Why act like this?

This is an interesting issue that is not solely in Paintball.. but seems to be so much more malicious in our sport. An interesting post about this on the RIOT brought the issue to the forefront of my mind and I can’t help but voice my opinion on the matter.

To give a brief synopsis of the situation I am referencing; on pbRIOT HeDidIt made a post about a young kid, 13 years or so that went out to the field with a brand spanking new Ego 11. He had it, he didn’t brag about it or try to show off and make a fool of himself. He kept to his own (not the most talented paintball player) but he was not once immature, or arrogant about his gear.

Regardless of him handling himself like an adult at 13, many people at the field filled with angst, or envy, or whatever it was that drove them. Took it upon themselves to decimate this kid every chance that they got. I don’t mean just focusing all of their attention on getting him out, but doing things like bonus balling and just making sure that his time at the field was about as miserable as they could possibly make it. Luckily, HeDidIt ended up getting the refs involved (like a true sentinel of paintball, protect the future!) and got these jerks off of his field so everyone could enjoy the rest of their day.

All this, because they felt like this kid did not deserve what he was shooting his paint with.

The paintball player on the left has potential to become the one on the right.

The thing is, not only is the entire premise of that mentality so absurd that it makes me wonder what some people go to even play paintball for, but he in fact did deserve and earn his marker.

This kid was told at the beginning of the school year that if he made Honors for the entire year, he could have whatever he wanted (this turned out to be an Ego 11). At the end of the school year when he made honors, he was successfully upgraded from a 98C to an Ego 11.

So, I look to you, the community. What are your thoughts? What would you do if you saw a situation like this? Have you been a part of something similar? Have you been the bully before and why?

I know that just over 2 years ago I was the guy who came to the field for the first time with all brand new gear and a Geo+ in hand. I was the tool who couldn’t really play but had extremely expensive gear in hand. I was respectful, willing to learn, and went out to have a good time. Luckily no one at Blitz Paintball gave me a hard time, but it bothers me that anyone would do this. Our sport is still growing and we should be helping it grow rather than tearing down those that keep us all balling. We are all in this together, and we should represent ourselves and our sport with the highest respect.

If we don’t take ourselves seriously, who will?

If you are interested, head on over to the discussion on pbRIOT.com and give us all your two cents!

-Trevor

4 thoughts on “Why act like this?

  1. You know, I’ll be honest here. I’ve been tempted to light people up for what they’re carrying. It’s irrational I know, but when I see someone walk into a pro shop, plunk down almost 2k for their kid’s first time out…
    Yeah, the small part of me just wants to grip and rip. But then I catch myself, thinking, “Hey – if you do this now, chances are this kid’ll never come back, and the sport loses a potential ambassador. Not only that, you’re being a twit.”

    And then I think about what happened to me last year. The weather was cruddy, so me and the heavy gunner decide we’re going to go hit an indoor “field” because we wanted to sling some paint (also the day I bought a BT Delta). We walk in decked out in all our milsim regalia, and it’s was like walking into a crowded saloon and have the music stop dead.
    Very frosty reception, indeed. Speedballer Central. First round went…well, poorly. We had every person on the other side laying down paint at us like we had done something to their mothers. We made a decent showing, but we got tagged pretty hardcore.
    2nd round, same thing.
    3rd round, things got personal. One kid had been giving me grief all day, and I’d pretty much just laughed at him each time. Next thing I know, I feel the kind of pain in my chest that made me wonder if I’d actually been shot by a real gun. I look to my left, and there’s this guy not more than ten feet away from me, playing with his marker and an allen wrench. The little tool opened up his marker to as high as it would go, got as close to me as he could, and dropped the hammer on me.
    At this point, I’d had enough. Once I managed to get up off the floor, I went out to the ref and said something. They pulled this guy out and chrono’d his gun. Of course, since he’d adjusted the thing mid-round, he was back under limit. Even with witnesses I was told, “Oh he’s a regular. He comes here all the time and we’ve never had any complaints.”
    Or in other words, “Oh, so sorry. Deal with it.”
    Well, he got his wish. I didn’t go back out. I was still seeing stars, and now I was seeing red.
    In short, we packed up our gear, and bailed. Haven’t been back, and nor will I go back.
    So yeah, I’ve almost been that guy. And I’ve been on the receiving end.
    So HeDidIt did the right thing-and I applaud him for it.

  2. i’d just like to take a minute to thank the regular players at Next paintball in Pickering Ontario a situation came up where two teams show’d up on a sunday evening bent on just tearin each other apart after the third round of insults and threats (keep in mind these where young adults)the older players (old school Red and Tazzmatik) drew the line in the sand either we all play fair or nobody plays. ive never seen such leadership and proper sportsmanship conduct on ANY field before just wanted ppl to know that as a standard Next Paintball is great place to play and thanks guys you made an impact on me and my friends

  3. Even if you don’t go out with gear that people think is “above your level”, most fields I’ve gone to seems to have at least one resident jackass. It’s good to see that people notice these A-holes and actually take action to preserve the experience for the players.
    Few things are as infuriating as catching players acting disgracefully or, and god forbid, wiping a hit and having no way to respond. You can’t quadruple tap them, you can’t beat them within an inch of their life, you can’t follow them home and… well you get the idea. Act responsible and inform the ref and/or field owners. If they’re ineffective or seem to promote the behavior because “That guy’s a regular”, then you leave. That’s probably not the closure we want, but sometimes all we can do is walk away.

  4. Thanks for the write up, stuff like this makes me take a second, slow down and back off from the conclusions I’ve jumped to. Take a second and go ask the kid what the deal is, how many thousand lawns he mowed to afford an Ego at 13, etc.

    Jelousy is good, let it drive you to earn your own awesome toys and skills, don’t let it turn to envy and make you try to crap on everyone else’s toys and fun to bring them back down.

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