15 Years Later, Here's Why A Gamer Was Duct-Taped To A Ceiling
July 7, 2017 10:09 PM   Subscribe

In which Eric Van Allen from Kotaku tracks down the people behind a 15 year old photo of a LAN party with someone duct-taped to a ceiling beam. You know, like usual.
posted by hippybear (23 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
I never expected to get the backstory for this picture I've seen so many times. Satisfying closure, though I have to say it wasn't as epic as I'd hoped.
posted by Greg_Ace at 10:27 PM on July 7 [1 favorite]

Oh god. LAN parties were life.
posted by hototogisu at 10:27 PM on July 7 [10 favorites]

It's exactly as epic as I imagined it would be. Which is to say -- it was a goofy lark that lives on infamy.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:32 PM on July 7 [9 favorites]

I saw this floating around imgur this morning and my jaw dropped because I had only ever seen that one shot that everyone had seen. The guy eating pizza. It was like finally seeing how the Matrix truly works.
posted by Fizz at 10:53 PM on July 7 [6 favorites]

Great backstory! Though especially in the pizza photo he needs a lot more upper-body support. /old achy person
posted by bendy at 12:01 AM on July 8 [1 favorite]

Once the warranty expired at 35, more and more things I see make my body ache sympathetically.
posted by hippybear at 12:17 AM on July 8 [13 favorites]

This is interesting and all but I will continue to pretend the answer is "because they were out of chairs".
posted by ckape at 1:14 AM on July 8 [6 favorites]

Aw, I miss dorky teenage LAN parties. And honestly, just being a dorky teen hanging out in a friend's basement. Glory days, man, they'll pass you by...
posted by shapes that haunt the dusk at 3:05 AM on July 8 [5 favorites]

"Some people say he's still up there ..."
posted by sebastienbailard at 3:10 AM on July 8 [14 favorites]

We weren't cool enough to duct tape people to the ceiling - we just had people crammed into closets.
posted by Lucinda at 3:23 AM on July 8 [1 favorite]

I mean, it seems obvious why you'd duct tape someone to the ceiling - to see if you could. If someone says, "gee, I wonder if we could duct tape someone to the ceiling", isn't your immediate response to get sort of thoughtful? And once you'd gotten him up there, what's he supposed to do? You don't want to take him down because you just duct-taped him up, so you give him his computer.

What made me sad about this - I looked at those photos and thought, "Fifteen years ago, I'd see internet nerds and immediately think "friends!!!! we are going to hit it off!!' and now I think, "Internet nerds, I bet they're alt-right and have just pirated the stylings and affect of nice people".
posted by Frowner at 5:15 AM on July 8 [64 favorites]

I mean, I know it's not a new thought, but I miss nerdery as it was, before the tech boom on one hand and rising social inequality on the other split it into rich fascists and poor fascists.
posted by Frowner at 5:17 AM on July 8 [24 favorites]

What made me sad about this

We could start a fad of duct-taping select people to ceilings and providing neither computers nor food...
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:29 AM on July 8

We could start a fad of duct-taping select people to ceilings and providing neither computers nor food...

posted by Fizz at 8:28 AM on July 8 [3 favorites]

"Our top story tonight on All Things Considered: A fifth corpse was found duct taped to a ceiling beam, this time in Denver. Police remain puzzled."
posted by hippybear at 8:30 AM on July 8 [6 favorites]

I now feel like the next big thing with gaming will be to buy a Nintendo Switch and take up hang-gliding.
posted by Nanukthedog at 9:35 AM on July 8 [2 favorites]

Honestly, I've never seen this photo before and I went to a bunch of these back in the 90s.
We did though have a variation on this in my circle... when people got a little too drunk and were a problem to folk's gaming rigs, we used to duct tape them to the floor and paint their faces like the Ultimate Warrior... only happened like 3 or 4 times, but... ah - memories.

And yes, pics or it didn't happen... well - sorry - no pics... this was pre-phone cameras... and I sure as hell didn't bring cameras to things. It was enough to lug a computer AND a 23 inch monitor... Note: People who live on 6th floors with no elevators in the building should not host LAN parties ever.
posted by Nanukthedog at 9:42 AM on July 8 [1 favorite]

Also never seen the photo before, thanks for the back-story!
posted by Rash at 12:51 PM on July 8

I had always just assumed he had been caught cheating (looking at enemy screen) or something like that.

In my D&D/LAN group cheaters would have to play in the box. A cardboard box taped to their head with a monitor sized hole. They would have to press the box against the monitor. One had to play, eat, drink and smoke without removing the box.

I liked the box, it made me feel safe.
posted by Dr. Curare at 2:41 PM on July 8 [7 favorites]

Yep, totally obvious why he was duct taped to the ceiling. But really glad to know what it was like and how long he was there and how enthusiastic he was about being there. That's what makes it a good story.
posted by ambrosen at 6:31 PM on July 8

"The Night They Taped Drew Purvis to the Ceiling" is my favorite Irish folksong.
posted by Faint of Butt at 8:56 AM on July 9 [8 favorites]

Ugh I miss sitting around playing CS.
posted by gucci mane at 8:53 PM on July 9

I think the best bit of this is not the part where they duct tape Drew Purvis to the ceiling. It's the part where he's a bit uncomfortable, so they cut him down and duct tape Drew Purvis to the ceiling A SECOND TIME. WITH PILLOWS.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:00 AM on July 10 [2 favorites]

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