On May 5th, 2013 I undocked the last ship from one station in Hevrice and warped it over to the other station. All in all I had moved about 120 odd ships and supplies leading up to that last one. Each one, fitted or unfitted, undocked and flown over by myself. It was a purposeful and symbolic gesture intended only for my own personal meaning. A task, an act, a cleansing motion repeated over and over again until completed. For over a year leading up to that moment, an idea had been brewing in my head. An idea born of failure and bred in the fires of desperation.
All it needed was a kick in the ass.
Officially Stay Frosty was born on May 6th, 2013. But in all senses of the word it has been rolling around in my head since the first day I undocked my Ibis in Todaki and swore I'd never, ever, join a Corporation. It took five more years of struggle, experience, wars, learning, training, failure, scrapped knees, and black eyes before everything finally came together. In many ways, Stay Frosty was born on that very first day. I just didn't know it yet.
But the past 365 days are not imaginary. Stay Frosty will be a year old tomorrow. And what may have started as one lone idiot warping a bunch of crap from one station to another, has grown beyond his initial dreams into something much more. An actual, living, breathing, dis-functional collection of casual lunatics that believe in the simple act of undocking and facing all that Eve has to offer face-to-face. As of today, we number 217 (277 in the Alliance) each of whom has come to our family from all over the known universe to partake in a special kind of no fucks given fun.
Forgive me a moment of personal pride that despite external pressures, trolling, spies, forum trolls, wars, station camping, insults, defections, betrayals, and challenges our core philosophy and beliefs remain stronger than ever. Over the past year we have not remained a lose collection of pilots, but have grown into a strong family of friends. A family eager to welcome new members, to share knowledge, to warp into danger without question, to share our loots, our enthusiasm, our failures, and our good fights. It is an incredible thing that has happened, and I cannot oversell it. It is real.
In that year we have managed to put on a successful Frigate Free for All, to participate in the NEO Tournament (and win a memorable match!), and form a new Alliance. In that year 473 pilots have come thru our doors, most of which remain our friends and supporters to this day. In that year we have managed to destroy 22,970 ships and counting. (That's an average of 63 ships a day, whatever that means.) Since June 2013 nine different pilots have led our killboard, 14 different ones if you also count total Solo kills. I could go on but that would mean spending way to much time actually looking at our killboard, something which I don't really do.
Oh, every morning when I'm having my coffee and waking up, I look to see what happened the night before. I feel each loss and enjoy every victory, let's not misunderstand what I mean. But as far as stats, efficiencies, and all that other jazz - I leave that to others. There is nothing wrong with taking pride in a killboard, other than taking pride in a killboard. The truth is, it doesn't matter. What does matter is how you feel about your time in the game. Are you having fun? Do you feel like you are getting better every day? Do you enjoy logging in? Flying with those around you? These are the things that truly matter at the end of the day.
And ultimately, after all the other stuff has been said, that is what Stay Frosty is truly all about. It is tackling a Stabber Fleet Issue with a Tristan. It is lying in wait for that Tengu in an Astero. It is warping blind into the plex before you scan it. It is taking on a ship you most likely might lose to, and then winning. It is dying and re-shipping. It is laughing at nine ships warping away from your T1 Frigate. It is having fun.
Eve can be fun. It is an amazingly beautiful, engaging, and incredibly complex place that far too many people have given a significance that doesn't exist. Eve is not, in any way, serious business. It is a mistake to consider it so. To do so breeds disappointment, frustration, and failure. After six years of playing this game, that is the lesson I learned the hard way. That is the birth of an idea. That is why Stay Frosty will endure.
We are having a blast.