Animal Communication with Sonic Again
By Hector Medina and Chinchilla(s)

Started on: 06/04/13 11:28:46
Medium: Conceptual

This weekend some friends and I decided to adventure out and visit Santa Barbara’s zoo. It was pretty small but it had awesome animals. I loved how you can experience feeding a giraffe. It seems to be one of the main attractions at the zoo. Other than that it was nice to see the variety of animals there. I don’t think I collaborated with any of the animals since we couldn’t actually interact with them. There was a moment when we sang with the Gibbon apes. Well maybe imitating their noises and they responded. Overall the zoo gave me a fresh start, I thought there has to be an animal out there that can teach me something.
After thinking about it, I thought I would go back to Sonic and see if he would be more comfortable this week and would want to communicate. Unfortunately Hope was not here this weekend but she gave me permission to go ahead and collaborate with him. Her roommate Elizabeth, Shelby’s owner let me in. We made sure all the doors were locked, ensuing that Sonic wouldn’t escape the apartment. We opened the cage and offered him a peanut if he came out and “played.” He did and came up to it and he even put a paw on my finger. I thought this is going to be the day.
He eventually came out and was wondering around the bedroom. He would stop once and a while and looked in my direction. I don’t know if he still thought I was there to harm him or not. I decided to get to his level and lay low on the carpet. Maybe then he wouldn’t find me as intimidating. He seemed to warm up and he came up to me. I gave him more peanuts. I don’t know if that was collaborating, not because I was feeding him, but because I was gaining its trust. Like I said with the giraffe that was just feeding, here it was something else. He eventually even bounced up onto my knees. I thought this encounter might be the one.
I still couldn’t think of anything we can collaborate and make. Maybe dip his feet in paint and have him make a painting with me. Or maybe he would be the motivation for people to try my maze idea. I thought the painting idea might not work out since chinchillas do not like getting wet; well it’s more of harm than preference.
Then as I tried to get him back to place him back into his enclosure, I remember to hold him close to my heart. That calms him down, when he reads my heart patter and realizes there’s no danger. It got me thinking, maybe this can be my project. This is his way of communicating with us, thought physical interactions. We as humans have to open up and talk with one another before we care comfortable with them. Sonic simply feels our heart and bases a judgment on that. I need to come up with an art project based on this idea though.

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