Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Slenderwalking All 'Round the World

I seem to be growing into the habit of starting these posts by mentioning some weird Slender Man related occurrence which happened to me at some previously. This post will be no different.
Some of you may recall me mentioning in my Marble Hornets post how at night, I confused two black signs and a white sign for Slender Man, causing a minor freak out. I walked by the place where I saw that on Thursday, during the daytime, and noticed something. There were two black signs, but there was no white sign.
If I may be allowed to express my feelings through the use of understatement, I was somewhat unnerved by this revelation. However, my initial freak out about seeing Slender Man in the signs was at a time when the Mythos was screwing with my head the most, and I was seeing Slendy in everything.

I also want to mention that this blog has been linked to on TVTropes. Which means that one of my life goals has been accomplished. I will have no regrets when Slender Man inevitably comes and kills me.
I was also linked to on 4chan, which is simultaneously both a badge of the highest honor, and an irredeemable shame.

I’ve finished Da Watcha, and caught up with All Eyes on Me!, The Master Comes, Bright Asylum, A Study in Purple, Jonclub113, Not Alone, Adventures of Eric, Believe What You See, and Make It Count. This is all the ARGs/stories I know of; if anyone has any others which I’ve missed, feel free to share them.


Slender Man’s favored mode of transportation, when he isn’t walking around with that slow gait of his, is something akin to teleportation, which I call Slenderwalking (because making a new word by combining two other words makes my inner German happy). This is the ability Slender Man displays to appear seemingly anywhere, and then vanish from that place at will. I can scarcely imagine how much he must save on airfare when traveling cross country.

M’s Rules

As with many of Slender Man’s features, M was the one who first established a set of guidelines defining Slenderwalking. This is how the ability is portrayed in the majority of ARGs and stories, with the occasional minor deviation.
Following M’s rules, Slender Man is capable of appearing or disappearing to/from any point in space, so long as he is not being observed. He’s like a horrifically frightening Schrodinger’s Cat; he potentially exists at every point in spacetime, until he is observed, giving him a fixed position. You could probably throw around a lot of phrases including the word “quantum” if you wanted to, but I’m trying as hard as I can to avoid turning this into an advanced physics paper.
According to M, the reason Slender Man can seemingly teleport is because he is capable of moving freely across spacetime. “He's in a different sort of mathematical reality, so His perception and way of interacting with space and time are different. Basically Slenderman isn't teleporting from room to room, it's all the same to him. Going from 1 town to another is like walking into another room for Him.”

There are some problems with M’s rules, especially how he deals with the possibility of Slender Man time traveling. According to him, it isn’t possible; the people who claim to have been transported to another time are mistaken, likely due to being shook up from Slender Man touching them. However, his theory has Slender Man moving freely through space, which implies capability to move freely through time. In relativistic physics, space and time are not separate. They are a unified concept, called spacetime. Moving through space also means moving through time. I could write even more in depth on this, taking about all sorts of science fun relativity causes (for example, did you know that by moving faster, you are slowing down time? Unless you’re getting close to light speed, it won’t be a noticeable amount. But if you ever want to feel empowered, think about this: whenever you accelerate in your car, YOU ARE MANIPULATING TIME.) but that isn’t the point here. The point is that, whenever Slender Man is following M’s rules (which, unfortunately for us, is most of the time) he can exist at any location or time he wants to. So based on our current understanding of relativistic physics and the workings of spacetime, Slender Man should be fully capable, under M’s rules, to travel freely through time, as well as space.

The inability to Slenderwalk while being observed remains interesting, though. When I mentioned Schrodinger’s Cat earlier, it wasn’t entirely in jest; the idea of something gaining a fixed position due to being observed screams quantum physics. But there’s also a good chance that this weakness is a mental one, not a physical one. By M’s rules, Slender Man can be tricked into not Slenderwalking via using the Operator Symbol, masks, etc. to make him think that he’s being observed. To understand what’s going on there, we’d need to get inside Slendy’s head, which probably isn’t possible for us human brains to do.

So here we’ve got a Slender Man who can appear anywhere and anytime he wants to, only limited by his inability to Slenderwalk while being observed. I suppose if we really wanted to, we could trap him by getting a large enough group of people put him under constant surveillance. Although given how things tend to go down in this Mythos, I doubt that would be as successful as we’d hope.

Jay’s Rules

Jay (R.I.P.) from Anomalous Data had his own theory on how Slenderwalking worked, based on Slender Man’s connection with human belief and emotions. Instead of being able to Slenderwalk anywhere he pleases, Slender Man manifests near people who have belief/fear in him. Following these rules, Slender Man can only appear near people, not anywhere he pleases, and he lacks the ability to travel through time. However, here he has been shown with the ability to appear in multiple places simultaneously, something which hasn’t appeared under M’s rules.

Through experimentation, Jay was able to prove a link between Slender Man’s appearances and human brain activity. Unfortunately, Jay never posted a finalized, all-encompassing theory on the mechanics behind this method of Slender Walking. As Jay has likely been killed by Slender Man, we will probably never see such a post.

This is the most limited method of Slenderwalking which Slender Man has displayed. People who lack strong emotional feelings have a greater immunity against Slender Man manifesting near them, and manifestations can be prevented entirely by erasing a person’s memories of Slender Man.

No Rules

And, of course, sometimes Slendy just does whatever he pleases. This features most commonly in the ARGs whose focus is on the mystery of Slender Man, and as such offer very few explanations for what occurs. Usually, Slender Man’s Slenderwalking abilities will be limitless in such cases. Think M’s Rules, but able to Slenderwalk even while being watched. The first place I encountered this was in Dreams In Darkness, which I initially dismissed it as more of Damien’s insanity. But it would appear again in Scared, which as far as I can tell at the moment, isn’t the hallucinations of a madman, and is a legitimate encounter with Slender Man. There isn’t much more to say on this Slenderwalking method, except that it almost makes Slender Man omnipresent.
However, it may be somewhat of an exaggeration to claim that in these ARGs, there are absolutely no rules governing Slenderwalking at all. There may be no rules which have been revealed in the story. Since the focus in the ARGs using this isn’t on explaining Slender Man, they aren’t going to create a list clearly defining how Slenderwalking works. Instead, he acts in whatever way the plot demands he do so.

Useful Links
M’s Tutorial-It’s not a Tardis: http://getuphigh.blogspot.com/2010/08/its-not-tardis.html
Anomalous Data-First Contact, plus complications: http://anomalousdata.blogspot.com/2010/09/first-contact-plus-complications.html


  1. wow, you're collecting a lot of data, Omega! How interesting that you..and I, are both the ends of the cycle. Omega/Zero, heh. I'll have to do an archive binge to read up on this, perhaps it'll help me think of some other ideas. I think if Robert(Sage) reads about this, he might call you Omega(Scribe) or Omega(archivist)

  2. I've always been partial to the name Omega (Scribe). But Robert's the one who gets to decide what cool names we get, so I'll just leave that up to him.

  3. Special Containment Procedures: Item SCP-173 is to be kept in a locked container at all times. When personnel must enter SCP-173's container, no fewer than 3 may enter at any time and the door is to be relocked behind them. At all times, two persons must maintain direct eye contact with SCP-173 until all personnel have vacated and relocked the container.

  4. Well, this clarifies some stuff. I was playing a game about Slender Man (not knowing how popular he was at the time) and was wondering why he'd always be ahead of me.

    (Link to the game can be found on my blog. http://whatislightwhatisday.blogspot.com/ )