I noticed that during my experience in paintball most girls (my apologies to those who actually know how to shoot a gun) act somewhat differently than boys. So I would like to offer some advice for girls on how to respectfully play paintball so as not to be mocked or laughed at by the opposite sex.
Regularly wipe your mask. The mask will become foggy as you play, blocking your view of your opponent and thus making any tree appear to be someone on the opposite team. Look carefully to see if it is in fact an enemy or simply a tree. If you continually shoot the tree and yell at it, and it does not move, and others have begun laughing at you, you should probably clean your mask.
But for God’s sake, do NOT take the mask off while on the field! This will result in you sporting an eye patch where your eyeball used to be.
Make sure you speak the language of the people you are playing with. If you do not, you may find that you are still shooting at the tree you mistook for the enemy, while everybody is yelling at you “The game is over!”
Also, “Cover me!” is different than, “It’s over!” It’s important to be able to tell the difference between the two. If you misunderstand “cover me” for “game over,” you could be the idiot charging toward the opposite end of the field stumbling on paintball guns because of your foggy mask.
Getting shot hurts. Like hell. Don’t cry and complain. That is bad and you will never be allowed to play again.
Advance, advance, advance. Do not hide in the back where you started from because:
a) That’s where guys from the opposite team go first because they know that all girls hide in the back.
b) You will not hear that “The game is over!” yell from so far in the back.
c) Every tree from that far back looks like a person, you must advance in order to shoot a REAL person.
d) You will get dirty. Do not wear nice clothes. Wear something you don’t care about, like your boyfriend’s clothes.
Well ladies, I wish you luck on your endeavors. If you follow these tips, you will surely come out as the man with the least bruises.
Lisa Magedler is a junior majoring in creative writing. She is still recovering after embarrassing herself in paintball and may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.