Life in the F4s L4n3!1


Months ago, I was idling in the #onigiri IRC channel that I frequent when I saw a message directed to me. Acy, the wacky channel throw-rug with chickens on the brain, left a single link in the otherwise quiet chatroom: “bokmaren revenge ovo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuuKt7GiCew.” I watched the video and simply laughed at this pathetic excuse for a “revenge” towards me (for what, I am not certain). Little did I know at the time just how completely it would infect my life.

The video contained a “how to draw” video of an extremely derpy Sonic the Hedgehog while an extremely distorted and clipped version of the music found in Sonic the Hedgehog‘s Green Hill Zone level played in the background. At the very end of the video, the “artist” writes “come on, step it up!” in a profound display of broken spelling, butchering an already somewhat corny sounding catch-phrase from Sonic.

As life would go on, I would find the siren's song of SANIC HEGEHOG playing in my head. Paradoxically, this fascination with the video turned to admiration, and finally adoration as I began to understand the profoundness of Sanic. As I began to browse related Youtube videos to see what else had been "Sanic'd" with his presence, I would share my findings with my friend Balance. Maybe it was the sheer ridiculousness of the video. Maybe it was how accurately the broken Sonic drawing and music captured the essence of the prepubescent Sonic fanbase. Regardless, our Skype sessions late at night would often devolve into sharing Sanic videos (some of which had a surprising amount of effort put in them just to showcase "Sanic Hegehog"). Oftentimes we would draw our own Sanics. We spread Sanic to our friends in real life. Finally, I decided to perform the masterstroke: I would introduce Sanic to complete strangers using a cunning plan where no one would realize what is happening until it is too late.

As I was flying back from a medical school interview, I was thinking about one of the activities that they made us do. As part of the interview, they had us explain a picture to our partner so that they would draw it without seeing the original-- the interest to the interviewers being the participants' patience and perseverance during the task. With a time limit of 10 minutes, it was difficult to have a picture replicated in this manner without it looking deformed in some way.

That got me thinking... what if I repeated this activity, but had people try and draw Sonic the Hedgehog? As the images of people unknowingly drawing Sanic filled my mind, a plan began to form in my head. As president of one of the pre-medical organizations at my school, I would have people engage in this activity for the sole purpose of watching them mess up the drawing and ending up with Sanic instead. I would have to disguise this event somehow-- since this was something that I had encountered during a medical school interview, I decided to brand the activity as "interview practice." As I grew more and more excited about the prospect of having people unknowingly draw Sanics (and being inevitably taken aback at how their drawing would look in comparison to the real Sonic drawing), I decided to slowly inject more and more "Sanic" into my "event."

I got excited when I saw "SANIC Time" in my inbox. Sadly the guy was just asking what time the event was going to be =(

First off, I decided to pad the "Sanic interview" with more types of interviews to better distinguish the event as a means to improve one's interview skills (and ultimately turned it into a full-fledged mock medical school interview day). Having done this, I decided to push the envelope a little bit and see if I could start referring to the event as the "Sanic Event" without being too obvious. While it was a bit of a stretch, I officially named the event as our Simulated and Normalized Interview Center or SANIC for short because the name was "too long to type out." As I slowly eased the acronym into circulation, before I knew it, my officers and club members were casually using the term to refer to the event, often causing me to have to stifle my laughter since I would always think of Sanic Hegehog.

I wasn't ready to stop there. I decided to make up a mock "medical school" that the interviewers in the event would be "working for," seemingly to add realism to the experience that members were interviewing for medical school. In reality, I wanted an excuse to make up a sanicy-sounding university name so that I could stamp its logo and seal on all event documents. After careful deliberation, I eventually came up with a plausible sounding name: The University of San Icarus, abbreviated SAN IC. An added bonus to this abbreviation was the fact that at this point I had confused the issue as to why our event was called "Sanic" so much that everyone just sort of rolled with it. Since Balance is a graphic designer, I asked him to make a logo and seal for this "university" and he obliged, making them Sanic-colored with pictures of Sanic faintly visible in the background. As a final touch, I requested that the Latin surrounding the "school seal" would read along the lines of "Gotta go fast."

The final and most important task was all that remained-- designing the Sonic picture that people would draw. I had to be careful-- the source image had to be simple enough that they would get close to finishing the drawing, but complex enough that they would not completely draw something else. I decided on a rather simple image of Sonic and kept a few of the lines in tact on the sheet members were to draw their image on. In a completely unintentional twist however (yes really) I accidentally altered the drawing a little bit differently on the paper the person was to draw on and the paper their partner had which showed what lines were already drawn in. Having thoroughly beta-tested the setup on my friends, we were at last ready for the big day.

All in all, the day was a huge success with almost universal positive feedback both from the attendees and the faculty members that helped. The director of the Texas medical school application service had flown in from the state capitol. The director of the pre-health department was present. A number of professors from the university were helping out. Everyone did a great job and everyone got to partake in SANIC. As a last minute addition, I also decided to give two of the interviewers pseudonyms: "Emmi Ross" and "Miles Rower," with appropriately colored name-tags to boot. Perhaps most importantly of all however, the plan for the creation of Sanics succeeded flawlessly. It was an amazing feeling... I dreamt it up, I made it happen.

A few pictures of the event in action-- it was a rather smooth set-up! :

Balance and I chalk this scheme to be an enormously successful one-- a masterfully engineered means to spread Sanic to the masses (while being legitimately helpful at the same time). I cannot be happier with the results, so without further ado, here is the gallery of all collected Sanic drawings, in order of creation:

4 Comments

  1. balance
    balance
    Rooftop Dreamer
    Class 1-B
    Seat no. 6
    Valid from: 04/29/2013 at 2:32 am

    To see the event unfold is comparable to seeing a dream come true. It was perhaps one of the most exciting event to see happen.

    To think that this chain would all start from someone named Acy as just a pass by dewm to Nightmaren. To its grace, I have slowly become more and more Sanic-ed and thus have come here. I do recall Nightmaren mentioning how funny it would be if the blessings of Sanic were to be spread unknowingly to many others.

    The day then arrived when Nightmaren approached me with wonderful news. “Cow, I have the perfect idea on how to Sanic everyone.” The idea was so stunning and appealing that I was simply stunned and my curiosity was screaming. Each day was exciting as Nightmaren gave me more and more ideas on how this would happen. When I was assigned the task to design some of the logos, I was thrilled and started immediately.

    Unlike most of my compositions, I had severe difficulty on not intentionally doing certain things I would normally do for others. Regardless of this, I was able to push forward and bring out masterpiece compositions for this event.

    Never have I felt so proud to be part of such an amazing event. I am only saddened by the fact that I was not there to experience the event. Despite this, I found much joy in the fact that it did happen. One day, I aspire to bring this to my area and replicate the scenario and bring my own results! This will require heavy planning on my part, but it will be necessary for such a delicate process!

    I thank you, Nightmaren, for sanicing. God bless seris owo

    Reply

  2. seris
    Transfer Student
    Class 3-C
    Valid from: 04/20/2013 at 7:36 am

    I applaud you retardedness Nightmaren and Balance! Publicly trolling everyone with this event while doing something legit and noteworthy – even getting rewarded for it! Simply ingenious – I expect no less from you two.

    Put it this way Praxis, if Nightmaren were not affected with Sanic, you wouldn’t have had this partially pointless event come to being! Life would be all hum-drum and relatively less exciting – Nightmaren would just be Nightmaren. There won’t be that additional Sanic feel to them or Balance for that matter – you won’t get to kinda live life on the edge, being on your toes and anticipate what these two Sanic-die-hard-fan trolls would do!

    Reply

  3. Club Participant
    Class 4-A
    Seat no. 4

    Sanic and Sanic-related derpness has caused me great suffering for almost the entirety of my senior year in college — from planning SANIC as one of the officers, to during the event as the Sanic drawing interviewer, and then all the times in between when I’d be subjected to Sanic images, videos, and wallpapers (made specially for me) because I was friends with the troll that had allowed Sanic to permeate their entire life and being — they even put Sonic/Sanic on my birthday cake. It was conflicting, feeling plagued by Sanic while also knowing that this troll was honoring me by assigning me as the drawing-task interviewer. Or maybe it was that I was helping this troll with their master Sanic-trolling scheme when I’d been Sanic-trolled by this troll a countless number of times.

    But, in spite of all this, I begrudgingly look back on these events with pride. The trolling SANIC event was successful, I had contributed to it, and I had been aware of the event’s true purpose — which essentially turned me into a troll and gave me the opportunity to bond with my friends/fellow trolls on a deeper-but-seemingly-retarded-and-superficial level. Without Sanic, the troll — Nightmaren — would not have evolved into a super-troll, this event would not have been planned, and I wouldn’t have gained these experiences. My senior year is probably more memorable because of it, and so now I regard Sanic not just with loathing, but also affection. Begrudging affection.

    I’ve been infected.

    Reply

    • Nightmaren
      Student Council
      会長 | Class 4-B
      Seat no. 1

      So here I am, coming back to this post over five years later and reliving how we made this happen back when we were still college students. I am, in fact, typing this while sitting in a hotel in Dallas, just a few miles away from UTD. I find it hard to believe that so many years have passed since Senior Year, when you, Cameron, Charlie, and I would spend our days screwing around.

      You may ask then, why did I come back to this post? First off, the subject matter is reason enough, but today I arrived in town to watch my brother get engaged. During the ceremony, many of his college friends (also from UTD) were in attendance and, as I was introducing myself at the guest tables, imagine my surprise when someone calls me out.

      “Wait, [NIGHTMAREN]? *stutters in disbelief* YOU’RE THE ONE THAT MADE SANIC!”

      And mind, the girl before me is not someone from our college era. She is not even someone from the time when my brother was at college, which began three years after ours. She was the younger sister of one of my brother’s friends during his time at UTD. This girl, as it happens, now holds the very same officer position that you did at the time of SANIC’s creation.

      So imagine then, what a wave of nostalgia it was as this girl is in front of me asking things like “what kind of person would make something like this?” and “is this one big joke?” She described to me in detail how she had dusted off the materials used for the event, a pile of scrawled notes that had been passed down year after year, and agonized over its contents to try and replicate the event according to its curiously obsessive specifications. To this day, the club reawakens SANIC to grace the campus as a yearly event and, to this day, the materials are largely untouched from their original form as created by the mysterious “upperclassman” whose name has slowly become lost to time.

      Yet here I was. Spring class of 2013. All I could do was smile at the girl, a Sophomore at the school where we had lived out our days so long ago. The legacy of our senior year yet remains. SANIC, along with its characteristic ability to simultaneously invoke pride, confusion, and rage, has shown no signs of slowing down.

      Reply

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Ah. A transfer student. For your safety, I advise you to register at the faculty office first. Being caught without an ID can result in... severe repercussions.