Those Who Serve

Break Break.

Open University has a lot of pilots with real life  military experience.  You would think that because of our background, we would run OUCH ike a strict military organization.

OUCH has standards, like any military organization, I suppose.  Regulations and rules which allow us to operate smoothly.  But OUCH has no true military hierarchy.

Directors.  Instructors.  Students.  That’s about it.

The movies give people without military service a vision of what it’s like to serve as a Sailor on that ship, or the Marine storming the beach, or the Soldier assaulting that hill or the Airman dropping that bomb.  For those of us who serve, we look at these things and nod our heads and smile.  Sometimes, we bow our heads and weep.

A lot of corps make the mistake of envisioning what they are building in Eve as something like that. They pass out ranks and seniority and put people in authority over other people and build their hierarchies of Star Marshals and Supreme Commanders.  Some are very successful at this.  I guess.

Others fail.  They forget that leaders are grown, not born, that accountability goes hand and hand with authority, and that ultimately, you can’t make people log in if they don’t want to.

When you are in the military, you sacrifice your freedom and your will, your ability to do what you want to do when you want to do it.  You serve your nation by doing what she requires of you to protect it.  Sometimes it calls for you to risk your life, to protect the lives of yourself and your comrades, as a function of failed of diplomacy and political decision making.

Fortunately, most of the time, that sacrifice means that while others are out doing what they want to do, you have to guard that gate, watch that dial, paint that fence, walk that mile.  It’s tedious.  It’s boring.  You’d much rather be doing something else.  But like firefighters, you do this, because you are paid to do something while you wait for the next fire to fight.

And when someone tells you to do something you’d rather not do, you bite your tongue, nod your head and say, Yes sir.  You do it, because it must be done, and is your obligation to do so.  In this small way, you are part of the bigger machine that stands in line to protect your country.

It is the sacrifice of will that cannot be translated into a video game.  The soldier in the largest alliances in Eve can always just decide to just not play, and the directors and fleet commanders ordering ships into harms way in Eve don’t have to write letters home to the mothers of the young men and women whose ships they have just sacrificed.

Nothing will be lost except some pixels.

But it is this core of military service brings core values and traditions which has helped build OUCH into an organization with great pride and teamwork.  It has helped forge a group of great people together who provide a service to our community and instills the fellowship that men and women build while serving a greater purpose.

It is my honor to serve with them, both in the world, and in the game.

It’s Veteran’s Day in the United States of America.  For those of you who serve, or have served in the uniform services around the world, thank you for your sacrifice and service.