Plastic, Plastic, Plastic. What a hater. Yes I'm still here a$%hole, and yes I will see you and when I do, you too will be remembered.
I decided to put on a little booth with my good friend Todd Martinez and Mike Breto from SD Pevs and Razalife. Along side of me is Brandon Lambertson formerly of Infamous and Ironmen. We are all here trying to support the paintball cause and hope to reach a few of the fans to remember what it was like to have real paintball venues, industry and wealth.
This weekend marked the finals in the NPPL season which looked pretty promising knowing the at the PSP had a great show (if anyone had watched it) and was making an attempt to provide public media exposure of our ever-changing sport to the general public. Sad to say, it was the same ol' same ol'
Ironically we are posted close to Dye and it was a bittersweet feeling that I too had such a booth like theres' at one point in time and now sharing a 20 by 10 booth with great friends. The sweet part was the friend and the stories. Beer, while illegal, helped also in the process in getting through the days ahead.
Weather helped and not helped as the humidity was hard to find and the sun beats down like we were in Crematoria. The Kerns booth next to us had cool drinks and bettys, while we sat in across the bottom field and tried to watch games and sell clothes at the same time.
I was telling passer-buyers, and old friends that we decided to show up in SD since it was close and we figured the public was wanting to know the future of our company in paintball.
"What future is in paintball? or what will be my future in paintball?" That was pretty much my first response to the many that asked that question.
The real question is what is the real future of paintball because if there was one, of course, we would be the quickest to get back in and do what we do. There must be reasons to go back into paintball and one primary one would be the monetary one. Well guess what, no one is making money. #2 The political forces are quieting down and there will be changes. Nope. #3 There is a demand for someone like me to back into paintball. Nope. It seems like that everyone now looks like a derivative of me anyway, funny to say. The new guns, loaders and clothing should be selling right? Wrong.
People forget we are selling to the same people the same stuff year after year. The player that has about 5 jerseys and pants, 3 markers and 8 goggle systems. Now we are trying to sell new "updated" versions of the past in hopes that the buyers "just by."
I walked down the alleys and get stopped and approached every 15 minutes. Yeah, that first day I can say did not get far. As I walked, I saw slashed prices left and right and thought this was like candy in a candy store to me. Then i stopped, hmmm, "there is nothing i really need right now." So, who is all this stuff for? People like me? Or the new blood, the new buyer? If it was me, I would have blasted a NPPL sales flier to the masses for Christmas when i see prices this low. Maybe more of the public would have come in and bought except the worms that try to swindle the sellers for cheaper shit.
We were absolutely busy all weekend and took some time off when we could to watch games, eat and talk pb trash.
Sunday finally comes and we sell, close shop early and watch finals for the first time at the VIP booth. Here we see guys like Nicky Cuba, Maximus, Marcus and a HK goon who calls himself "Bang Anus." This guy eventually got into a fight and got himself kicked out. The place was packed with players and loose women, tourney girl friends and family. So I put myself in a quieter place and wanted to watch some good games and the first game I see is Vicious vs. (I don't know) by this time and beer number 4, I'm getting faded and feeling good.
I attempt to watch and try to listen to the commentators work their magic as they help us follow the match. Unfortunately it was muffled by sounds of generators for the flood lights.
I pan out to see the other side of the field and saw "the other crowd."
This crowd that filled up about 50% of 8 flights of stands or should i say "grand stands." These are people who paid to be in these stands to watch finals and i thought to myself, that actually looked pretty pathetic. you see, we were packed in the VIP booth. These are players that did not make it to sunday and their peeps. The grandstands, well, that is in a nutshell, is OUR PUBLIC. Is paintball in a slump? Certainly not when you think of playing. The industry is smaller because of its structure. The tourneys are smaller because of no media attention. Hence, zero public or lack there of.
Don the tech for Bob Long had come over to tell me of the passing of Tyson from SLY Products. Tyson has been a great friend who I have mentored since the days of ACI. We had long talks of future of paintball, concepts and forecasting on days to come. He will be surely missed and hope for the best to his friends, colleagues and family. He absorbed allot of information through the years and showed great potential. He had a uncorrupted attitude, eager to learn and loved his life. I was told he died in his sleep. Knowing that along side his happy days and fruitful future, that is exactly how anyone would have loved to go out. See you on the other side Tys!
Back to "Am I back in paintball?" I never left, but the other people like to expose that I am. How about future products? Yes, I just have to figure out what the same people who buy my stuff want a lot more of. Which means, I got nothing but time.
Contract Killer was on UFC91 this past Saturday on three fighters on the main card. Nearly 90 million viewers and counting have watched the fight. My partner was on point to watch UFC at the MGM Grand this past Saturday while i played in the sun in sunny San Diego like chicken nuggets under a heat lamp. Fighters on hand that night: Demian Maia, Joe Stevenson and Aaron Riley.
Check the news http://contractkillerclothing.com/
If you purchased this event on Saturday, you won two ways. First, the prefight collective wisdom about UFC 91 was that the card was main event top heavy. In other words, while the fighters who weren't on the main event were certainly capable athletes, the conventional assessment suggested that there was a noticeable lack of celebrity, meaningfulness and intrigue about their bouts. Alas, those contentions were wildly off the mark.
UFC 91 saw title contenders emerge, back-and-forth exchanges, technical mastery, submission and knockout victories and arguably the most high-profile fight in UFC history. Second, while the UFC tries to offer fight fans as much free content as possible, almost monthly PPV events are a toll on anyone's pocketbook, not to mention the noticeable national slump in consumer spending. But fans that purchased this event got to watch every last bit of it: Every single fight was aired for fans' viewing pleasure. While some of this has to do with timing and fast finishes in the night's fights, part of this is also generosity. The UFC is not obligated to use all of their allotted time to showcase their product. They were given extra time and chose to air all nine fights on the card. That's good for the UFC, for the fighters who could use more exposure and for fans who want bang for their buck. Hats off to the UFC for literally giving fans what they paid for: the entire fight card.