The dirtiest secrets from All-American Rejects’ Dirty Little Secret video, ranked in order of dirtiness

The All-American Rejects’ 2005 classic revealed some big secrets. But some were dirtier than others…

The dirtiest secrets from All-American Rejects’ Dirty Little Secret video, ranked in order of dirtiness
Kieron Passaway

You remember the video. Of course you remember the video. Simple and brilliant and poignant and slightly cringy, too: The All-American Rejects rocking out in a slightly wet garage interspersed with shots of people displaying their deepest and dirtiest secrets on pretty A5 cards. The end result? An undeniably fun and aggressively unforgettable 194 seconds.

Now, a question: would you remember the song Dirty Little Secret if it wasn’t for the video? Probably, maybe not, most likely yes – it’s a great tune. But that’s not the point. Even if it was a flimsy handshake of a release, you’d still remember it. Because of the video. The All-American Rejects are good at this, using creative productions in order to leave a deeper dent in the one million and one horsepower automobile that is the music industry.

Which is a powerful thing, one that could easily be a wider, more profound and considered conversation in which we discuss how The All-American Rejects leak from your mouth more than they really deserve. Consider Gives You Hell, my dude. But, really, who has the time and energy for that, in this economy? You have emails to ignore; Tinder to swipe; existentialism to consider. So, considering that: what was the dirtiest secret in the Dirty Little Secret video?

Yes, a list, this is it. This is a good use of our time. Let’s do it.

1I had gay sex at church camp three times

You've got to applaud this one, really. Like, to not only get laid three times at a camp, which could not have been longer than six weeks with largely the same pool of people – who were most likely not only heterosexual but homophobic, too – to choose from. But also to do so entirely against God’s unforgiving wish? Intimidatingly large energy.

Dirtiness verdict: Squeaky clean.

2I waste office supplies because I hate my boss

This is a flex. Obvious, isn’t it? On set, he’s sniggering. He’s seen the other secrets. 'Fools,' he thinks. 'They’re going to make absolute fools of themselves.' This guy? He knows this isn’t dirty. He knows this will go down well, this is his chance, his platform. 'Remember the Dirty Little Secret video?' He’s saying now, taking a drag of his vogue cigarette, staring into the distance, leather jacket on, hairline receding way back. 'The office supplies?' he exclaims, 'Ha… yeah, forgot about that. Oh yeah, that was me. My boss? Clueless. Absolutely fucking clueless. Yeah, I’ll call us a cab.'

Dirtiness verdict: The mad lad used it as an opportunity to get girls.

3I leave poetry in library books

You can see the mental gymnastics here: the destruction of public property – unlawful, selfish, and disrespectful, so it's a dirty secret, yes. But consider it: you take a book out, you’re only enjoying it relatively - you know, checking your phone every few pages, for nothing other than intellectual freedom from the mediocrity you’re burdened to. A waste of time, this book, but you have to finish it, because you’re weird like that. Then page 57, you see a poem. It’s skinless, raw, vulnerable. You’re crying now, smearing the ink on the page and everything. This book, although bad, has a story, one you didn’t influence and yet one that has cosmically entered your brain’s chemical structure pulling on synapses that have been left untouched for years.

Dirtiness verdict: Surprisingly clean.

4I thought I was in love with him

You know those times when you’ve been given a task, and you’re like, 'This is easy, man. I’m going to smash this task out in 10 minutes. Piece of piss.' And then you do that task, subsequently return it to whoever asked you to do that task – could be your mum, your boss, your partner – and they’re like, 'What? Literally… What?' You missed the point. The brief, it went over your head. This isn’t a dirty secret. You have misunderstood the point, I Thought I Was In Love With Him-Lady. We will not be paying your invoice.

Dirtiness verdict: This is not a dirty secret, more so a misunderstanding of an acutely simple brief.

5I pee in the sink

My man, respect for coming to this video shoot and expressing this. It’s a worthy discussion, one that we're going to open now: peeing in a sink's intrinsic dirtiness is situational. I) A house party where all the toilets are occupied for reasons we shall not discuss, and you’re busting, bladder so full it could be used for a Victorian football game: use the sink. Clean. II) Home alone with a toilet available and you go for the bathroom sink anyhow: dirty. Tough to measure, you see. But as it is in a dirty context it’s most likely the latter, so we know the answer.

Dirtiness verdict: You dirty man, use the toilet!

6I’m in love with my best friend

Plot twist, this one. Sounds normal, doesn’t it? We’ve all been there. But wait, the camera pans out and boom: he has a wedding ring on. Unless his husband or wife are his best friend, this is a dirty one. He understood the brief and went all the way in.

Dirtiness verdict: Dog poo that hasn’t been picked up and you accidentally stand in it and catch a whiff of it when you re-enter a building? That level of dirty.

7Everything I told my psychologist was a complete and total lie

Dude. Psychologists – as everyone with underlying anxiety (i.e everyone in late-capitalism) – knows are fucking expensive. £60 an hour upwards. If you’re lying in those sessions, you’re only kidding yourself.

Dirtiness verdict: Shit's low, dude.

8I like the smell of my own poop

You animal.

Dirtiness verdict: They like the smell of their own poop, man. You don’t need us to tell you that's not right.

What is the dirtiest Dirty Little Secret?

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