to remember Ricky and you werenít trying to get with me then why the hell did you come. And to say we were acting like were in high schoolÖwe never went to high school. But all jokes aside it was disappointing there wasnít more sex around the bon fire.
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from Joe H
Monday, March 28, 2005 - 18:12

Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Well, how nice to know that instead of remembering Ricky, you came all the way to San Diego to wallow in your own self-loathing and bitterness. Had you actually attended high school, you would never compare the awesome party we had the other night to prom night at your average rundown American temple of conformity, and you would never confuse my friends with the repressive and insecure fucktards I went to high school with. Your lack of self-confidence and possible need of a makeover is no fault of anyone else's, especially not the extremely outgoing and friendly people I caught up with last night or met for the first time. Even people who have expressed their hatred and disgust for me online were polite and charming.

I was a dork in the Family too, but I had lots of friends, even among the cool kids. The fact that people may not have liked you probably had much less to do with your looks than with your self-hatred and insecurity. But hell, if you think regular teen awkwardness is something to be bitter about, you're on the wrong fucking Web site! I think everyone here has much bigger issues to deal with. Maybe you could go over to or something. What is even your point in posting this article, broadcasting to the world your insecurity? Yeah, that'll get you a date!
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from Patrick Swayze
Monday, March 28, 2005 - 16:09

Hey man, don't knock Family Dance Nights. If it weren't for those nights and the cult baby dancers they produced the moves I bravely pioneered in Dirty Dancing would have died out long ago. Instead they are kept alive wherever 2 or more exers are gathered together with Jay-Z in the midst of them. PTL, TYJ!
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From Underworld
Tuesday, March 29, 2005, 10:28

Hahahahah, omfg thats the funniest thing I've ever heard, "No one puts baby in a corner"...(reply to this comment

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