I went with the Island King, his brother and our boys today to the paintball field at Hurlburt Field. I wanted to go in with our GoPro camera and get some good video of them. Spectators are allowed on the field and are given a mask and a bright yellow vest. The vest is supposed to let everyone know not to shoot at you and the mask is because you'll probably get shot anyway.
I tried this once before but I was using Troy's work camera and was terrified it would get hit and that not only would I have destroyed the tool he uses to make money with but I'm pretty sure he'd have killed me.
But the GoPro is different. It's made for stuff like this so I wasn't worried about it at all.
Out we went into the woods and the game started. I wanted close up, action video so I took off running with my guys. They all hit the ground at one point and started belly crawling across an open spot.
Because I had on the spectator vest I didn't drop to the ground but then realized that vest or no vest there were paintballs flying all around me and that I was going to get hit if I didn't get on the ground.
So I belly crawled up to where my BIL was hiding behind a bunker and lifted the camera up over the top of the bunker.
I was there to make a video after all so I lifted my head above the bunker to make sure I was getting what I wanted and BLAM a paintball slammed right into my face.
The masks are excellent protection and you don't even feel it when a paintball hits.
What you do feel is the paint that has come through the air vents at the bottom of the mask covering your lips and getting into your mouth.
Did you know that paintballs are made from fish oil?
Do you know how bad a tablespoon of fish oil tastes? It's pretty bad. It also coats your lips so you spit and spit and just when you think the taste is gone you lick your lips and the whole process starts all over again.
My BIL tells me to stand up because the people shooting at us can't see my vest so I'll probably get hit again.
As I was standing up I got hit right on the top of my head.
Which hurt like hell.
I see a ref so I decide to run over and stand by him because it's against the rules to shoot the ref.
That was exactly the same time that he stepped into some crossfire and started getting pummeled with paintballs.
By this time I'm pretty over the whole thing and just want to get off the field.
But when I stand up paintballs are whizzing past me and when I hide people can't see the vest and are shooting at me on purpose.
So I ran, dodging and weaving from one hiding place to another until I finally made it off the field.
It was SO nice to be able to take that mask off and get the fish oil off my lips and out of my mouth.
This isn't working out so well. If I want good video I have to get in really close and if I do a spectator vest isn't going to keep me from getting shot.
I played once with them and getting shot is not a pleasant experience. I don't see the appeal at all but my boys (husband included) wear their paintball bruises like badges of honor.
So we changed plans and mounted the GoPro on the Island King's gun and he got video during each game he played.
I sat and read for a while, visited with the guy who runs the place and enjoyed the sunshine while they continued to play.
He got some pretty good video which I'll put on Youtube when I get it edited.
From now on the Island King is the official combat photographer in our house and I'll stick with photographing sunsets and alligator skeletons.