Carcass Wash--What's Your Opinion?

Carcass Wash--What's Your Opinion?

Postby dav725 » Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:15 am

The Human Carcass wash is one of my favorite things to do at BM....great group shower activity. Yet, when I go there, it seems that it attracts a mostly older, gay crowd. I've gone to it with friends who take one look and bail. They say the vibe is weird. What's your take on any of this?
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Postby skibear » Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:34 am

It's great ! Has my vote for one of the best events (daily)

If you're on your own and not with a camp you can get cleaned up without having to fuss with constructing a shower structure, evaporation pad, or
carrying pressurized sprayers or carrying boatloads of body wipes.

Re: "the vibe is wierd" yes, if you haven't seen a bunch of naked people
standing around. So what you'll leave soon and that the end of it.
Plenty of people of both sexes use it though maybe 3/4 male.

How many things at Burningman have a wierd vibe: (':D')

If you have any issues or don't want certain areas touched when they ask (always) you simply state your boundaries and they're respected.

They'll be there this year. Kind of out in the outer burbs at
9:00 and Grassland.

disclaimer,I have no connection with this camp.

:shock: :oops:
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The PolyParadise HCW

Postby scotto » Thu Aug 16, 2007 1:47 pm

The Human Carcass Wash is an awesome event that is not really about getting clean, but you may in fact get clean as a result.

Monday - Sunday - 3:00-4:30p - Grassland & 9:00

First you become one with the Car/Cass Wash Machine (the outer two rows), then you go through the middle row and get washed. Start with final rinse in either outer row - when there is an opening (free clear water bottle from another rinser moving up). The rinser uses a clear water spray bottle and their hands as a squeegee to rinse soap off the washee.

Then you become a hands-on scrubber (honoring boundaries!), a soaper (soapy water spray bottle), and a pre-rinse wetter (clear water spray bottle). We pass back the tools of each station (water bottles mainly) when we move forward to the next - the tools stay in place while the people percolate up. Wetters then become washees (alternating lines) and go through the middle getting washed.

When we have lots of helpers, there may be multiple scrubbers or rinsers on each side; just percolate up to the head one step at a time anyway.

We ask about and honor boundaries all along the line. These could be about soap or water near the face, about temporary tattoos not to be damaged, or about sexual or body boundaries, etc.

http://polyparadise.azcompuguy.com/hcw.htm

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carcass wash

Postby pause88 » Thu Aug 16, 2007 9:57 pm

This was the coolest thing I did last year...
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Postby dav725 » Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:47 pm

Why don't more straight guys and women join in then? It does seem that it is mostly gay men and gives off a gay vibe I think (according to about ten friends I've brought there over the past 3 years who take one look and take off).
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Postby scotto » Fri Aug 17, 2007 1:48 pm

The HCW never was about getting clean....It is an event that deals with boundaries.

It is a choice to be naked at Burning Man, ~10% of folks are actually so. But wheen you enter the HCW being naked certainly helps the washing process.

Being comfortable in standing around other naked folks, regardless of gender...being able to state your boundaries and have them honored, and being comfortable with either gender touching you in the washing process.

The event may in fact be dominating by Gay Men, I do not have direct knowledge of that as I allow others within our camp to run & organize the event each day.

But if that is the case that it is only being attanded by Gay Men, then you yourself are continuing to create that space by not participating.

If you want to get clean, and of course be touched / washed by only females, I am sure there are camps on the Playa that run such and event, or of course you could start your own event where you could exclude anyone you found undesireable.

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Postby EB » Fri Aug 17, 2007 5:18 pm

scotto wrote:The HCW never was about getting clean....It is an event that deals with boundaries.


Interesting. Never thought about it that way.

Question: Is the HCW going to be affected by the "no public showers edict" this year from the Nevada Health Department? Or since each carcass goes through individually, as it were, is it thus classified as "many individual showers" taken one right after another.

I'll check it out again this year!
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Postby scotto » Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:20 pm

Question: Is the HCW going to be affected by the "no public showers edict" this year from the Nevada Health Department?


I am unaware of this new Nevada Regulation. Is there somewhere I can view it online?

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Postby scotto » Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:53 pm

From another eplaya thread....

WATER

Burning Man does not provide water. You must bring your own. Large public pools and showers will not be permitted. Water for private use that entails full body contact or consumption must be "potable" and come from Nevada State Health Division approved water sources. If you have any questions, contact the Nevada State Health Division: (775) 687-7548.

Without having to make a call, is there a listing online of what are approved water sources?

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Postby scotto » Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:56 pm

I do appreciate all the great comments about the Human Carcass Wash. It is so amazing that so many people enjoy get so much enjoyment from the event.

It has been a Playa staple for the past 9 years and the brain child of _StrokeGreg of San Diego fame...

The Human Carcass Wash will be Monday - Sunday - 3:00p-4:30p

PolyParadise - Grassland & 9:00

www.polyparadise.com

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The HCW is for all; just understand boundaries

Postby tommyhenderson » Fri Aug 17, 2007 7:06 pm

No one stands there and asks, are you gay?

Instead, bring a water donation to the HCW and enjoy getting the playa dust off. It's not a public shower at all. And I'd say the traffic was more 3/5ths guys and 2/5ths women. The boundaries are where you set them, but it sure helps to be naked. How they do it with so little water is truly amazing.

Yes, it's about setting and acknowledging boundaries as an exercise. It's also about getting the darned playa dust off in the heat of the day. How liberating it is to get washed, then air/spin dry outside.

Yay Scotto! PP is going to ROCK!
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Postby legzander » Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:57 am

"Why don't more straight guys and women join in then? It does seem that it is mostly gay men and gives off a gay vibe I think (according to about ten friends I've brought there over the past 3 years who take one look and take off)."

Just plain wrong.

I have been at the carcass wash many times and it has been a very comfortable mix of men and women - and the only "vibe" was of people sharing a fun, empowering experience. Quite frankly - any sexual stuff (gay or straight!) read into this event is completely your own and your friends stuff, and should certainly not deter anyone with an open mind from going to - the kind of enriching, expanding - fun! - event I comes to Burning Man for.
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Postby Ugly Dougly » Sat Aug 18, 2007 8:50 am

If you're "noticing" the gay men and the gay "vibe" then maybe you have some soul-searching to do. :?
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Postby dav725 » Sat Aug 18, 2007 10:12 am

As always, it's kind of impossible to post a qustion on eplay without getting slammed.

I have been to BM for five years. I love the carcass wash. I go every year. It's one of my favorite things. I go every day when I'm there.

But I've been confused when others have felt weird vibes. I just feel friendliness...so I was asking if others had the opinion that my friends had...that's all.

I guess my next question might be how it is that so many people post questions on eplay and end up getting bashed by the community.....I think it makes people hesitant to post questions.
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Postby EB » Sat Aug 18, 2007 10:48 am

dav725 wrote:I guess my next question might be how it is that so many people post questions on eplay and end up getting bashed by the community.....I think it makes people hesitant to post questions.


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Postby MikeVDS » Sat Aug 18, 2007 10:55 am

As always, it's kind of impossible to post a qustion on eplay without getting slammed.


How are you getting slammed? A lot of replies are short but none seem even close to "slamming" to me.

But I've been confused when others have felt weird vibes. I just feel friendliness...so I was asking if others had the opinion that my friends had...that's all.


They are your friends, you would know better than others. No one can really answer that question for you, just give ideas. Are they homophobic? Do they need to do some soul searching? Are you being oblivious to things they notice? If you feel friendless because of this, don't you think a little more is going on than just the wash?

Don't look at things as personal attacks, they are just direct replies to the words you wrote. If you want specific answers you need to write your question in a way so people can answer specifically.
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Gay Vibe...

Postby Stagger » Sat Aug 18, 2007 12:23 pm

A gay vibe... hum...

I've worked the HCW every year I've been to BM. The various vibes I've encountered while doing so are....

Humor: I've seen many people come up.. think this is the funniest thing they have ever seen; jump right in; and pretty much laugh their way through the whole experience. I love these people because they are having so much fun doing something they can in no way recreate in the default world. They are laughing the whole time at the craziness of this once a year opportunity.

Bravery: I've seen people who, usually through the urging of friends, decide that they will give this experience a try. In the default world the idea of touching and being touched by a series of strangers would be completely out of consideration for them; absolutely unthinkable. Yet, at Burning Man they take the brave step of becoming naked with other people and actually washing other bodies. They realized that we are constantly talking about respecting boundaries and enforcing that respect if needed. These brave souls emerge with a new experience under their belts - and normally a smile on their faces that says - wow.. that was scary and unique.

Crazy Satisfaction: I've seen people show up (I admit, this is usually women) who see the oppurtunity to touch other peoples bodies in a non-sexual manner as something they just can't resist. I imagine in the default world the oppurtunity to be safely naked with a group of other people is not something they get to enjoy often; and the opportunity to actually touch another human being never happens unless they are having sex. Here suddenly is they can check out lots of men, and lots of women, without it being sexual. They make great scrubbers!!!

Gay: There have been times when a group of gay men or women have gone through the line, and it's obvious they are enjoying the experience too. I never saw anyone bothered by this since the rule is - state and ask for a person's boundaries BEFORE you touch them.

Straight: The only overtly sexual act I've ever seen while working the HCW was between a man and a woman. I immediately stepped up and asked if there was a problem with boudaries. As an answer I got several smiles from the group, and "No problem here" from the people involved. It was apparent that, like the gay group, this was a completely hetero group that was enjoying the experience. Since the immediate participants had no problem; since the progress of the line was not being impeded; since other participants in the HCW seemed not to even notice; I simply said ... carry on.

Surprise: I've frequenly noticed surprise. There are alot of surprising things in the HCW. How cold the water is! I remember one woman coming through who had the funniest squeak every time she got squirted with water. How cold the breeze is! You might have been hot to start with, but you won't be once you get wet. How little water we actually use. You can get clean with almost nothing using our method. How great it feels to have 4 people scrub you down! Ever had a multi person massage... It's a little like that. I've had to remind folks not to let someone fall down from enjoyment. How fast the dust coats you again!!
Let's face it... It's Burning Man... You're not really going to get clean. You really just exchanging old dust for new dust --- oh and you smell better when you leave too.

Exhaustion: The HCW is an event that is created by the particpants. The "crew" works. We don't wash people... we
- Keep the line moving
- Monitor for innappropriate/unwanted behavior
- Constantly remind people to ask for and state boundaries
- Tell people it's okay if their boundaries change
- Fill/distribute water and soap bottles
- Hawk the event on the street (and monitor for cameras - This is a NO CAMERA event)
- Explain to arrivals what is going on and how it works.
- Handle the water supply - Setting up before hand
- Handle the grey water - Taking it to our processing facily afterward.
- Taking the kind donations of happy participants. (um.. water that is)
- Closing down the event (which has a method of it's own)

Do all that for an hour and a half and you're tired... Hallelujah for the volunteers who have made this happen every year, and special kudos to StrokeGreg - the quintessential master of ceremonies year after year
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Re: carcass wash

Postby Nogoodnik » Tue Aug 21, 2007 12:51 am

[quote="pause88"]This was the coolest thing I did last year...[/quote]

Quite agreed. It was the highlight of BOTH Burns I went to, and that's why I've decided to camp with PolyParadise for the foreseeable future.

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'Gay Vibe' at caracas wash?

Postby Friendly Jen » Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:24 pm

Well I'll be there washing this year. I promise I'll only wash your ass if you give me permission, even if you drop the soap!

Seriously tho, maybe it seems more male dominated because it is actually very accepting where as other 'showers' are only looking for women to objectify?
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Virgin view

Postby Nor757 » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:38 am

This will be my virgin year at BM. The Human Carcass Wash has been number one (there are several) on my "must do" list for BM. The very thought of it is crazy and it sounds like so much fun!
Hetero male but not afraid that washing and getting washed by others is going to do me any harm.
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Postby Trixy » Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:03 am

Dear Nor757,

That's the spirit! You are correct in your assumption that being washed by another man (no matter of color, creed, sexual orientation, gender, hair color, etc, etc.....) will not harm you in any way!

Open up your minds people, let the sunshine in!

But keep the filter on for dust!

It's gonna be bad this year.
Chillax, dude.
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Postby cornelius » Thu Aug 23, 2007 1:50 am

No need to worry pal. The health dept. has seen to it that no more communal bathing occur in the confines of Black Rock City. "Large public pools and showers are not permited".
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carcass wash banned?

Postby serendipity » Thu Aug 23, 2007 10:20 am

but the carcass wash is not a communal bath or shower. people do not share water. it's no more a shared shower than it is for a group of people to be sprayed down by a random passing watergun.

i heart the HCW. it's all about the love. the gentle, safe, boundary-honoring touching. the volunteers and host camp RULE for working hard to keep this a safe space year after year.

much love
see you soon
xoxo
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Postby cornelius » Thu Aug 23, 2007 11:30 pm

Gee Whiz, I wish I coulda taken part in the carcass wash that she's talkin' about. The last group wash I saw was called a "foam party" out in B.R.C. in 2002. A buncha fat, shirtless, 50-something, business men standing around under a white plastic tent with some misters going. They had soapy mits too! It was an aweful sight to behold. Uber Creep Factor.
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Postby Hootdaddy » Fri Aug 24, 2007 1:59 am

Our NC regional (Transformus) featured a carcass wash this year. It was not nearly as organized as the BRC affair, but the principle was the same; first you wash, then you rinse, then you get washed. It takes a minute to adjust your reality, but I really enjoyed the work once I got past worrying if I was doing it "right." I washed about five or six folks, among them Kernal, who is about 60, I guess; and Stacy, who was probably around 30 and a BBW. If you focus on what you think would feel good to you (physically, but not sexually) as you are washing, you'll give good service and feel that service returned to you when you are washed.

However, don't forget the sunscreen. You might be out in the sun nekkid for as much as an hour, depending, and you don't want to get burned. Trust me.
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Postby Batmoose » Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:36 pm

OMG!

If by some miracle the Body wash is still around for 08, I promise that my wife and I will stop by and participate!

This sounds like so much fun! And I am secure in my sexuality, so touch away! I will respect any boundries and I bet you can wash my wife's bits and hear her delightful squeal!

I will be looking for you, be sure. I met some great people from poly village whilst visiting the smoochDome this year, and I hope to learn more and explore.

See you in 08! :]
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Postby Fat SAM » Tue Sep 11, 2007 7:44 pm

This was the first year that I was able to screw up the courage to go to the Carcass Wash and acutally participate. Last year, I had my head washed, and my hands, but I stopped there. This year, aided by the company of many of my campmates, I went through the whole process and loved it. It was intimidating at first but I was so busy once I was in the actual wash that there was no time to worry about being judged or about any weirdness...It was really great. Very liberating, at the risk of sounding cliche, and very enjoyable. And best of all, it was WET. And sort of clean. But WET and COOL. So nice.
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Lifechanging Shower ;)

Postby nbraziel » Thu Sep 13, 2007 5:06 pm

Stagger, I really appreciated your reply and agree with a lot of what you said about the Carcass wash. Most poignantly, that human touch is something incredibly special--psychologists do studies on this, and it actually has a direct impact on your happiness. Some people get rarely any, but NO one gets enough.

I had absolutely no intention of being naked at the burn (was a virgin this year). But, I spent an afternoon with some carnies I'd just met, and we were walking past the Carcass wash to my camp. The shaman took one look and dropped trou, like it was the most natural thing in the world. Next thing I know, they're all naked, and I'm feeling like the strange one for wearing clothes. So in I went.

There couldn't have been more than 20 people at the wash at that point, so we had lotsa calm to talk with the hcw workers, who spoke about all bodies being lovely, respectful touch, and respecting boundaries. It turned out to be a reviving and, dare I say, spiritual experience.

I probably needed to do this with strangers before I could begin to be comfortable naked among friends. Later that week, a group suggestion circled around our shade structure, and, next thing we knew, ten naked Stag campers were washing. It was a crowded day, more than 40 at the wash, full of laugher, faster, more kinetic energy. The two experiences were different, both incredibly positive. And by the end of the week, I was able to drop the towel that had become my permanent garb and run naked after the water truck. (Which, on day one, if you'd told me I'd do, I would bet my life against it.) And I DEFINITLY want to thank the Human Carcass Wash for that. That comfort is a gift I have absolutely taken home with me, and I think there's a way for everyone to do this comfortably--in a group, alone, with one partner, on a quiet afternoon, on a busy--and I think most people will be really rewarded by the experience.
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No, us queers are mostly elsewhere

Postby kitten_sf » Thu Sep 20, 2007 4:05 pm

As a huge faggot myself, I've never found the Poly Paradise's fabulous Washing operation to be terribly gay.

In fact, they're mostly just friendly, kind straight people who enjoy helping others liberate themselves. Maybe your friends are reacting to the gender balance in a nude environment.

If there was more men than women they probably assumed it was queer... but honestly, us queers don't see Poly Paradise as one of "our" camps at all, but rather, as the friendly "allies" of the gay community down the street. In fact, I would probably go get washed more if it was more gay... but it's not.

Which is fine... our camp is plenty queer for me.. and their good work benefits the larger society (which is mostly straight as we all know) ENORMOUSLY in terms of human development.

The folks at Poly Paradise really know their stuff, btw, and are some of the most organized camps out there. Their gifts to the community are many & legion. For instance, when our water truck was a day late they loaned us enough to get by until it showed. We all should have playa neighbors that fabulous.
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liberate yourself

Postby GREENPENIS » Sun Sep 23, 2007 8:21 pm

Liberate yourself without the human touch.
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