”I only love two of my children.” ”I had gay sex at church camp. Three times.” ”I pee in the sink.” Who’s responsible for putting these anonymous personal confessions on TRL, the nexus of disposable culture and tweenage frenzy? Thank, in ascending order, the All-American Rejects, video director Marcos Siega, and a man named Frank Warren. The Rejects, preparing to shoot the video for their new single ”Dirty Little Secret,” called upon Siega (helmer of high-profile clips for blink-182, Kelly Osbourne, and Papa Roach), who in turn suggested the band check out the website http://www.postsecret.com.
Frank Warren, its proprietor, is a fortysomething father, businessman, and ”accidental artist” from suburban Maryland who started the site as an art exhibit in November 2004. The premise is simple: Write your secret (any secret) anonymously on a postcard, send it to Warren’s mailbox, and he will post it online.
”I really like the idea that we can take these secrets that isolate us, and maybe through sharing them, take the first step in turning them into something that can help us heal, or help others heal,” says Warren, who provided Siega and the band with access to the postcards in exchange for a donation to a suicide-prevention hotline. Today, he gets as many as 100 postcards a week and up to 70,000 hits a day on the site. As for the Rejects, don’t ask them to unveil the skeletons in their closets. ”We have no secrets,” singer Tyson Ritter says, laughing. ”We are perfect in every way.”