Life begins at the end of your comfort zone, and mine ends somewhere around paint-ball
Last weekend I made the (totally conscious and sober) decision to go paint-balling with 20 friends, a couple of ex-boyfriends, one ex-boyfriend’s younger brother and some strangers. Anyone who knows me well knows that, while I have negative athletic net-worth, I am (kind of) rich in inner rage (and only kind-of kidding). Hiking aside (not my strong suit), I fucking loved it.
When I wasn’t getting shot in the tit (thanks, August) or gut-laughing in the backseat of a three-hour car-ride as all six of the mix CDs I made for the trip violently skipped (“Call me a safe bet, I’m betting I’m nah-ah-ah”), I was letting my guard down — lightyears away from my comfort zone.
In between spouts of briskly walking for my life, I took to Twitter (because my memory is shot and I have a memoir to write one day) and the results are as priceless as what it must’ve felt like to get me to agree to go paint-balling. The welts and sores may have faded, but the story no one really believed (“Meg Goes Paint-balling”) is forever.
“Suck a fucking dick Jason”:
life living above lonestar
– 4:56 a.m.
My morning is meant to begin at 5 a.m., but thanks to signing a lease three doors down from a bar, I’m awoken by one drunk bitch’s crusade to find her car (which I hope she never found, for everyone’s sake). I drag my ass into the bathroom to find the shower-head mangled on the bathtub floor. I vaguely remember a text my roommate sent the night before.
“Totally broke the shower-head. I’ll have to show you using charades.”
I take a two-minute shower (mind you, the water is running vigorously, and straight out of the pipe), pack up, get dressed and head to Jimmy’s at 5:30 to make our friends’ incredibly optimistic 6:30 meet-up and 7 a.m. departure (I have little legs and even smaller strides).
“Did you sleep last night?
5:45 is a brave time to be awake”
– 6:16 a.m.
Jimmy is concerned by my 5:30 a.m. “need anything?” text. I get there on time. Everybody else gets there around 7. We talk about the weather and how everyone is excited to shoot me.
We all look homeless
– 6:54 a.m.
Also ready for war.
“Yo my heart might explode”
– 7:29 a.m.
Five minutes into our road-trip and Roberto is on his third Red Bull. We only get lost once on the way to Pennsylvania, and use a porta-potty somewhere in Jersey. Mazel Tav.
“I can’t talk right now, this is the best part of the song” @Rmminondo during Circle of Life
– 8:17 a.m.
In the days leading up to what felt like my own death, my car-mates had asked if I would make some mix CDs — with their suggestions, of course. I made six and, while four of them skipped the whole way home (spoiler: don’t go running through the woods with anything breakable in your backpack), the best ones made the cut. See: the first track list:
- Shots – Lil Jon and LMFAO
- Ignition – R. Kelly
- Whenever, Wherever – Shakira
- Underneath Your Clothes – Shakira
- Groove is in the Heart – Deee-lite
- Lose Yourself to Dance – Daft Punk feat. Pharrell
- Burnin’ For You – Blue Oyster Cult
- Slow Ride – Foghat
- So Fresh, So Clean – Outkast
- Right Back Where We Started From – Maxine Nightingale
- Stockholm Syndrome – Blink 182
- You Get What You Give – New Radicals
- 212 – Azealia Banks
- Circle of Life – The Lion King
- In the Summertime – Mungo Jerry
- Don’t Stop ‘Till You Get Enough – Michael Jackson
- Spirit in the Sky – Norman Greenbaum
- Sugar We’re Goin’ Down – Fall Out Boy
- White Houses – Vanessa Carlton
“Getting on the road by 7:30 a.m. is like putting a man on the moon for our friends”
– 8:19 a.m.
We left late, but we’re still really proud.
Jimmy named his gun Gordon Ramsey because it’s very loud and mean
– 9:31 a.m.
We get there a minute past opening and it feels like fucking Christmas. Roberto tapes together his ripped pants as Robert gears up, Jimmy loads Gordon Ramsey and I sit around on my phone waiting to be told what to do. Captains pick teams. I get picked second-to-last, likely out of pity and for the sake of keeping me on the same team as the girl — my best friend/sista from another mista — who begged me to give paintball a fighting chance.
We run to each other like this is a real draft.
“Did you see Black Hawk Down?”
– 9:51 a.m.
I am scared. I tuck my phone into my bra — immediately rethink that decision — and leave it in the floral backpack I’m so gracefully carrying over my full-camo jumpsuit. The whistle blows, I take a deep breath and spend the majority of my morning hiding behind barrels and crates and cardboard cutouts. I get shot in the side by my first ex-boyfriend’s younger brother.
He’s on my team. At least I shot David in the dick (also sorry).
Update: paintball is hard
– 12:22 a.m.
I put my phone away again until…
Update: August shot me in the tit
– 6:37 p.m.
I get shot in the hands, thighs and back a few more times until we call it a day around hour nine. We hike back to the car, strip ourselves of our five-pound jumpers (hallelujah) and split up. We reconvine at Wendy’s over frostees and air conditioning. I laugh harder than I have in years over a three-hour a car-ride through three states with four of my oldest friends — then sleep.
The morning after paintball feels like
laying down in front of a truck that’s
pouring pounds of thumbtacks
on you then running you over
– 10:35 a.m. the next morning: Easter Sunday
The moral: venture outside of your comfort zone, even if that means getting shot in the tit.
Also always pack a pair of sweatpants.