Draw My Life – Manniac
Hello Hippos! I’m manniac and today I draw my life. My story began many years ago,
somewhere on the edge of a disc. That was at the time when the earth was
still flat, and people lived in villages and brought their youngest sons as
sacrifices to appease grumpy gods. Well, you know village life. These are my parents. And over there
are my two brothers. And that’s me! Okay, that was probably a bit too early .. That’s how I looked nine months later. And even though I was the youngest in my
family, I was lucky and not immediately offered to the Gods. Maybe that’s why
everything was buried under heaps of snow, when my father brought me home from the hospital. In the first few years not much happened –
my parents did the necessary stuff to nurture me and then fled to Italy for 2 weeks.
Of course, just to recover from me Meanwhile I was chilling with my aunt.
Which was actually kind of cool – I still like my aunt. A few years later I was able to come with them to Italy. Me and my two brothers felt as in a sardine can in the trunk of our
green VW Passat on the long drive. Then off we went, shooting over the
edge of the disc and across the Alps, to a place called Garden Paradiso. That was
when I saw the ocean for the first time and I wondered why we didn’t have
something like that at home. We slept in tents on air mattresses –
which was pretty uncomfortable, but we called it “flair”. At the age of 6 I started school – which was
too damn early, and I wasn’t too eager to go there. Before that I also wasn’t very
happy with the Kindergarten’s Catholic staff. Because at the edge of the disc there
weren’t so many primary schools, I had to go by bus evey day, driving across some mountains. An incredibly annoying issue – especially in winter when the bus would almost fall off
the edge of the disc a few times. The school was okay … ish. A few of the kids were
nice, and with others I didn’t get along very well. I least liked sports, where heavy balls
regularly smashed my face I was otherwise not too bad in sports .. At jump-roping and badminton I was super!
But in team games I was really bad. From the second class on I was always
the last to be chosen in a team. In school, I soon become know as the goofy guy, but I learned quickly and brought creative ideas into class But, there also were some ideas they did not like like the one time when I brought
our new cat to school in the backpack. I think the cat didn’t like it either. With the village children, I was only
moderately getting along, and the relationship didn’t not really improve when I got
to high school in another town. At least I had a little less
to do with them from there on. In the new school, I got to know
a whole lot of new people, and exciting subjects, such as English and Biology while others, such as math and sports, I could have done without. Two years later,
I also had to learn Latin. Which I didn’t want to learn –
I prefered French! But my parents found Latin much more useful. A dead language. A rarely stupid idea.
Thank you, dear Parents! In high school I wasn’t a good student,
and in the 8th class my grades quickly went downhill.
On one hand, my teachers said that I was smart enough to get the material. The problem
was rather that if I wasn’t genuinely interested in something, I also didn’t want
to learn it, and therefore I simply did not. At the end of 8th class, I had to repeat the year. The following years were my personal hell. The second 8th class consisted of 80% absolute
assholes, and the rest were followers: famously cunning, arrogant wankers, whose goal was simply to
wear each other down and everybody else around. Me, the new guy, was the main target.
Thus, they gave me mean nick names, began to mimic me, shouted at me and even threatened to beat me up.
Sometimes they didn’t just threaten me, but beat me up for real. That was the time when I had
really wished myself far far away. My parents suggested I should drop out of school,
because my grade were still not much better, and start a job, but I didn’t want that.
School was bad enough, and now starting my adult life? ARE YOU MAD?
I keept on going my way, and tried to keep my learning aversion
in check – also because I then found a few things that I actually liked about this school: The student newspaper, for example, which
I saved together with friends from being cancelled. When I started, it was a poorly photocopied
16-pages black and white sheet, but with our commitment we made a
250-page magazine with a full-color cover and for that we even won a couple of awards. Or the theater group, in which I dressed
as a poodle for the role of “Newton” in Friedrich Dürrenmatts “The physicists”. Or later, when I fell in love with
an exchange student from Sweden. Well, you can imagine that my classmates were baffled when they realized that they were right
all these years when they called me a faggot and a homo. The good thing
for me was, that after my coming out they couldn’t enjoy that fact very much,
because to the girls I now was the winner of hearts (unlike the other boys!),
and it also makes it less fun to insult someone as “faggot!” if he just smiles and says: “Yeah …? You’re right.” With my first love, unfortunately
I had no luck – the boy went back to Sweden, and with him my dreams
of a life with mooses and Köttbullar. And with my second great love, it also went
differently than planned: He got together with my best friend, who I complained
to about all my heartache months earlier. Eventually all wounds were healing,
and while I finished my final exams, I got to know new friends from
outside school: a crazy Swiss, and an almost as crazy German,
and with them and my little car I probably had the best time of my youth life. Till the farewell came and my life
took a whole new twist. Directly after graduation I skipped –
thanks to my 2 older brothers – the civil service, left all my friends behind and moved away
from my village to the sleepy town of Karlsruhe. Actually I wanted to study graphic design,
but the university said: NOPE! and so at the last moment I applied for an entirely different subject:
computer science! I thought: Hey, I’m good with computers – why not try this? Oh man, was I wrong. But what was really cool were the many
new friends and the whole new life that started for me. I had my own room in a student dormitory no one who dropped in without knocking,
roaring “CLEAN UP YOUR ROOM!”, and finally the full freedom to buy me my own toilet paper! Namely the fluffy 4-ply from Edeka,
not the cheap 2-ply from Aldi. For a time my life seemed perfect:
I didn’t have much money, but otherwise almost everything I could possibly want:
friends, a life between party and university, fast internet, great toilet paper and a few
weeks after I moved finally a real relationship with a guy,
that couldn’t have been better! Yet… as quickly as it started, my fortunate didn’t
last very long: the relationship broke suddenly, before it had really begun –
and although all the other great things stayed, it was for me as if
someone had turned off the lights. It took me a few years before I recovered from this. But life went on, of course – I met new
friends in real life and on the Internet. For example, a big bear with a diploma in Physics,
or a fluffy Wombat, who soon became my best friend. I went to discos and bars, and eventually I realized that computer
science was not for me. What initially appeared to be the ideal subject, was much
more difficult and too maths-dependend than I first assumed. I cancelled my studies, and to relieve my
parents from the burden of paying for everything, I quickly got my first real job: I started
my own business as a Website Creator for large companies such as BASF and WEB.DE
and many small and large corporations. The best thing was: It was more than just work,
but also my hobby, and thanks to this hobby I finally earned real money. These were
exciting times, with many nights when me and my colleagues sat in the office,
munching pizza and enjoying life. As I worked, I learned, and while I learned
I earned money, and with that money I bought my first camera equipment
and other things that helped me in turn, to work even better. In addition,
I was now able to afford things, I had previously only dreamed of:
To travel, with a wombat in my bag, to the U.S. and across the whole world.
Once, when I was gone for a particularly stressful week, my boss surprised me
with a raise, if in the future I promised to travel a little less – so much had he missed me! During that time, my mother became seriously ill
– something that kept quiet for many years and now came back in a fierce battle: Cancer. These were bitter months – for her, for me,
my brothers, my aunt and my father. And the saddest Christmas I’ve ever had. In January 2003, my mother died. Not long after I took a break and
flew to the UK to travel about the country, on my own – just following my nose.
I visited London, Bristol, Manchester, Liverpool, Edinburgh and finally Glasgow –
and made up my plans where to go next, every single day. Hooked from the Road Trip I started
a year later on the next trip: First, I flew to Tokyo and then continued
to Middle Earth, travelling for two months: Up and down the North and South Island. For me,
New Zealand is the most beautiful country in the world, and if I’m going to get old, I want to get old there. Along with a few sheep, a nice tidy kiwi
and loads of internet. Back in Germany, daily routine quickly
started again, and I found that it was too early to commit myself
to a routine job until the day I die. I applied for the study of Media Arts … and was rejected. I insisted on a year’s probation and sticked
to my plan to apply again the next year. In the end I was accepted. So from now on, I studied arts – more
specifically media arts: photography at the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design – and I even
continued when I moved to Berlin by the end of 2006 I did my undergraduate degree with an A, with “The fair sex” – a series of
photo montages of people, in whose faces I had mounted genitals. Yes.
Have fun with this picture in your head! But after 3 years of studies
I still wasn’t happy – my University with principal Peter Sloterdijk had a philosophical
trait, and even though I was interested in this, my wish to sometimes entertain people with comedy
instead of profoundly concerned German arts, could not be met.
(Titles: “The stone, your friend”, “Gray Silence”, “Everything is awful”) I finished the undergraduate degree –
to make space for other plans. While social media conquered the web and
I struggled for recognition in the blogosphere, something new and exciting started in the USA: YouTube.
I followed the first Youtube stars like Smosh, TheWineKone or Daxflame, almost from
the beginning – but in Germany the site was rather perceived as an archive
for funny TV clips and music videos. Quickly I made my first video, but there
was hardly any community to enjoy it, and so I was happy about 20, 50 or 100 viewers.
Also, although I was pretty experienced as a photographer, I knew nothing about making videos! That changed when in late 2007 I plunged into
the next great adventure of my life: Australia. I have long wanted to travel
around the country – not as a tourist for a few weeks. I wanted to experience
it properly for a whole year, and document every step. In December 2007, I liquidated
my apartment, stuffed my belongings into a storage building at the outskirts of Berlin,
got into the plane and took off. At first I made a stopover in Thailand,
where I moved three weeks from North to South and nourished only by air and coconuts. On Christmas eve, I finally flew to Australia, Sydney, where I stayed a few weeks and got myself a temporary
new best friend: My car Charlie. Charlie was a silver gray station waggon, a Ford Falcon,
with 280,000 kilometers on the speedometer, and my faithful companion. During the days we
drove through the outback of the red continent and at nights we slept at the side
of the roads, me in his trunk. We had so many adventures, fought minor
and major break-downs as Charlie was broken up and half of my equipment
was stolen from his trunk. He was only a car, but we were a team
and I cried tears when in fall 2008 I had to leave. Australia was the
second great journey of my life, and one day I’ll be back. The return to Germany was a mix of emotions.
I had missed Berlin more, than I had admitted it on the way,
but now that I was back, I even missed Australia and the freedom so much more. At the same time I was struggling with
the aftermath of my long break. Since I had financed the journey with debts and barly took
any jobs while on the road, I wasn’t really able live it up any more. I paid back
the money for nearly 3 years, until I finally was free again in 2011. Meanwhile my YouTube channel started
to grow faster – I certainly learned how to make videos in Australia, and my
3-minute clip of my trip Down Under spread rapidly. My audience, which I affectionately
called after Kinder Happy Hippos, quickly rose over 100,000 hippos and turned my life completely upside down. Also, when I returned, I immediately found
a new job – this time together with my best friend, the wombat, at the movie community
MoviePilot, which led to some exciting encounters with Hollywood – I met many
celebrities, visited the U.S. Studios of Disney and Pixar several times,
interviewed the Muppets and Jason Segel and was shown around by Tim Burton personally
on the set of his animated feature “Frankenweenie” There were even more dreams, that became real,
like my journey through Jordan and my exploration of the nuclear wastelands of Chernobyl. And my hippos were always there with me –
whether on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook or tumblr – they accompany me and are a
fantastic, creative community and also the best thing, that happened to me in the last 4 years. When I look back on the many ups and downs, I think:
Even if everything seems to come to a halt it will still somehow go on – and most of the time it will get much better than you would have imagined.
When my classmates made my life a living hell or when my first relationship failed,
or my mother died, I never thought that I could get out of this dark hole
and achieve all the great things that came later: Australia, my travels,
YouTube and all my friends. This shows that nothing is more important
than to believe in yourself and your future. No matter how confusing life sometimes may seem,
you have it in your hand. It’s always getting better because the future is the best thing you’ve got! I hope you liked my DRAW MY LIFE!
If so, I’m happy for a thumbs up! You can also tell me in the comments,
what is the most important thing for you? Has YouTube changed your life, too,
and if so, how? If you want to see more cartoons and videos
from me, you should subscribe to this channel and here you can watch how other
YouTubers have drawed their lives, like ApeCrime and ChrizTezz.
More of my cartoons are here in the playlist – and we’ll see us again next time! Bye!