|Villa Beilstein...like it says in the picture.|
|Berg Eltz...well part of it, anyway.|
For the uninitiated, Magic: The Gathering has a very strong organized play community. These organized events are held all over the world and consist of hundreds and sometimes thousands of people playing Magic for cash and or valuable prizes. That this organized play is still running strong after 17 years of the game’s existence is phenomenal to me. To be asked to appear at one of these events as a guest was even more phenomenal.
What the organizers expected was around 1,000 Magic enthusiasts vying for a variety of prizes. What the organizers got was over 1,800. To the layperson, that may not seem like a whole lot of players, but trust me when I tell you that it is. Especially when many of those fans have stacks of cards an inch thick for you to sign!
|The Playing Masses|
As a fan of many things, I understand the desire to get signatures and meet the people responsible for the things I love. I just don’t understand it when it applies to me. I’m just some guy who bumbled into being an artist on Magic. It never occurred to me that there would be fans attached to that. It never occurred to me that someone might want me to make an appearance. I’m just some guy. A guy who happens to paint the weird and wonderful from time to time.
|Ah yes, the magical ropes...|
I met many great folks while there — folks from all over the world. Germany, Luxemburg, Brazil, Spain, The Netherlands, France, Belgium, Austria, Denmark, the U.S. All there to play the game. There to have fun. Even the ones who’d lost were enjoying themselves. It was a great crowd. Seriously.
|Signing away the hours...|
For the opportunity I have to thank Dieter Schoeters and his crew. How they pull off and coordinate these events is something that lies beyond my realm of understanding. You guys treated me better than I deserve and I thank you all. To the people of Germany, I thank you for accepting my meager attempts at speaking to you in German, and I also appreciate your willingness to stoop to English when I failed miserably to get the message. I do not know if I’ll ever get a chance to appear at another tournament in some other foreign land, but I sure am happy I even got this one!