Several years ago I was an avid paintball player. My friends and I would get together for hours of shooting faux guns at one another. My friend Shanan was quite the enthusiast. He would spend hours modifying his gun, or hiking through the area we had marked off to scout good vantage points from which to shoot.

On one particular game day Shanan was running late. When he finally arrived he explained that the reason he was so late was that he had to finish constructing his Ghillie suit, because he wanted to play in it.

The suits that you just saw in that link are professionally made, but Shanan’s was quite the homemade job. He had glued, tied, stapled, and sewn bits of vines and weeds and grass to to a hooded jumpsuit. He looked like a walking bush, but apparently that was the idea.

His suit worked like a charm that day. He actullly popped me twice. The first time I actually ran into him because I didn’t realize the bush in front of me was a person. After we finished, Shanan asked if he could leave his suit at my house so he wouldn’t have to lug it around with him. I said sure.

The next week Shanan retrieved his suit form my porch where it had lain since last we had played. We had just settled into the woods when Shanan began yelling. We all left our spots to see what was wrong. Apparently fire ants had mistaken Shanan’s Ghille suit for a real bush, and had made a nest in it while it had sat on my porch. Shanan was covered from head to toe in welts.

He promptly threw the suit away, but I’m sure he hasn’t forgotten it.

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