On Saturday September 5th 2009, this happened.
Once again proving we are part of the greatest community on the Internet, Dtoiders presented Niero and Colette with a signed mosaic of community members to show appreciation for everything they’ve done for all of us. Being the one who started it, I’ve been asked to write a bit about this gift. What inspired it, what it means to me and what I wanted it to mean for everyone else.
Well, like many good things, this one began with breasts. I went to a charity burlesque show in support of breast cancer research back in the spring. The show itself was very entertaining, not the blatant nudity that some shows are known for, instead constantly teased nudity that you never actually see (none of that pasties bullshit) tied around very good song and dance routines. Where Destructoid ties in to this is during the silent auction the show had. While browsing the items I saw one for a 2 x 3 foot canvas print of a photo of the winner’s choosing. I’m not sure why, but I was instantly reminded of a gesture MadCD did at PAX 2008. He got an oversized piece of cardboard, got as many people as he could to sign it, and presented it to Niero as a souvenir from everyone. I just knew I had to get the print, and do something similar for this year’s PAX.
It took a several months before I figured out what to put on it. I initially just thought of having a simple photoshopped picture of Destructoid. Something that sums it up nicely … maybe about videogames, or a joke about “Also, Cocks.” None of those really fit what I wanted the picture to represent however; never quite conveying in my opinion what Destructoid is all about.
More after the jump.
The answer eventually did come to me though: the community, which is something that I think we can all agree best sums up Destructoid. The amazing people who read the site, post in the forums, write community blogs, play games with each other and have NARPs, along with the amazing individuals who make it all possible. THAT is what makes Destructoid such a special place. It’s why I turned from a lurker to a member two years ago, and continue to come back day after day.
So the answer was clear: scour the tubes to find photos of community members and organize them into a collage, and get every Dtoider at PAX (or at least as many as possible) to sign it. I made a point to get everyone I could think of, and managed to find 450 unique photos. I know I missed a lot of people, and do apologize for everyone that was missed. As far as I’m concerned, however, this gift is from the entire community, regardless of whether or not they are actually in the mosaic or have signed it. It was suggested at one point that I could have used everyone’s avatars, but I wanted actual pictures of community members. In my opinion we’re more than just our avatar, we’re family.
So with a month to go before PAX, I got the picture printed out, and picked up several silver parcel markers for people to sign it with. I didn’t get it framed though, as you can just imagine the difficulty of carrying around something that large versus just rolling it up and putting it in a tube. As PAX drew closer I got more and more worried about it. What would people think? What if something happened to the picture before I got to PAX? Would everyone be cooperative in signing it? What if someone is mad that I didn’t get a picture of them? What if the markers were bullshit and ruined the picture? Lots of things were just eating at me, which wasn’t helped by real life issues that came up right before I left.
Thankfully I had nothing to worry about. On Saturday we had a “Suiterday” event, where whoever wanted to dress up fancy did and we all went to one place to drink and socialize. I took advantage of Niero running late, and slowly herded people into a quiet corner to show it to them and get their signature. Shortly after Niero arrived it was time so we got everyone’s attention and presented it to them. I can’t speak for others, but the look on Niero and Colette’s faces and the enthusiasm everyone showed for the whole thing brought me to tears, and reinforced the fact that this is without a doubt the best place on the internet.
So there you have it. A gift from the community as thanks to Destructoid for being such an amazing place. A gift that started with breasts. <3
PS: For those who are interested, you can download the original source picture used for the print here. Be warned though, it’s a 10796 x 7199 pixel picture (2 x 3 feet, at 300 ppi), and a 26MB download.
And wallpaper versions for all! 1024x768 1200x1024 1280x800 1440x900 1600x1200 1680x1050
(pictures taken from the Dtoid flickr account. Thanks to Kryptinite, bushofghosts, and The GHost)