A legacy is coming to an end. Green Cloak Guy also known as Cape Guy is hanging up his cloak in exchange for a graduation gown to graduate in December. He has been wearing the cloak since he applied to NC State and has left a lasting impression on the campus.
Louis Jacobowitz, a fourth-year studying computer science and psychology, used the cloak as a mechanism to make himself visible and stand out around campus.
“Mostly it was just a different way of making myself stand out because that was a problem in high school,” Jacobowitz said. “I didn’t really have enough of an identity. The way I tried to handle that in high school was just to wear the same shirt every day. Not only is that not really effective because people don’t really notice, it’s also kind of creepy when people do notice. Something that I realized is that accessories work a lot better.”
Jacobowitz believes the cloak has opened his eyes to how people interact on campus and broadened his idea of how to act in the future.
“There’s a principle in psychology, the spotlight effect, that you always feel like people are looking at you more than they actually are,” Jacobowitz said. “When you start going out in a really conspicuous accessory and realize people are actually looking at you, then it suddenly becomes something else and you see the flipside of that because you’re expecting to be noticed, you realize how many people aren’t paying attention and that also affects how you act and drive your own behavior in the future.”
Jacobowitz is hoping to pass his cloak down to a successor in order to allow another student to experience the same learning process as him.
“Experience is the best teacher and the best way to get over a lack of confidence is to artificially give yourself confidence,” Jacobowitz said. “There’s that old saying about becoming the mask. If you pretend for long enough then that becomes you and that’s another aspect that the cape really helps with because by putting it on, you’re pretending to be someone greater than yourself, I guess, and over time you become the person you’re pretending to be. The cape is just a visual aid in that respect.”
Jacobowitz has received around 30 responses to a post on his website for volunteers to be the recipient of the cloak.
“I’m really, really surprised that I got that much,” Jacobowitz said. “I was thinking to myself as I put it up that 10 would be a lot to hope for. I’ve spent most of my day going through them and thinking what does this person have to gain from this and what kind of benefit would I get and what would they get and where could I put this to do the most good.”
Jacobowitz said his successor can do what they will with the cape, but he hopes that they can gain something from the experience and that is why he is looking for an underclassman.
“Honestly, as soon as it’s out of my hands I’m figuring it’s out of my hands is the approach I’m taking,” Jacobowitz said. “In terms of what they get from it, I just want someone else to get to the point that I’m at which is done more through interacting with the world.”
Jacobowitz gave some advice to students who also want to make a statement or be noticed.
“Just try,” Jacobowitz said. “If you’re on the fence, just try. What’s the worst that could happen? People remember you for your successes, not your failures.”