The following is an account of how the physical identity of Sihanoukville man was confirmed as that of ‘Jed McKenna’.
Let’s recap the story so far.
- I met a stranger in Sihanoukville who made an effort to get noticed. I remembered his face in detail. I conveyed this to ‘Jed’ who neither confirmed or denied it. We continued corresponding via emails.
- The man from Sihanoukville danced with a bargirl in Phnom Penh, and I had a good chance to observe him. I said nothing to Jed (Kenneth) about it. We still corresponded.
In my initial interaction with ‘Jed’ three and a half years ago I had no interest in knowing his identity, the provenance of his stories or what he looked like. But as the months went by, my intuitive feeling was voicing itself louder and louder. There were too many discrepancies between Jed’s words and his actual way of being. Many things he said didn’t check out against what he actually did. And I started wondering. After all, his main message is ‘think for yourself‘, right? So I did. Like many others I went to check things on the internet, silently observed speculative discussions on various forums (remember, no speculation!), perused Wisefool Press etc. etc.
All leads always turned out to be the dead end. Then one day in February this year (2017) I was idling at work during lunchtime, doing nothing in particular, and absent mindedly put Jed’s name in Google search on my mobile phone.
I had done this particular search many times before. Nothing of interest ever came up, and I didn’t expect much. Yet, what it yielded that day – had been sitting there for nearly two years. Waiting for me to have met the man first so that I could recognise him in that video and connect the dots?
Nah. Nothing ‘supernatural’ in any of this.
Google flashed the search results, and in the very first link was a face. I stared at it for a minute, trying to comprehend what I was seeing and already knowing that once I click on the link – there will be no going back. Then I clicked on it.
It took me to a website that housed a video. The video was titled ‘Jed McKenna’, and I could have dismissed this completely, except… there in the video was the Sinanoukville man with the all knowing eyes. He was looking into the computer camera, preparing to record himself playing the guitar. The room was definitely somewhere in Cambodia, I’d recognise the decor, the installations, the design in a heartbeat, because I live in something similar and have seen enough Cambodian barang accommodation to know.
Then he started singing. The song was for a woman, because it was a well known song, but he changed one word in it. I watched him, mesmerised by the discovery. He finished playing, said ‘Thank you’ and the video ended. I sat there aware of one thing only… what was in the lines on a computer screen, in forum words, in books and in human minds of Jed image – was so far off from what I had just seen that I wanted to cry.
I saw a beautifully vulnerable human being. The body language told me everything I needed to know about the man. I understood the angst of the books and an uncompromised stance of the words. I understood why we were so similar and how we both recognised it early on.
I saw a natural feeler, just like I am by birthright. A feeler who killed emotion, but could never kill the feeling. I saw someone naturally serious and very distant internally, despite the song’s intent. The man was ultimately alone within, and this alone-ness was very familiar to me.
I then got up, went to the computer and sent him an email, and later another one.
The man with all knowing eyes… the one who stopped and looked at me.. who told me without uttering a word ‘Now you that you know, go and live life as you see fit’…….
…….that man was you.
I found you.
Jed replied with one sentence and this time without his silly ‘love ya’ signature. I understood that my discovery came as somewhat of a shock to him. That was the last time I received an email from ‘Jed McKenna’, and ‘Jed McKenna’ would soon become Kenneth.
We would run into one another three more times, and that would ultimately lead to unveiling his legal identity, birth, origins, his past, names of the people who used to know him…. everything that he went to such great lengths to conceal.
The photos below are from that video. Kenneth has been told about it, and I suggested he removes the video.