Well, here we are. The Chief Inquisitor, as I called her in this post, left me a comment. And posted a link to my blog on her blog. Just describing this chain of fuckery makes me want to put my head right through my keyboard. But wait, in case you thought we were beyond passing notes in gym class: the link was forwarded to her by a “former high school friend” of mine. Which is…weird. I’m not friends with that many people from high school. I’ll admit that I’m curious, although I’m not particularly angry about it. Though whoever you are? You can say it to my face. Really. You don’t need to be a creeper.
I’ve been trying to tell my side of the story a little at a time. There are a number of reasons for this, including that it’s complex as hell and needs to be put in manageable chunks. Also, it wasn’t fun. Oh sure, I loved parts of it. The travel. Hollywood. The friends I made. Those parts? I love writing about that, because it makes me happy to go back and relive those experiences. But this stuff? This is some of the most awful stuff I ever went through. Especially the stuff I’ll be talking about in this post. Because I’m not a con-artist or a bad person. I actually do feel shitty about things I did, and lies I told. I don’t enjoy reliving betraying my friends, hurting people I loved, shaming myself and my family, and ultimately badly scarring my life.
So let me back up, for those of you who met me later and don’t know my sordid past. First off, stop and go read this. And then read parts four and five of Why I Don’t Believe In God. I have talked about some of this before, and I don’t really care to repeat myself. Especially since Jeanine, the woman who published a book of my guilt and shame, openly said she read very little. She feels perfectly justified in saying I’ve never taken responsibility for myself, and yet doesn’t read the posts that are right fucking here.
Since I said I’d reply point for point to her comment, I’m going to blockquote it. And then I’m going on with my life. Which includes this blog; I am not going to resign myself that I can’t do any good in the world because I fucked up when I was young. I am not going to be silenced by fear. And I am going to keep telling my story in hopes that it helps other people who are there. Hopefully people who won’t have to spend the rest of their lives defending themselves for being victims. Just because someone has made mistakes and hurt people does not mean they deserve to be abused.
In 2003, the Marion County Sheriff came to my door and inquired about the whereabouts of Jordan Wood, whom, the detective claimed, was actually named Amy Player. I called the two of you and asked WTF could possibly be going on. You and “Jordan,” TOGETHER, explained to me that Amy was one of “Jordan’s” ex-girlfriends, and that the two of you had driven Amy to the Oregon Coast and dropped her off. YOU, Abbey, gave me specific details about what Amy was wearing, the exact place where you parted ways, etc. Later in the conversation, I don’t recall if it was you or “Jordan,” but someone pointed out that Amy mentioned she was “sailing into the West.” YOU specifically noted that there was no place to sail along the rocky coast where you dropped Amy off. The two of you “suddenly realized” that sailing into the West is LOTR-speak for dying/killing herself. Oh, so dramatic, all the wailing and gnashing of teeth that followed. A fine performance.
Yes. I did that. We were in a dollar-store parking lot, on a payphone. Jordan had planned out every line of what he was going to say, and exactly what I was supposed to say. There was a script. I had fought against faking his death so that he could live as a man. I still hate that I was involved, although his parents have forgiven me for my part in it. I’m grateful for that, especially now that I have a child. I am still sorry for their pain.They’re nice people; very religious and conservative, and not prepared at all for the child they ended up with. I am still in touch with them, in fact.
And yes, I am most definitely sorry I lied to you. And I know that doesn’t matter, because you will reject both my apology and the truth because you decided long before I started talking that I was forever guilty and bad. Yes, I chose to obey Jordan and lie to you for him. I was legally an adult and responsible for my own actions. However it is also true that Jordan was standing right there, inches away from me, staring into my eyes the entire time, mouthing please, please, please. Surely you remember the way those eyes could bore into you.
As we know, Amy Player and “Jordan” are the same person. You and Jordan deliberately misled me into believing that there was a suicidal young lady with no friends, money or resources, somewhere in Depoe Bay. I argued with the sheriff over this. I tried to convince him to concentrate on finding this poor girl on the coast.
Yep. That also happened, and there’s not a damn thing I can do about it now. And of course I know that Amy Player and Jordan Wood (and Andrew Blake) were and are one person. But at the time, and again, I know you will discard this, I really believed Amy had “died.” That was the only thing that got me to participate. I let myself be convinced that it would be more unkind for Amy’s parents to live with someone impersonating their daughter; that it was better that it be a clean break, that it would work because of blah blah blah elves etc. etc. Whatever it took to convince me, he did it. He convinced you of a lot of things too, and I do not understand why you find it impossible that I was conned by him too.
I agree completely that Amy is a master manipulator. Little Sam also described the cultish atmosphere “Jordan” created just like you did. But nowhere in this blog, Abbey, do I see any acknowledgement of the things YOU did, to contribute to this situation. Do you accept any responsibility for the lies you told? Do you even admit to them? Because you delivered some whoppers, Abbey.
I’m sorry, nowhere in this blog do I accept responsibility? The blog you didn’t read? And you know this how? And you know that I’ve never accepted responsibility personally? Look at your friends list; we have friends in common, and they have forgiven me. I have never claimed I did nothing wrong. It would be less humiliating if your accusations were true. If I just conned you, just did it for money, I could own that and just be sorry. Greed is a motivation anyone can understand. Instead I have to admit that I believed my transgendered girlfriend was also Lord Elrond, my pseudo-father.
You attacked your former friends, sometimes at their place of work, calling them vicious names and telling them in no uncertain terms to go to hell. Maybe you were only doing it because “Jordan” brainwashed you… but YOU did it. Have you accepted any responsibility for hurting those people? Do you even admit to it? Because I’ve talked to at least 3 of them, and they were all shocked and deeply hurt.
Yes, I brutally cut off my friends. And my family; my greatest shame is how much I hurt my mother when I cut her off. With a hand written “95 Thesis” of why she was a bad mother. In Jordan’s handwriting. I can’t even write about that without an actual lump coming into my throat. Most of that book was “recovered memories” that never happened. I am forever blessed that she is, contrary to what Jordan said, an incredible mother, who was ready to catch me and help me rebuild. We ceremoniously burned that book after (again) a lot of family therapy.
Some friends that I cut off have forgiven me, including ones who you have “heard from.”Others did not accept my apology, and that’s their right. Because I was a cunt to them (and I don’t use that word lightly). But I did in fact apologize and try to own my behavior. And I most certainly did not cut anyone off at their place of work. My mother, I left in a restaurant in Los Angeles. One friend I attacked in her home. Two I argued with and left in the toy store at Lloyd Center Mall in Portland. And the big blowout in San Dimas, when the convention fell apart? That was…in the apartment in San Dimas. You are the one who came to my place of business. And yes, it does count as a workplace. It was a legal (if not terribly dignified) pursuit, and it was my livelihood. And you came there, screamed and yelled, interfered with tourists taking pictures and then bragged about it.
You took money from me (and from many others), telling lies about where it was going and why it was needed. You were convicted of charity fraud by the State of Oregon, specifically because you stated, on stage in front of hundreds of witnesses, that $3000 had been raised for Reading is Fundamental, but you never sent them the money. Have you made any effort to set that right? Do you even admit to doing it? ‘Coz I have a copy of the ruling from the Dept. of Justice, if you need a reminder.
No, that is not true Jeanine, and you know it. I was not convicted of anything. I was accused and investigated, and I signed a voluntary agreement (that I also still have a copy of) There is a big fucking difference. Go look at the copy you have. It says right across it that it is not an admission of guilt. And it isn’t for claiming we made money and stealing it (which never happened). It was for running a raffle without the correct documentation and for not having written permission from RiF to use their name in any charity endeavors. I have never been arrested, never been tried in a court, and never been convicted. Jordan was charged with identity theft, but the case was dropped when it became apparent he was trying to change his identity, not steal someone else’s. He was arrested, he went to the courthouse, where those charges were dropped. Period. The fact that I can’t solicit donations in the State of Oregon is the only lasting effect of this agreement.
I was incompetent, I’ll fess up to that immediately. But I was not a thief. At the time I made the announcement in the movie theater, that’s how much money I thought we had made. I still have the file of receipts that I sent you copies of waay back in the day. We weren’t stealing the money; we were amateurs. Things cost far more than they should have. Such as the permits for the music festival (which I wasn’t even a part of; that was while I was emptying my house), which I guess ended up costing more because they weren’t done in advance? Which is Jordan’s standard modus operandi; everything’s an emergency. Like those two kids who just got married and suddenly needed money for immigration paperwork. Like how he frantically tried to cover that he’d never booked any airfare for the convention. And on top of that, I didn’t handle the finances. Jordan claimed he knew all about it, because of all his secret Hollywood insider knowledge that I believed he had.
Yes, we borrowed money from you and others, and that money was to move to Los Angeles and get settled in, so we could run our fanclub from there. We used the money…to move to Los Angeles. That the fanclub fell apart (i.e. exploded because of lies and incompetence) does not retroactively make the intent of the move a lie. We weren’t living high on the hog either. At the time, I poured just about everything I had into Bit of Earth. And I didn’t have anything but unemployment (which I had rightfully, as I was dropping off exactly the required number of applications, and as I was laid off and that’s what unemployment’s for.) Once we were in Hollywood, you gloried on reporting that we were begging. We were. Not conning strangers for money or thrills, but pretending that we were stranded without gas so we could buy enough to eat. For a few weeks we lived on produce we picked in the neighborhood in San Dimas. To this day, oranges taste like hunger to me.
Notice a theme here?
I sure do. You take half-truths, trump them up and bleat them all over. Which doesn’t help stop Jordan, which I also want to do. It isn’t helping his victims now, and it made it that much harder for me to get out. Ultimately, between your own lies (oh yes, I think deliberate misrepresentation counts as lying when you do it too) and your absurd insistence on harping on the money and on calling him “her,” you’re helping Jordan hurt other people.
I hope for your sake, and your child’s sake, that you are sincere in your desire to overcome this insane incident in your life. Maybe you ought to think a little about accepting that you were an active participant, not just a poor hapless victim. Maybe you ought to think a little about making reparations. Because I don’t think you can truly heal from this until you acknowledge your role in it. That’s my $.02
Maybe you ought to think about actually reading what I’ve written before you start screaming that I’m not sincere. And perhaps you don’t know shit about the years of recovery it took just to get where I am now. You can keep your $.02; I’m worth more. If it makes you feel any better, you have unquestionably gotten your money’s worth in suffering. You drove us on to the streets. You personally ensured we were homeless. You openly said you hoped we would be forced into prostitution. You silenced me for years, and allowed Jordan to start up his newest cult and hurt more people. Way to fight for what’s right, Jeanine. Good job. I know you were hurt in all this too, and I’m sorry for that. I’m sorry you had to deal with the fallout, that you had to stress about money. But in your zeal to get him locked up you’re handing him the keys to keep his victims trapped. He uses your inaccurate and dramatized versions of the truth to bolster his claims. And as long as you refuse to acknowledge the extent of his evil (and the actual ways he carries it out), you’re serving him too.