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Features@kaleo.org | Alvin Park Editor |Maria Kanai Associate

Page 7 | Ka Leo | Wednesday, Dec. 7 2011

Features CHASEN DAVIS/KA LEO O HAWAI‘I

2011

Manoa Experience

S C A N F O R F U L L S T O RY

I HAD TO MAKE A DECISION. IT WAS KIND OF LIKE THE SCENE IN THE MATRIX WHERE NEO MUST DECIDE WHETHER OR NOT HE WANTS TO LEAD HIS NORMAL LIFE OR LEARN THE TRUTH ... SHOULD I TAKE THE BLUE PILL AND HAVE A NORMAL DAY? OR SHOULD I TAKE THE RED PILL AND GO ON THIS CRAZY ADVENTURE? THE ANSWER WAS SIMPLE. chance to win anything,â€? he said. “I thought my entry was kinda ‘meh’ compared to all my other classmates’ entries. When I received the call that I was a winner, I just laughed.â€? The story is humorous, but Rayo still thinks it says something important about life at the University of Hawai‘i at MÄ noa. “My story is based off an experience where I was hesitant about going, but eventually gave in and

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Virgel Rayo: Runner-up

Virgel Rayo, one of the runners-up of the MÄ noa Experience Arts Competition, wasn’t exactly inspired to enter. “Believe it or not, I was kind of forced into submitting an entry by my creative writing teacher,â€? said Rayo in an email interview. “It was actually a midterm for that class, and every student had to submit theirs into the contest.â€? Rayo’s submission was a short story chronicling a day’s experiences (complete with trafďŹ c, skipping class to have an adventure, and zombie ninjas), illustrated in the margins with stick ďŹ gures demonstrating and commenting on the narrative. Rayo described his entry as “one of the many crazy stories I have – in the form of a grammatically inaccurate short story, complete with poorly drawn stick-ďŹ gures.â€? Regardless of technical skill, the stick ďŹ gures bring the story to life and add humor. Rayo initially wrote the story alone, but felt it was incomplete. He began casually doodling on the original, and was so inspired that he started a new version that incorporated his drawings. “I felt like the reader wasn’t just reading my story, but we (the stick ďŹ gure version of my friends and I) were telling the story to you. We’d make sly comments about the stupid things we did, as well as poke fun at each other,â€? said Rayo. “It’s like how you would hear a story from a friend, except in story and art form, which I thought was pretty cool.â€? Even after adding illustrations to his story, Rayo didn’t expect his entry to make the cut. “Honestly, I thought I had no

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had a great time,â€? said Rayo. “I guess what I’m trying to say is that you shouldn’t be so hesitant about these sort of things. “In my opinion, a huge part of the MÄ noa Experience is interaction with other students, so you might as well meet new people. Who knows – you might make a new friend or deepen old friendships, [which] ultimately provide a huge pillar of support in your college life.â€?

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