Dear Mr. Six (I refuse to learn your real name),

I bet you thought you had gotten away with it—that I would never become wise to your little ruse. Well guess what buddy, it may have taken a decade and some change but I've finally caught on. I know your secret.

You see, a year full of isolating away in my childhood bedroom has given a guy time to think. And by time to think, I mean hours spent aimlessly wandering the internet until I was down a Wikipedia rabbit hole so deep that even Alice couldn't climb her way out.

It started out innocently enough. I was checking up on a '90s icon, Loonette the Clown from the critically acclaimed children's program The Big Comfy Couch (she's doing well, btw). But as I basked in my childhood nostalgia, I began to dig deeper into other aspects of my youth. There were queries like: “Did Heinz actually produce purple ketchup or am I making that up?” and “What was the name of that thing you skipped around your leg?” (it was called a Skip-it, oddly enough). Hours went by and somewhere in the middle of my sentimental fever dream was this all-important question:

“Is the dancing old man from the Six Flags commercials still alive?”

And that's when I found out the truth about you, Mr. Six. Not only are you indeed ALIVE but you're not even elderly! That man that I saw on the screen—that I had grown up IDOLIZING—was actually just some hack in disguise. Your real identity is Danny Teeson, a 45-year-old dance choreographer from England (okay, fine I learned your real name but it was only out of spite).

And let's make something clear: the fact that you played a character in a commercial is not the source of my grievance. I am not so dense that I can't comprehend that people like Flo from Progressive, and Lily from AT&T, and even that talking lizard from Geico are all just actors. But, I never looked up to some lizard. I looked up to you.

In 2004, when you came on the scene, I was merely an impressionable child with not a care in the world. And I'm embarrassed to admit this but the way you gyrated to “We Like To Party” by Eurodance group Vengaboys inspired me. I remember thinking to myself how cool it would be if I could still have that same energy when I was a frail old fuck.

But now it turns out that all that joy you brought me was fraudulent. You're my own personal Lance Armstrong and this is where I chop off my metaphorical Livestrong bracelet. And sorry Vengaboys, but I will never be listening to that god-awful song ever again.

I wish I could just get over it, but this truth will scar me for the rest of my life. For the last week, I have found myself questioning the legitimacy of every elderly person that crosses my path. Just yesterday I knocked the cane out from underneath some old broad at the grocery store just because the bonnet she was wearing seemed a bit too on the nose. Sure she fell and broke her hip, but doctors weren't 100% confident that it wouldn't have eventually happened either way so I was in the clear.

I hope and pray that one day I can find it in my heart to forgive you. And if upon receiving this letter, you feel that two lifetime passes to all Six Flags locations would help expedite that process, I will respectfully accept.

Your Former Fan,