My #1 biggest goal I had for my SHOT Show was to meet all of my Sponsors in person, shake their hand and thank them face to face for their faith and support of me in both competition and training. Well I almost 100% accomplished my goal. I’m down to 3 sponsors that I haven’t personally met out of my current 16. I met 5 of my sponsors for the first time at SHOT Show, which is pretty dang cool if you ask me! But when I say sponsor I mean the company, so not only did I meet the head of those companies, the people who gave me the sponsorship and entrusted me with representing them, but I also met a bunch of their employees as well that I have had or will have contact with. I really liked putting names to faces and making things more personal makes this sport and industry come to life.
Take Mr. Matt Jacques of Victory First. He is officially one of the most solid-est dudes I have ever met, and I’ve met quite a few. He’s a down to earth super good guy and smart. If you missed it at SHOT you should hop on your Google machine and look up his new V43 slides, because if that isn’t changing the game, I don’t know what is. (Another item on my wants/ needs list… right behind upgrading my Tac Training G17 toma V17 slide.)
Not only is he good people but he’s also an awesome firearms instructor… Who may have taken time out of the chaos to work with me a bit on my presentations… Yes, Mr. Matt is that level of awesome!
Magpul is another example of meeting with solid peeps. Not only did I get to finally meet Mr. Duane Liptak, the man who gave me the thumbs up to represent such an amazing company, but I also got to talk with the infamous Mr. Jon Canipe, Mr. Cris, Mr. Drake, Mr. David and my old 8th birthday tour guide Mr. Dozier.
Why only meet one when you can shake the hands of many?!? Same goes for Midwest Industries, Mr. Troy and his crew of bandits specifically Mr. Andy and Pete, as well as the GAT Marketing team where I got to hang out with Mr. Charles, Keith, Jack-Jack and the crew.
It wasn’t just my sponsors that I had a ball seeing face to face, it was also guys that I’ve heard about, follow on Instagram, talked to on P&S or was introduced to by others. I met some real solid dudes both on and off the show floor. I met marketing gurus, masters of the grams, and the men and women that make/use real world the amazing products I love so much. I met some of the best people on the planet at SHOT Show, people from around the country and around the world (Including my awesome buddy Mick from Australia… love that guy!)
But with the best comes… “The others.”
Where there is good there must be some bad, and that’s where I get the unique opportunity to talk about people watching. I was taught the wonderful art of people watching early on by my Dad, for multiple reasons like safety/security, situational awareness and most importantly comedic value.
People watching; looking at their habits and trends, personality vs appearance, and yes the occasional laugh. People watching is great because you can learn a lot not only about that person, but also about what they know and don’t know and the knowledge they hold… or lack thereof.
I just wanted to address that SHOT Show is one of the best places in the history of ever to do some seriously fun people watching, both for good, and for “evil” ;). The last thing I’ll say about the people category at SHOT Show is that it was awesome to get to see some buddies again that I’ve trained with around the country with in various tactical classes, or people I haven’t seen in a few years (which with my age sounds exaggerated but it’s not I promise)