Legend? Icon? Really?
So I waited a few days, but the emails and IM's have been flowing back and forth. Now I am not trying to besmirch the life of Danijel Jagodic aka BORG or the sad fact that he decided to end it. I have been at the end of the suicide solution and it really solves nothing for anyone but the person who chose to do it. It is as many people have said the cowardly way out of problems. And I understand people's grief and that in their grief they tend to remember nothing but the good times. I mean what person would show up at a funeral and talk about all the dick things someone had done (Ok maybe at my funeral but that is another story). However, some people took it over the top. I mean really, you would have thought the man who invented paintball had died. Oh yeah. that's right the man who did and is fighting cancer didn't get the kind of treatment that Borg did. And what did Borg do? He made Youtube videos in Croatia.
Yeah they were funny, and yeah they were informative and yeah some people felt a connection. But what did he really bring to the game? What changes were made? What innovations brought to the table? I mean he played two scenario games in the US, and both of those were gratis of a community that he did videos for. Ok, maybe the goodwill from that extended to his status or maybe some people just didn't want to feel gipped by their contributions. The community had been collecting money just to help pay his bills. That isn't even paintball and it still wasn't enough to keep him around. They played his thank you video and how he thanked everyone for all that they had done, but then why didn't he truly thank people and take their investment in him and use it to help himself. I just don't follow the train of thought. I have been depressed (divorce, loss of mother and a brother in 3 years time) and I have depression in my family. My son is diagnosed with depression and my brother took his own life, a little over a year ago. So forgive me for not jumping on the oh what a 'Legend' and that is what has me more at a loss.
I am not angry because so many people don't consider me one, but I am pretty miffed that one of the true legends, Glenn Palmer, got 1/10th of the credit he deserved or concern over his accident that Borg got. So many people have no idea who Glenn Palmer is. I mean that guy is a legend. Tom Kaye is legend. Wayne Dollack is a legend. Hell even though I cannot stand them, people like Diane 'Mother' Howe and Kerry 'Viper" Rosenberry are legends. Even though he is disgraced in the sport, Patrick 'Packman' McKinnon was a legend. Spiro 'Black Cat' Mamligas was a legend. And hell there are quite a few more. But to just scream that because someone was up on a stage at a Living Legends event that they are legend, besmirches all those people who are true legends. I was brought up on stage with all the legends that was at LL 1. And you know, I knew I wasn't one and I was humbled to be up there with them. I was up just because I was the XO. And while those people close to Borg may feel better with all this out pouring, the sad fact is that they know he wasn't a legend. In the end, he will be known as the youtube guy, who hung himself.
Now I am sure that pisses a lot of you off, and you have that right. But I have a right to right your sense of what the hell a LEGEND and a ICON. See there are others who are those as players, Chris Lasoya, Ollie Lang, Rocky Cagnoni, Mike 'Blue' Hanse, Greg 'Red' Hastings to name a few. Others as magazine ICONS, Jessica Sparks, Josh Silverman, John Amodea. Even more as other media, Dale 'Furby' Ford and Wayne (from Blast Radius). And then you have the industry people, the guys from Planet Eclipse and JT and Tippmann and Kee. Simon, the man who behind Tom Kaye is one of the foremost inventors of paintball equipment out there. I mean these people are ICONS and LEGENDS. I don't even consider him a legend but at one time I guess you could consider Ed Rieker and ICON, and well Mike Phillips has built enough momentum to probably inherit that status as well. But really look up the definitions of those words and then look at the kids on Tech PB who posted it. It just doesn't match up. And of course, the fan boys ran all over every forum and posted that Borg was dead. The simple statement that so many put back of "Borg who?" should have told them all that they needed to know. Don't believe me? Go look at all the other forums about the Glenn Palmer accident and the amount of people who knew about that and their reactions. That should tell you all that you need to know about a LEGEND or an ICON. He was very well known on Tech PB, that is to be assumed. He was one of Mike's favorite people and pushed by him and his admins as a good dude. I assure that a lot of the momentum that Borg saw came from riding on Mike's coat-tails. Maybe Mike should have cut him on Markerbids, who knows.
In the end, it doesn't much matter. I just felt like someone had to be the voice of reason. Someone had to stop the revisionist historians who were putting Borg on some kind of pedestal instead a realizing that while celebrating how the man lived, they have to acknowledge that in the end he was a murderer. He 'KILLED' himself. Now that may not matter to a lot of people, but your impressionable youth need to keep that in consideration. Every damn little video or blurb or post by 'responsible' adults should include a link to a crisis hotline, or a phone number or a disclaimer that suicide should never be an option. I haven't seen that. All I have seen is the canonization of someone who might have deserved had he not wrapped something around his neck and ended his life. But that is just me, I guess.
As someone sent me an email it appears that I didn't follow my own advice so here it is. If you are depressed or feel like you might hurt yourself there are places to get help. Nothing in this life is insurmountable and nothing in this life is unique, someone somewhere has had the same shitty thing happen to them or possibly even worse. That is why they are there to help you provide a stopgap until you can get clinical help. Suicide is never really the answer for the living that you leave behind. If you go to the 'dark place' then pick up the phone and give these people a call, they can help.
The real irony of the word "legend" to begin with, at least to me... is that it conjures up "legends of wrestling", a bunch of broken old men with no modern relevance that are just a footnotes. Go watch "The Wrestler" if you don't get what I'm saying.
and... Is Palmer a legend? Really? Why? Because he made parts and a re-arranged autococker with a non-removable barrel? Because PPS ran a Counter-Strike server?
Well, first off, the last time that guy did something interesting, I was in high school and you didn't play scenarios. Most people now wouldn't even know what it is if they saw it in person. Second, I owned a Palmer. It broke 2 hours into the first 2 events I attempted with it and was handed to Chronos for an electro-conversion (allegedly it's still on his wall). Third, I did speak to Glenn on a few occasions, and on all of them, he was a dickhead, and most recently, an apologist and excuse maker for the rapist.
I'm sorry, but how does creating and selling a product make you a "legend"? If that's really the case, why don't I know the name of the guy who invited my E-Vents? Possibly the best goggles ever designed and hugely popular.
How is it not obvious why somebody with Youtube fame would get more outpouring & concern, on the Internet, than a guy with a bad personality, obsolete product line, no real current contributions to the way many people now play or even the gear they use.
I do see one point though... at least I've heard of Palmer.... never heard of this Borg person... but maybe that just means my age is starting to show?
As for Legend and Icon, let's look at what they mean:
Legend: a person or thing that inspires legends (that would be Glenn and his works since it led to the Autococker and the popularity of pistols (Squall and a few others)
Icon: a person regarded as a sex symbol or as a symbol of a belief or cultural movement (and again that would match the fact that before Glenn invented the auto-cocking mechanism, except for some other marker technologies, there wasn't a effective way to mass produce semi-auto paintball markers of a mechanical variety and it was too expensive for electronics at the time. So not the sex symbol part but the mechanical semi-auto movement that is still alive and well today in some old school circles and he strengthened the pump market which is still very much still kicking).
Regardless of his demeanor, his defense of his friends or hell even his politics, you have to hand it to the man that he contributed to the sport in a big way. In fact everyone I mentioned above did. Borg did not, sorry his youtube channel was not even as popular as Tygers and well that is saying something.
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