Towards Disneyification of Burning Man ?

Share your views on the policies, philosophies, and spirit of Burning Man.

Towards Disneyification of Burning Man ?

Postby Tristan » Sun Sep 07, 2003 6:55 pm

Image

What bothers me most is the lack of radical change from one year to the next. Black Rock City looks the same every year, more and more organized, with nicely designed streets, the cafe looks always the same, it's always at the same place, almost like if the BRC blue-print is frozen.

You freeze the city blue-print on paper, and a few years later you pave the city street and bring water and electricity ? Scary!

Now the Temple seems to be a new BM fixture, always at the same predictable location behind the man, burning always on sunday night. I loved the burn of the temple, but it came with no surprise. I even knew how it would look like, I knew exactly where to position myself to make good photos of the burn.

People who came for the first time certainely can't understand my feelings, but if you have seen BM in the last 5 years, maybe you feel like I do.

Without radical changes, is BM going towards Disneyfication ?

Already Microsoft has added the Image emoticon in its latest version of Windows XP (click here for the BM emoticon thread).
Last edited by Tristan on Wed Sep 10, 2003 12:21 am, edited 13 times in total.
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Postby Kinetic » Sun Sep 07, 2003 7:35 pm

Uh, it won't work....besides we are now moving into Phase 3 of Larry's vision, and a 4th phase is planned. The Disneyification (sic) of BM will not happen just yet.

I do have a logo question...strip the mickey ears off the logo above and I see that logo used a lot. Then I see the logo on the DPW trucks with the ring of the city surrounding the man. What is the official logo? And most of the time the man is there with his arms down...why do the logos show him for the 10 minutes his arms are up....before the fall and break the neon or the damn things just go dark or some other shit happens....

By the way...next year, could DPW build a better man that can actually hold his freakin arms up and that stay lit? I'll gladly send a generous care package to the ranch if it would help the cause.
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Postby Isotopia » Sun Sep 07, 2003 7:52 pm

Try replacing the mouse ears with a Stetson.
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Postby RebA! » Sun Sep 07, 2003 8:08 pm

Isotopia wrote:Try replacing the mouse ears with a Stetson.


Image
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Postby Tristan » Sun Sep 07, 2003 8:08 pm

> Uh, it won't work....besides we are now moving into Phase 3 of Larry's vision, and a 4th phase is planned. The Disneyification (sic) of BM will not happen just yet.

Disneyification = Phase 5 ?

> By the way...next year, could DPW build a better man that can actually hold his freakin arms up and that stay lit?

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Postby Lydia Love » Sun Sep 07, 2003 8:37 pm

Reba, that's hilarious

if i'd have taken a drink right then it would have come out the nose fer sure[/img]
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Postby Stormy » Sun Sep 07, 2003 8:41 pm

Kinetic wrote:By the way...next year, could DPW build a better man that can actually hold his freakin arms up and that stay lit? I'll gladly send a generous care package to the ranch if it would help the cause.


Better yet, why not get out to the Playa a couple of weeks early and help build the Man? :lol:
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Postby PJ » Sun Sep 07, 2003 8:44 pm

New Burning Man logo ?



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Postby Spokes » Mon Sep 08, 2003 8:28 am

could DPW build a better man that can actually hold his freakin arms up and that stay lit?


Personally, I hope they never get it fixed. It added just of touch of Spinaltapiness before the fucking incredible pyro.
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Postby Zane5100 » Mon Sep 08, 2003 8:33 am

Have say I like the fucked up burns. It helps strip away some of the "professional" slickness that the org seems to try for.
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Postby liebling » Mon Sep 08, 2003 8:38 am

PJ wrote:
New Burning Man logo ?



They can beg all they want, but they can't have my avatar.


what the heck IS your avatar? i've pondered for days over that.

the neck of a balloon?

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Postby Spokes » Mon Sep 08, 2003 8:47 am

The Wednesday night art burn was certainly a cluster fuck. They lit it up in a full on blow and then promptly dashed in with a fire truck, lights and horn blaring and put it out half burned. I couldn't figure out if somebody actually thought it wouldn't scatter embers for half a mile when they lit it or if some of the burning parts showed up in the Temple and somebody thought it might go up too. Inside info anybody?
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Logo?

Postby actiongrl » Tue Sep 09, 2003 5:44 pm

The man with the swooping line around it was technically the Ranger logo, but is also used interchangeably with the standard "man" symbol that you see used most of the time.

So, they're both "official".


Hope that helps.

PS I am not the authority on the matter, but my impression of the discussions I heard from staff at the teardrop burn were that it was terribly windy and there was concern it would, given its proximity to the Temple, cause it to conflagrate.
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Postby PJ » Tue Sep 09, 2003 5:49 pm

liebling wrote:what the heck IS your avatar? i've pondered for days over that.


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Postby Jane Eric » Tue Sep 09, 2003 6:32 pm

In 2001 the Man's arms were up first thing Saturday morning and were up all day. I look for that now but nope. I kinda like having them up all day on Saturday, was that an anomoly?
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Postby Tristan » Tue Sep 09, 2003 7:33 pm

Jane Eric wrote:In 2001 the Man's arms were up first thing Saturday morning and were up all day. I look for that now but nope. I kinda like having them up all day on Saturday, was that an anomoly?

Yes, I liked the 2001 man with the arms up Saturday.

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Postby PJ » Tue Sep 09, 2003 7:57 pm

Jane Eric wrote:In 2001 the Man's arms were up first thing Saturday morning and were up all day.


Was that the year the arms contained fireworks? And, when one arm fell early, the fireworks were shot into the crowd? That was way cool.
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Postby Tristan » Tue Sep 09, 2003 8:15 pm

Oh yeah, I had forgotten this part :)

Maybe some day Disney engineers will volonteer to show BM DPW how to build a man that can keep his arms up ?
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Postby PJ » Tue Sep 09, 2003 8:25 pm

Tristan wrote:Maybe some day Disney engineers will volonteer to show BM DPW how to build a man that can keep his arms up ?


Shit going wrong is more in keeping with the atmosphere of the event. Perfection is for tourists.
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Postby electrolux » Tue Sep 09, 2003 8:25 pm

This year I made it to the eggchair vs. pyromid burn. But nobody told me they were packing the pyromid with fireworks. Burning debris fell right into the crowd which kinda freaked a few people out. Good stuff.
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Postby Tristan » Tue Sep 09, 2003 8:49 pm

PJ wrote:
Tristan wrote:Maybe some day Disney engineers will volonteer to show BM DPW how to build a man that can keep his arms up ?


Shit going wrong is more in keeping with the atmosphere of the event. Perfection is for tourists.

I was KIDDING !!!!!
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Postby Kinetic » Tue Sep 09, 2003 9:04 pm

I wish I could go out to the playa earlier and help build the man. Alas obligations here in Missouri prevent me from doing anything more than sending DPW a care package instead....which I'm sure is much more appreciated than my presence at the work ranch.

As for Pyromid vs. Eggchair, I loved it. It was a nice counterbalance to the deeply emotional temple burn for me. The temple burn was the end of my promise to Tallinn to take his last art to BM so I was emotionally drained and I sat down by the tape to watch Pyromid vs. Eggchair....and that burn did not disappoint. When everyone started dancing and the pile of wood next to the Pyromid had people tossing it into the fire, it lifted me up like nothing else could. It really was a perfect Sunday thanks to the Pyromid / Eggchair burn.
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Postby Stormy » Tue Sep 09, 2003 9:09 pm

Kinetic wrote:I wish I could go out to the playa earlier and help build the man. Alas obligations here in Missouri prevent me from doing anything more than sending DPW a care package instead....which I'm sure is much more appreciated than my presence at the work ranch.


Is that care package going to include a nice gouda to go with all the whining you've been doing on the E-playa? Go out and build a fantastic theme camp or some really intense art installation and then you can tell the rest of us how much we suck ass. :twisted:
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Postby nipples » Tue Sep 09, 2003 9:12 pm

[quote="Tristan"]>

> By the way...next year, could DPW build a better man that can actually hold his freakin arms up and that stay lit?"

interesting take on it, Tristan.
your mileage varies from my own in that i see the man as "is" up until the point his arms hit the apex, then as a phoenix or past this existance.. so whether it breaks and burns & falls apart a half second later or a half hour later (i do like it when an arm shorts out at apex though), i am happy as a clam in mud.
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Postby girlie » Tue Sep 09, 2003 9:28 pm

electrolux wrote:This year I made it to the eggchair vs. pyromid burn.


That was my favourite burn of the year. Good level of danger, bright and firey, and best of all... very very silly! Loved the enthusiasm of the burn artists and the hoopla of the crowd.

It gave me faith that we haven't fallen to the Disneyland stage. And i have enough faith in the general population of BRC that Burning Man will keep going in one form or another.

I wonder if more ways could be deviced to help participants become more involved in setting the course of the event. I think many people feel disconnected from the burning man organization, and feel that the llc is creating all this for us, instead of all us creating it together. If Burning Man feels like it is changing in negative ways shouldn't we be able to turn that around?
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Postby Kinetic » Tue Sep 09, 2003 9:28 pm

Stormy, I passed on doing any art this year because I focused on taking a 15 year old sister out to BM for the first time, and making her experience the best it could be. I also worked at the Greeter's gate, and I was also out there on a special project this year. My best friend Tallinn died 6 days after the Sept 11th attacks. He was in Manhattan and when the South tower fell, he was hit by the debris. He was knocked unconscious, and was pulled to safety by strangers he never knew. When he regained consciousness he basically got carried out of the city and was finally able to call home. He got a ride back to Chicago and once home he knew he wasn't feeling well. Still he went into his studio and made several things before he got too sick to continue. His wife insisted he go to the ER, they admitted him, he got worse as they found out he had complications and internal injuries and he slipped into a coma not long after that. He passed away Sept 17th, 2001....one of the forgotten victims of 9/11.

Late 2002 his wife and daughter approached me and made a special request. Tallinn wanted to go to BM, and since he was no longer with us, could I take his art there instead. I didn't have the resources to do it, my mom is undergoing chemo treatments for Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, Low Grade, Stage 4, and there are a lot of other issues that were obstacles. Still I agreed to do it and over the past year I've had over 100 people from my work to total strangers help me make it to BM in 03. When I told them what I was doing and about Tallinn's last request and dream, the doors opened. And so I was able to make the trip to BRC this year. It is truly a miracle that made it happen.

I took his irridescent glass and per his requests, 4 pieces were given away at the gift boxes at Kathanika. 3 pieces were given away at random to people I met by chance. 2 were put into the temple burn. And the last one as I was told at the last second was for me to hold on to. On top of that I took stuff for DPW, I took stuff that I gave to various bars and I feel I gave more than I took back materially. Emotionally is another story....I got recharged. But anyway I don't want a pity party but hopefully this will quiet your gouda rant.....I earned my right to whine and bitch, but while I do my bitching I continue to try and help others. You might want to look up some of my other posts. I'm not the negative SOB you think I am.

Reserving the full right to whine and bitch......
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Postby Stormy » Tue Sep 09, 2003 11:08 pm

Kinetic,

Please consider lightening up a bit here. I was jabbing at you in a fun way. I think you got that, but if not, I was at least half-joking here. Though serious about the fact that when people complain, it's their responsibility to take action and find their own solutions. Coming to Burning Man with expectations won't serve anyone well. A ticket guarentees you entry to the City. It is entirely up to you to have fun and it's kind of silly to have expectations about how a camp should serve or entertain you or anyone here.

While I am sorry to hear of your losses, it doesn't offer a valid excuse for whining. It never occured to me to use such things in my own life as an excuse to whine about how other people are doing with their camps and whether or not they are fulfilling my amusement park expecations.

We all take losses with us. I was fortunate to have a friend that escaped the Twin Towers. I did have other losses in my life. I lost my father-in-law just a few months ago. I still can't believe what an amazing man he was and how much he gave so selflessly as a volunteer to his community for years even after having a heart attack and having tri-weekly dialysis. A good friend of my husband had his ashes put in the head of the man. I don't know many people who got that honor. Some friends built a theme camp of service and care in his honor since that's what he was all about. I was fairly ill myself this summer. I spent the day before my husband left for Burning Man in the emergency room. I had to set up a classroom and move lots of stuff for a week before I could go out to the playa. I ran a substantial risk of getting heat stroke due to a medication that I was taking. I weighed the risks and went, but tried to take extra precautions when dealing with the heat. Volunteered for the organization for 4 six hour shifts and did 2.5 shifts at a theme camp. Guess I was too busy to spend time bitching about other people's camp very much. Perhaps it's from three years of helping put a camp together, that I realize what hard work it is. A theme camp is also a volunteer effort. One could just as easily be a spectator and let other people entertain, feed or booze you and then turn around and complain about how they didn't do it well enough.

Kinetic wrote:Stormy, I passed on doing any art this year because I focused on taking a 15 year old sister out to BM for the first time, and making her experience the best it could be. I also worked at the Greeter's gate, and I was also out there on a special project this year. My best friend Tallinn died 6 days after the Sept 11th attacks. He was in Manhattan and when the South tower fell, he was hit by the debris. He was knocked unconscious, and was pulled to safety by strangers he never knew. When he regained consciousness he basically got carried out of the city and was finally able to call home. He got a ride back to Chicago and once home he knew he wasn't feeling well. Still he went into his studio and made several things before he got too sick to continue. His wife insisted he go to the ER, they admitted him, he got worse as they found out he had complications and internal injuries and he slipped into a coma not long after that. He passed away Sept 17th, 2001....one of the forgotten victims of 9/11.

Late 2002 his wife and daughter approached me and made a special request. Tallinn wanted to go to BM, and since he was no longer with us, could I take his art there instead. I didn't have the resources to do it, my mom is undergoing chemo treatments for Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, Low Grade, Stage 4, and there are a lot of other issues that were obstacles. Still I agreed to do it and over the past year I've had over 100 people from my work to total strangers help me make it to BM in 03. When I told them what I was doing and about Tallinn's last request and dream, the doors opened. And so I was able to make the trip to BRC this year. It is truly a miracle that made it happen.

I took his irridescent glass and per his requests, 4 pieces were given away at the gift boxes at Kathanika. 3 pieces were given away at random to people I met by chance. 2 were put into the temple burn. And the last one as I was told at the last second was for me to hold on to. On top of that I took stuff for DPW, I took stuff that I gave to various bars and I feel I gave more than I took back materially. Emotionally is another story....I got recharged. But anyway I don't want a pity party but hopefully this will quiet your gouda rant.....I earned my right to whine and bitch, but while I do my bitching I continue to try and help others. You might want to look up some of my other posts. I'm not the negative SOB you think I am.

Reserving the full right to whine and bitch......
Last edited by Stormy on Wed Sep 10, 2003 9:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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teardrop burn

Postby tepepinda » Wed Sep 10, 2003 12:08 pm

Spokes wrote:The Wednesday night art burn was certainly a cluster fuck. They lit it up in a full on blow and then promptly dashed in with a fire truck, lights and horn blaring and put it out half burned. I couldn't figure out if somebody actually thought it wouldn't scatter embers for half a mile when they lit it or if some of the burning parts showed up in the Temple and somebody thought it might go up too. Inside info anybody?


I was part of the camp that built the Teardrop and I worked on it (in a very minor way).

Here's what happened:

The burn was scheduled with the BORG (which is why you saw it in the official programme What - Where - When) but they somehow forgot to tell the fire guys.

We got out there and did our thing -- sure it was blowing a bit, but we've burned tons o shit in the past in way worse conditions -- remember the temple of tears, for example? Anyway, we waited until the wind died down a little -- still blowing, but not a problem.

We lit it up and it was burning quite happily. The outside of the sculpture was made of cotton and cardboard, and some pieces of this were blowing away in the general direction of the Temple, which was over half a mile away and in no danger -- the embers were all out after 50 ft or so, and the wind kept them low to the ground.

Over at the Temple, the Gerlach Fire Dept saw this raging fire erupt. These guys had never been to BM before, and this was the first burn of the week. They radioed their dispatcher, who was apparently in Reno, who told them to go put it out. So they did.

They didn't just put it out though, they set on it like there was a baby trapped inside. Makes sense if you're putting out a housefire, but this was a sculpture on the playa. I can personally assure you there was no baby trapped inside.

By the time they got there, all the bits that were flying off as embers were done with, and it was just a bunch of wood burning happily. Nonetheless, they soaked the thing, then proceeded to pull it apart to remove the fuel.

Inside the teardrop was an iron lotus that was supposed to emerge from the burn. It was in the process of doing that in a really cool way (the petals kind of flopped open once the burnable stuff that had been holding them up was gone) when they put it out. Then they started to pull and yank at this sculpture to get inside it, causing structural damage (bent metal, broken petals -- it was there all week as a firepit if you saw it; it wasn't supposed to be all twisted like that -- the overzealous fire guys did that).

So it was a clusterfuck all right -- a bureaucratic breakdown that pretty much epitomizes the behomoth burning man has become. sure it's safer -- the default is to put the fucker out -- but it removes the possibility of responsibility and creativity from the "participants".

(don't get me started about the insane bureaucracy ... or do actually... maybe it's time to start another thread...)
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self professed expert

Postby stuart » Wed Sep 10, 2003 3:22 pm

Lame

I make a living working on disney theme parks and I gotta tell ya, burning man and disneyland aint got hardly nothin to do with eachother where execution and intent are concerned.

At MickeyCorp, we have a tiered heirarchy. Attractions Designed by comittee. We process and package an experience for a specific consumer.

At BMORG every ticket holder is invited, nay, encouraged to create their own attractions. I can build whatever I want, eat whatever I want, say whatever I want, See whatever I want.
And, it's dangerous! (although recently anaheim had a misshap that should prompt some in the legal department to borrow some verbage from the BM ticket).

I know you went to all the trouble to make that spiffy icon, but please, open your eyes

oh, and by the way, we are not 'disney engineers' we have a cutesy title 'imagineers'. And while I am sure people from show/ride could get the mans arms up w/o the electrical getting all funky, Eisner and the board sure as hell would not let you burn him after the fact.
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Postby Kinetic » Wed Sep 10, 2003 3:25 pm

I'll just apologize...9/11 and 9/17 are dark days. My attitude will sharply improve once this hell week of anniversaries is past. Stormy, I got your points...thank you for the reality check.

If I offended anyone else, my apologies go out to you too.

And yeah, I definitely need to lighten up. I'm still in hard core decompression.
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