So Hard…

Sigh… OK, here goes.

Blackie’s retirement has left a massive void in the Chili Pepper community. Not only have we lost our “go to” source of information and fan in-between with the band, but it’s created issues within the community. Before, he was Head Honcho and there was no point competing with that as it was a given and he would also steer the community- I’ve seen him have a discrete word with someone about their behaviour when there were issues. Now the gaping void he’s left has nobody to steer it and some people are prepared to do anything to step into it. In the ten years that I’ve been heavily involved with the CP community online, I’ve never know it to be like this with the back-stabbing and bullying that is going on in some areas. There is some pretty unpleasant stuff happening at times on social media.

There has also been a split in the fan base leading to some of the fans seeing themselves as being better than others. And somehow from that an inner circle of FANS has formed stepping into the Blackie void. Obviously, some of that inner circle totally deserve to be there as they are loyal and dedicated fans and I’m not commenting on the rights or wrongs of it but just making observations. However, there is a section of those inner fans that are desperate to keep other fans out in whatever way they can and they seem to be attracting an element of like minded fans who want to be in that inner circle who are now running around sending abusive messages, trying to force fan pages to close  way to do, etc. in order to be able to do so. Other fans are totally on the outside and left out and resentment is growing over it all and it’s adding to the fan base tension and split.

OK, why I’m writing this…

I’m an “out” and that has been repeatedly pointed out to me but I’ve weathered the storm. However, recently things have got really unpleasant and I’ve had a lot of issues with some members of the online community within social media and the threats/bullying/ “self-improvement” messages (I get it! And thank you, I’m just commenting and understand without the need for anymore as a result of this post) some of the real side-stage pass possessing fans and the “wannabe” fans like to send to outsiders like me. It’s been really unpleasant and hard and has led to lots of consideration about me continuing to be involved as many of you know.

And then at Reading I had a moment (OK, a concert length one!). I’ve put so much into supporting the band and their charities and projects and helping the community as much as I can. And I was standing there being jostled in a crowd unable to see much (being 5ft 2″ in a crowd isn’t good!) and looking at ants in the distance on the stage knowing the fans from the inner circle would be side-stage with perfect views and hadn’t had to queue or be pushed around. And it made me wonder what the hell I was doing. Then I got home and had the disappointment of my rubbish pics as I was too far away and too short to take anything decent; knowing I would have shared them with the community and couldn’t.

As a result, I really started to think about whether I carry on with the websites and decided to give myself until the end of this year to decide as it is such a massive decision to take. I’ve put so much into this and it’s hard to walk away from it. I’ve managed to keep this going all through the hell and chaos of the last few years. I’ve nursed two people, my mother (Alzheimer’s Disease) and husband (alcohol addiction), through terminal conditions within three years, been widowed, seen my whole life turned upside down and still kept it going but I know in my heart I’ve now come to the end of the line. I don’t need the hassle from certain quarters and I don’t need to feel rejected and foolish for wasting my time on something I cannot achieve in because I’m an outsider. Ten years and I don’t even have full band autographs which says it all really.

It’s time to step aside and leave things to those real fans as fan pages really ought to be run by them. I’ve got tickets to two concerts in December and I will go and enjoy them just as a face in the crowd and leave the photo taking and reporting to the proper fans. And hopefully I’ll meet a lot of friends and that is the good thing to come from all of this and is something I really do value. A few posts by me will sneak on here I’m sure around the time of the UK concerts (I’ll make a final post at some point if nothing else as this is just an update rather than a proper goodbye). I’ve paid for domain names and hosting for the next year so I’ll leave the websites (this one and anthonykiedis.net) up in case people want the info on them (I might tweak a few things as there were some things I’ve always meant to add/update) or want to read the 50000+ magazine pages I’ve scanned 🙂 But I won’t be involved in them or the Facebook pages any more from 2017. Peace <3

Rebecca (Squitherwitch)

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About Squitherwitch

I’ve been a RHCP fan ever since I heard Under The Bridge way back in the mists of time. I brought BSSM and then their other albums but RHCP were just another band I listened to (I was a massive GNR fan at the time) but that changed once I heard Californication! I’ve been involved with the online RHCP scene since 2006, getting more heavily involved as time passed, and eventually the time was right to set up my own website dedicated to the band and thus, TheChiliSource was born. Since then I’ve also set up AnthonyKiedis.net along with various Twitter, Facebook & Tumblr pages connected to my websites and RHCP.

11 thoughts on “So Hard…

  1. Rebecca,
    Fandom is a fickle and, well, fanatical playing field. I’ve watched from the sidelines for decades and I agree with you–if it devolves into a cliquey pecking order, what’s the point? Ironic that a band that started our as a pack of misfit nerds could turn elitist.
    Social media exploits the mundane, makes heroes of the ordinary and turns the extraordinary into dross .
    I’ve really enjoyed viewing your body of work online. Your commentaries are always thoughtful, respectful and lovely.
    Thank you for your effort and dedication Rebecca! May 2017 hold lots of expansive, positive adventures for YOU and those you hold dear.

  2. In life it seems we can put in all of our best efforts only to be alienated by those we love. I completely understand your hurt from different experiences but still a perspective of love, soul, and dedication. No one can take that kind of heart from you. I am so sorry your effort was never recognized by the inner circle. What I can say in a lifetime of being a loner and an outsider is I appreciate friendship more than materialistic things. Autographs books tshirts etc those are just things and nothing takes away from experience and memories. Thank you for your friendship and the information you dedicated yourself in sharing to the whole fan base the ins and outs. Love and blessings!

    • Exactly. And thank you. The friendships I take from this are the important thing and carrying on was affecting some of them as they were being dragged into some of the unpleasantness that’s been happening. There were so many things but with one particular one friendship, any comment by that friend would result in some sort of retribution within minutes. It happened time and time again. I would watch that friend comment on my posts on social media and know within 10 minutes I would be receiving some form of hate mail/revenge attack because some people objected ti us being friendly. Thankfully, I don’t think my friend was contacted (unlike some other friends who were) although that was a threat that was issued to me. It’s a friendship I really value (not for RHCP reasons) and I’d chose that, and my other friends, over what has been happening. It got to the point that it’s not worth it.

  3. I am a relatively new RHCP and a devout lover of Anthony Kiedis after reading Scar Tissue. I was so upset to discover that the band no longer does meet and greets and seem so untouchable now. It hurts when you put so much effort into your passion, as you have, and it goes unrecognized. Have you at least ever gotten to meet any of them? I am going to my first concert in April of next year but I am truly heartbroken that I can’t even write to the band. It seems as though social media has made some people more rude, uppity and “entitled”. With my type of personality I get hurt easily so I rarely step out as a leader of anything and am more of a follower. I am afraid that I will feel intimidated at this concert. Anyway…I just found your website this morning and was glad to read what you had to say. Did Blackie help fans that had a hard time letting the band know that they were loved? Like I said I am a new fan and feel so hopeless. Will you continue to post your thoughts?

    • Hey… Thank you. I totally agree. Blackie did so much for the fans. I’ve met Chad twice and he’s a total sweetheart! You’ll be fine at the concert I’m sure. I’ve met some amazing people at concerts 🙂

      I might update a few things on here and post any magazine scans but I won’t post news, etc. Keep in touch on Facebook- I’ve just replied to your message. Nice to meet you 🙂

  4. I clearly understand your post Rebecca. This is by far the best fan site that I’ve come across (been Chili Pepper Fan for about 17 years) so letting you go it’s hard for me too. I knew that doing all of these would have an end, specially if the band is not involved into fan base community management. Sill, we appreciate so much what you have done. So much hard work only speaks good from you, and even though we might never meet in person let me tell you: I’ve been able to know you thanks on your website. Good vibes only!

    • Thank you; that is so sweet and means a lot <3 The sites will be here until next October at least as I've paid for hosting until then and I'll probably renew that- I can't bring myself to take them down yet as so much work has gone into them- so they can be an archive resource at least. I will also add magazine scans- have the latest Clash one on order as couldn't buy it in the shops.

  5. RHCP is nowhere without their fans, I can clearly see AK is forgetting where he came from… I know fame can change the way of feeling and thinking. But when you mindfully choose that path you should gracefully deal with all consequences. LOVE your fans. Be thankful everyday. Don’t be mad at people for wanting to see you or take a picture with you. You can’t expect people to be a fan and keep building higher walls around you. I’m sure it’s uncomfortable at times but AK seriously looks miserable and unhappy when he sees fans.
    I can not even imagine how you must feel Beccy. Invested so much of your life in being an amazing fan. I think your decision is brave and Im happy for you!
    I was at their concert in Amsterdam, and while i loved the music ( and paid 600e for two good tickets ) I couldn’t get rid of this weird feeling after it was over. Like it was just another night in their busy tour schedule and they couldn’t wait to go to their hotel. lack of JOY ? Can’t explain it better
    Anyway
    I hope things change soon.

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