About This Show
I’m an aspiring digital nomad who recently quit a full time job at a high growth startup to pursue a nomadic and minimalist lifestyle. I’m passionate about meditation, personal development, and pursuing projects that are rewarding and meaningful to me.
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Episode 34: The Progression of Ollie Lang
Oliver “Ollie” Lang is a professional paintball player, widely considered to be the greatest paintball player of all time. Starting out playing with pump guns in the woods, Ollie moved on to help start San Diego Dynasty and pioneered many of the paintball strategies and tactics that are still in use today. Paintball gave him the opportunity to travel around the world and the success of his team made him a celebrity in the paintball community.
Paintball is seen by many as a fun activity to do on the weekend for a corporate retreat or a birthday party. However, there is community around the world that has adopted paintball as a lifestyle and a culture. I personally have not met many people as passionate about what they do as those that I have met who play paintball. This community shares the sacrifices of weekends away from the family, struggles to pay the bills, and the lack of popularity that other sports maintain.
The culture is a fascinating one, with its own style, terminology (see agg), and singular website that serves as the communication hub for all things paintball. It has had moments of entry into pop culture, with video games like Greg Hastings’ Tournament Paintball and a brief stint on ESPN. However, for the most part it has remained very much a niche sport and has struggled to achieve the mainstream success that other action sports have commanded.
Nevertheless, Ollie is considered as the GOAT and his first team is considered as the greatest team of all time. San Diego Dynasty (aptly named) won tournament after tournament, so much so that people started to root for anybody who they were playing against. They even had an international rivalry with Russian Legion, invoking USA chants during their games and drawing comparisons to Rocky vs Drago.
Ollie made headlines in 2006 when he became the first player to receive a contract. He left Dynasty to join the Dye-sponsored Ironman and reportedly received a 6 figure contract (unheard of at the time). Some saw this as being disloyal to his childhood friends, while others commended him for legitimizing paintball and further advancing the sport.
After years of success in paintball and living on the road Ollie decided to take a leave of absence to travel and explore the world. What he did during that year off changed his trajectory completely and put him on a new path. Some of his adventures are shown in FIFTEEN: a documentary highlighting Dynasty’s pursuit of a 15th year in a row with a tou