The Story Behind the Duct-Taped Gamer

It's a picture just about everyone on the internet has seen at one time or another: several gamers on their computers at tables and desks, and another hanging from the ceiling, supported by duct tape while he plays Counter-Strike. Hundreds of people have claimed that they were there, but Drew Purvis and his friends know different. Purvis was the guy taped to the ceiling at a LAN party in Mason, Michigan.

“I don’t want to say it’s a closely guarded secret,” said Brian Schaeffer, one of the LAN goers. “But half the fun of seeing that picture pop up on the internet is all the stories where people say, ‘Oh yeah I know the people there.’ No you don’t! It was a small town, a random group of friends, and we literally just got goofy one day.”

The group told me they would hang out together in various houses and, sometimes, even a tire warehouse, lugging computer rigs to locations to play a variety of games. It was the summer of 2002, and at the time, Counter-Strike was the game to play. Others recount games like Command & Conquer, both Renegade and Red Alert 2, as well as Battlefield 1942 (for those with the 512 MB RAM to run it) and StarCraft custom games. Counter-Strike was the great equalizer. It could run on just about anything, and everyone had it.

For the Mason alumni, the night they taped Drew Purvis to the ceiling was just an average day, another LAN party with friends.

Schaeffer and the other friends who recall that party tell the story of why and how they taped Purvis to the ceiling and how the image went viral, at Kotaku. -via Metafilter

(Image credit: Brian Schaeffer)

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