Editor’s note: Because the first cardinal rule of college and life is “snitches get stitches,” all student sources will remain anonymous.

Underage college students looking to get “Wildcat Wasted” are faced with a timeless challenge: how to acquire alcohol. One of the most popular routes is by getting a fake ID. The cinematic masterpiece “Superbad” not only teaches us that fake IDs can be the ticket to ultimate party coolness, but also that they are accompanied by unique challenges and inevitable mishaps. This wisdom holds true at Northwestern.

According to Northwestern students, step one of fake ID acquisition is to consult the fake ID gods, or more accurately, IDGod.org. Students daring to dip their toes into the black market of fake IDs will find that IDGod imposters are rampant, trying to capitalize on their underage drinking monopoly. Idgod.ph, idgod.to, idgod.com and id-god.ph are all sites claiming to be the “OFFICIAL IDGOD.”

These sites are barely navigable and largely indistinguishable from each other, making scamming teenagers all too easy. This is not to mention their questionable reliability. An anonymous source going by the pseudonym “Cuervo” shared that their ID was confiscated by U.S. customs, costing a steep $90 sacrifice and anxiety over the possibility that the feds might send a strongly-worded letter to their parents.

Another source, nicknamed Svedka, found success with IDGod’s shipping and handling services. Svedka received the standard set of two IDs “sent in a pair of oven mitts,” carefully hidden under the innocent and believable guise of a first-year with a passion for baking.

Having overcome the preliminary ID obstacles, underage Wildcats yearning for the sweet effervescence of a White Claw face a new trial: using their fake ID. Some patrons begin their underage drinking career fearlessly, like anonymous source “Tito,” who recalls feeling “like a total badass walking out” of the liquor store the very first time.

Others confess intimidation. Anonymous source Cuervo felt “terrified, like the hand-shaking type of shit” visiting that first liquor store. Nerves are an underage drinker’s krypronite, a fact corroborated by a source at Austin Liquors in Skokie, where the source says fakes are “very easy to spot,” much like their underage holders.

Establishments like Austin Liquors take advantage of key details that fake ID holders often miss. The source says, “You can ask them their date of birth and half don’t know it,” or “if they’re from out of town …what their area code is.” Other deceptive questions might include what your zodiac sign is, or which major highways run through your state of choice. Clearly, nerves of steel can only get you so far unless you’ve memorized your fake birth chart and some Ohio trivia. Ultimately, the source concluded, it “doesn’t matter, even if they’ve got the ID. If you don’t look 21, I’m not gonna serve you.” So good luck, baby-faced Wildcats — those youthful looks may just be your downfall.

The real make-or-break for fake ID users is confidence. Anonymous source Tito managed to keep their fake even as friends lost theirs by ad-libbing, “Don’t worry officer, they’re with me” and bungling the name of an Alabama college they claimed to attend. So keep your improv skills at the ready. Who knows, that theater degree may yet prove useful!

The rush of high-stakes improv isn’t universally enticing, as the consequences of failed routines are severe. Most establishments take the route of confiscating the ID and kicking the attempted customer out. Austin Liquors even goes a step further, saying, “the easiest way to handle it is to call the police.” So to avoid an altercation with the cops, hand over that fake and take your place on the wall of shame.

Even successful fake ID adventures eventually yield an inevitable question. Anonymous source Svedka explains, “When I actually turn 21, should I keep using my fake at places I usually go, or should I throw ‘em for a loop and just swap out for my real ID?” Well, valued drinker, you’ve been throwing the legal system for a loop for years, and your successors will do the same. But proceed with caution, young Wildcats. The ultimate authority of alcohol.edu, the student handbook and Evanston local alcohol laws still have you by the legal balls for at least a couple more years.