Geebus, this series has gotten long, but I think we’re finally nearing the end. Part 6 should be the last. At least, I hope it is because this has kinda been exhausting.
Although Nightmaren and I know each other IRL, and have known each other since freshman year of undergrad, they feel more like an internet friend to me. I’d say at least half (if not more) of our communication throughout undergrad was through instant messaging. As such, most of their influence on me deals with how I interact with the internet. I’m pretty sure I have to give them all the credit for me being somewhat able to emulate one of the common dialects of the internet, where letters go missing, and sometimes words too. I don’t do it all that well — it takes a great deal of effort to truly type brokenly — but Nightmaren is a master.
You know, if it weren’t for them, you wouldn’t even be reading this blog right now because it wouldn’t exist. I had a Xanga way back when, but stopped keeping up with it after a few years. The posts on there were also . . . cringe-worthy? I have the posts from that account imported to this blog; they’re just set to private. Maybe one day I’ll make them public, so that you can see how I started and progressed over the years. I may have already given this warning in another post, but a lot of these Xanga posts were bad. There are so many different font colors used, and I’m pretty sure that one post had all the sentences highlighted in random colors.
In any case, after showing me their blog and subsequently finding out that I had blogged in the past, Nightmaren motivated me to start doing it again. Of course, you can see from my blog archive that I haven’t been particularly successful with doing it on a regular basis, but it’s gotten a bit better since the ADHD diagnosis a little over a year and a half ago. Has it already been that long? I know I said it wouldn’t happen quickly, but I feel like I haven’t really made any noteworthy progress at all.
Anyway, whereas Samee and Charlie are the ones who really got me into gaming, Nightmaren was the one who got me to streaming. Not that I do that very often, nor does anyone watch me, but hey, it’s gotten me to interact more with people on the internet . Meaning ones that I don’t already know IRL. Because that has pretty much been the extent of my experience up until this past spring. But I’ll get into that later.
While most of the things I associate with Nightmaren are related to the internet, they also had a singularly grand impact on me in person as the president of Molding Doctors during our senior year of undergrad. Before that year, this organization was rather lackluster, and one of those types that you were a member of mainly so that you could put it on your med school application (back when that was still my goal). I remember that meeting during which they had officer elections — there couldn’t have been more than 10 people, and half of those were running for officer positions. At first, I was probably only glad for Nightmaren winning the presidency because they were my friend. Then, once our senior year started, I was glad because they pretty much completely revamped the way the organization’s events and meetings were conducted, which made it much more energetic and enjoyable.
I should mention now that Nightmaren really enjoys trolling people. They also have an innate flair for it, and make use of it daily. Now, I realize the traditional (urbandictionary) definition of a troll has a negative connotation, and that nowadays someone might accuse someone of being a troll simply for saying or doing something that they don’t agree with. But Nightmaren isn’t either of those types of trolls. After a while of scrolling through the various definitions of a “troll” on urbandictionary, the following one is the closest description to what Nightmaren does.
“Trolling is a hobby in the same vein as prank phone calls, and the true objective of trolling is to be clever and creative in getting a reaction out of the troll victims.”
Let me tell you, Nightmaren is particularly ingenious. Prior to that year, Molding Doctors held a suture clinic every spring for their members to partake in as the “big event” of the year. It was pretty much the only thing they had for attracting new members. Well, Nightmaren created a new event — a mock interview day that a limited number of members could participate in. We recruited faculty and students to act as interviewers, a variety of interview types for the members to experience, and then at the end of the event, they got to keep their evaluation folder so that they could look over the comments the interviewers had made about them. It was a very professional and successful event — and its conception stemmed from Nightmaren’s desire to draw sanics. To truly appreciate the masterpiece that is the SANIC event, read Nightmaren’s post: Life in the F4s L4n3!1 I never expected be an accomplice to one of their trolls; I guess it’s just a testament to their charisma that I enjoyed and am prideful of having helped create an event centered around something that has haunted me ever since I became friends with Nightmaren.
It wasn’t until my first year of grad school — when I was vice president of Molding Doctors — that I could truly appreciate how good of a leader Nightmaren is. By comparing him to Nightmaren, I was able to better identify exactly what it was that made Nightmaren a good leader. I had three full paragraphs about how fail this president was, but this post is supposed to be about Nightmaren, so let’s just leave it at that. Just know that my experience with last year’s president was so frustrating that I just lost all interest in the organization, even though Nightmaren’s younger brother is the president this year (and was secretary last year).
Now, as a result of being friends of Nightmaren and working with them closely through Molding Doctors, I have been subjected to a daily dose of trolling pretty much since the day I first started getting to know them. Thanks to that, I’ve become a bit more tolerant of herpness, as well as (slightly) more likely to partake in any herp activities going on within my vicinity. I suppose I also have to thank Balance for the same reason (though to a lesser extent), since they have aided Nightmaren in administering additional amounts of herp. Many of the webcomics I now follow were discovered by Nightmaren linking me to a particularly herp one. Some examples include: exocomics, GamerCat, and Twogag.
Honestly, Nightmaren’s aptitude for herp goes beyond what I could ever convey through words. It’s something that has to be experienced (ideally firsthand) to be truly understood. And while I’m sure I’ve left out quite a few things I’ve gained from my friendship with them, herp makes up about 95% of our interactions, so it’s a bit difficult to remember what else there is beyond it.
Also, I lied. There will probably be 2 more posts in this series. I hope only 2 more posts.