Nov 4, 2015

Generosity and Gratitude

We all know that our community is a generous one. Stories of ISK and in-game items being gifted to to players abound. EVE players donate to PLEX for GOOD to aid in various causes, support auctions and raffles at player meets and FanFest to benefit Child's Play or other organizations, and donate money to help buy pizza for all of CCP or assist a fellow player in need. Like many in our community, I have done lots of little things both in game and in real life to help make an EVE comrade's day a little brighter. Given ISK or other in-game items, handmade or purchased gifts, Rixx Javix posters, Signal Cartel swag, books, a collection of (the now defunct) EON magazine, and more over the years. Sometimes an opportunity presents itself and it's just nice to do something special for someone--maybe as a thank you for something they've done for me in-game or in RL or maybe just as a Random Act of Kindness.

And every once in awhile, what goes around comes around. And boy oh boy, has it been coming around lately.

First there was the amazing poster that Johnny Splunk had made for me by a fellow corpmate, Forcha Alendare. This poster was to commemorate Signal Cartel achieving 400 members and arrived around my birthday back in July. I posted about it on Reddit but notice that I never did blog about it as I intended. The amount of effort that went into its creation still astounds me.

It hangs above my desk and makes me smile every time I look at it. It's remarkable that Signal is now almost double the number of members we were back then!

Hint: Click the images to see them larger.

Next came EVE Vegas and all the awesome swag I received, including a pink Neocom polo shirt from Protovarious, lovely handmade earrings from Kira Tsukimoto, a Total EVE t-shirt from Dirk MacGirk and Wiggles, and fat bee pin from Sion Kumitomo, BRAVE patch and penknife from Dunk Dinkle, and much more. But the best of all was a grungy pink Astero 3D model given to me by Johnny Splunk. You know him: a founder of EvE-Scout, partner in Signal Cartel's founding and leadership, and one of the nicest and best persons I've ever had the pleasure of befriending or working with in game or out. I don't mind telling you that my jaw dropped in amazement when I opened the box. Later on when Johnny had the chance to tell me about the process and effort that went into the creation of this 6" long, highly detailed and complicated form--from the struggles to get the forms to 3D-print correctly to the fantastic work on the custom paint job--I was even more amazed. And frankly, humbled that someone thought I was worth of such a gift. Then to top it all off, he also included an SOE trim kit for my Jeep--or at least, that's how I used those awesome decals

They say good things come in threes. You may recall that I did a portrait of Jamwara DeCalicoe Ashley not too long ago. We have chatted here and there since then. And then...last week, she direct-messaged me on Twitter. (Aside: I don't know Jam in RL so just go with the character's gender for pronouns.) Seems that when Jam ordered a copy of EVE Universe: The Art of New Eden LIMITED EDITION, she was sent (and billed for) two copies. She held on to the extra copy and recently decided to give it to me "because you've done so much for the community".  MIND BLOWN. The regular edition was already on my wish list, but holy crap, who knew that wish would come true like this?! The book arrived in today's mail, still in its original shrink-wrap. I almost didn't want to open it until I could do so with a couple of hours to just get lost in it. But I had to get pictures for this blog post, right?!

This is a gorgeous book and a splendid addition to my collection of EVE and art books. As an artist, I know I will spend many, many hours studying and enjoying the work and the words it contains that define and describe the art of EVE Online.

Wow. I don't even know what to say in response to being the recipient of the kind of generosity I've described in this post, not to mention the time, effort, and talent that others have invested on behalf of Signal Cartel because they believe in the corp or because I asked for a favor. A simple thank-you hardly seems adequate in comparison to my appreciation for such generous acts. It's not always easy to gracefully accept gifts even when freely given in friendship. But then I remind myself of everything I've done for other EVE players and that makes it easier to accept such generosity as karma or good deeds being paid forward. Regardless, my gratitude is sincere and enormous.

It is truly something special to be a part of the EVE community. It hits me right in the feels every time one of us does something helpful, thoughtful, kind, generous, or amazing for someone--and especially when that someone is me. A heartfelt thank you to everyone.

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