CHICAGO — A disturbing trend is on the rise across Chicago; paintball attacks have sent nearly a dozen people to the hospital.
Last month, two men were shot with paintballs while walking along Michigan Avenue, across from Grant Park. Police said someone fired from a white sedan then drove off.
A University of Chicago doctor said she treated several paintball victims over the weekend.
“Over the last 48 hours, there have been at least seven vision-threatening injuries to the eye and quite a few of them required urgent surgery,” Dr. Ema Avdagic said. She said she’s never seen so many paintball attacks in such a short period of time.
To me there's always been two kinds of paintballing. One is casual. Maybe it's a team building exercise or an aggressive birthday party idea for your one buddy that's into weird stuff. You go reluctantly, borrowing every single piece of equipment including the mask which needs to constantly be wiped and de-fogged. The instructor yells at you KEEP YOUR MASK ON but you can't see so you rationalize it's a bigger risk to have a foggy mask than no mask at all. Brilliant move from a guy who hasn't been paintballing in 8 years, but I digress. This is our first category and it's for normal dudes.
Then there's the kids that got cut from the junior high basketball team and can't throw a baseball. The anti-mainstream sport crowd that lacked the balance and bone strength to make it on skates much less a skateboard. Such outsiders they don't even participate in Parachute Day.
Those are the guys that special order the automatic uzi-looking paintball gun with the custom face mask that doesn't fog. The guys who look like Master Chief from Halo coming out of the DMZ circa 1968. The diehards with the jerseys and monthly magazine subscriptions to Paintball Faithful. That's the second grouping of paintballing and I want to point out that there's no middle ground in the two groups. You've either done it sparingly (if ever) or you're driving to Des Moines this weekend for Regionals. It's that simple to me.
That said, and regardless of which paintball group you're in, getting drilled absolutely blows. Especially if you don't see it coming and you bruise easily. Or even worse, you don't see it coming because you got shot in your fucking eye.
And who would see it coming? Paintballing in Chicago? Keep that shit south of I-80 where it belongs.