I like being a "darkwad"

A place to discuss all things involving power and lighting. Generator tips, alternative energy, lighting your camp/bike/art/self and more.

Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby some seeing eye » Tue Jul 31, 2012 10:42 pm

most red-colored lenses still allow the other colors through to some degree.


Not appreciably. A red (yellow, green, blue) LED is as close to a single wavelength you can get to without a laser. My headlamp has a clear lens, 2 white LEDs and a red LED that can be solid or blink. All switchable. Single AA.

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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby Bob » Tue Jul 31, 2012 10:46 pm

There's no amount of lighting that will keep some art car assholes from speeding through what Larry has designated as a "pedestrian city" and blaming pedestrians for getting in their way. AFAIK, since 1996, art car related deaths and serious injuries have involved drunk operators or passengers, not pedestrians. Feel free to correct me on this.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby portaplaya » Tue Jul 31, 2012 11:37 pm

some seeing eye wrote:
most red-colored lenses still allow the other colors through to some degree.


Not appreciably. A red (yellow, green, blue) LED is as close to a single wavelength you can get to without a laser...


Please note I said "red-colored lenses". Yes, LEDs are different, but that is not a counter to the statement I made.

I was envisioning red battery-powered Xmas lights or filters over white light sources. Thanks for pointing out that I should consider LEDs too.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby BBadger » Sun Aug 05, 2012 10:32 am

People still filter their white light sources, wasting light and power, instead of just buying the LEDs that produce the colors directly? Sheesh, what backwardsness.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby shroom » Mon Aug 06, 2012 3:42 pm

Shambala wrote:Just dangle one of these things from your belt and try to be a conformist! :roll:
Image



love these! and they aren't moop you can replace the batteries.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:38 pm

shroom wrote:love these! and they aren't moop you can replace the batteries.

Of course, there are disposable look alikes, so be careful.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby shroom » Tue Aug 07, 2012 5:29 am

theCryptofishist wrote:
shroom wrote:love these! and they aren't moop you can replace the batteries.

Of course, there are disposable look alikes, so be careful.


Don't want any of those!
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby Earthwalker » Tue Aug 07, 2012 4:37 pm

I've never been, so perhaps my comments are meaningless to you, but here's my thought:

You are one of nearly 60K people. Sorry if lights "ruin your experience", but it's really not just about you. It's about how annoying it is when you're walking in a parking lot and some jackhole comes around a corner going 20. Sure, he was paying attention and most likely would never have hit me, but how annoying is it to be walking along (or driving or skating) peacefully and all of a sudden you have to swerve, or even think you have to swerve, because some selfish person didn't want to have their vision affected by the bright lights??? Utilitarianism, man. Do what you want up to the point that it negatively affects others.

Point being, just because they'll never actually hit you, the fact that they all of a sudden think they're going to hit someone, and all the emotion and "buzz kill" that goes along with that, that's just lame.

PS-nice to meet you. Have a swell day :)
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby CapSmashy » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:52 am

[quote="portaplaya"Observation: When you say this is "not all about you" and then tell an anecdote about how you might run into me in the dark, you are turning this into all about you. :wink:
Additional Observation: If the bike rider can yell at me because he "can't see me", he must have remarkable hearing. (Or is exaggerating greatly.)[/quote]

The people I yelled at last year, the year before and the year before that while on my bike were yelled at they appeared in my headlamp beam, walking right in front of me on my bike. I clipped a person last year with my handlebar

I am lit up like a Christmas tree on my bike with color shift led's, a rotating beacon, etc, so you'd have to be blind not to see me coming towards you.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby RedHeaven » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:05 am

OP, it seems as if you just need one more light to be legitimately lit. I don't like too much light either but I find if I have my front and back covered substantially, I am good. I wear an LED flashlight around my neck, and either 3 small glowsticks or 1 substantial other battery op light.

Try to get stuff that is non blinky, that helps me.....something solid. doesnt have to be your head lamp, just a good decent solid something. If you go with red or blue it should be less distracting for you, too.
Glowsticks around shoes or any shoe lights are pretty fun and not In Your face....
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Postby Elorrum » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:50 am

I bring little lights to gift, but haven't offered one to somebody I was just riding by and almost hit, yet. I don't want the confrontation about whether they don't want to be lit, or me saying they need to. Though I do think they need to. One night someone bumped into the back wheel of my trike, and gave me a rash of shit about not lighting it. UM, I had a blinking red light on the seat post, and lights in the spokes, but none were placed on the exact outer edge of the tire... Some folks ARE tripping. so rules vary. I like the light on top of my hat, or pointing to the ground so I am visible, but not blinded. I don't know how other people manage it, but having my headlight on while riding a bike, or walking, just illuminates all the dust motes in front of my face, and makes it hard to focus on where the light is illuminating the ground and areas ahead.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby portaplaya » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:08 am

No one's going to be able to ride a bike in the soft playa this year anyway.

Artcars have headlights and pedestrians are easy to dodge. At least that's my theory for this year.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby motskyroonmatick » Thu Aug 09, 2012 5:45 pm

Hi. My name is Motz and I'm a Darkwad.

It's an especially difficult experience when well intentioned people start snapping glow sticks and attaching them to me like they know what's right for me. I dislike it sooo much that I have to do a preemptive strike on myself for some minimal lighting just so I don't get attacked by these glow stick pushing people. It's depressing. People just don't understand us Darkwads. Try walking a mile in our shoes this year on the playa. You never know. It may bring out your hidden inner Darkwad. You may be one of us!
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby Schtev » Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:43 am

I'm probably beating a dead horse at this point, but holy fuck does shit like this make me mad! Its not all about YOU. The lights are so OTHERS can see you, particularly vehicle drivers. It doesn't matter how well you can see! :evil:
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby otakup0pe » Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:51 am

Schtev wrote:I'm probably beating a dead horse at this point, but holy fuck does shit like this make me mad! Its not all about YOU. The lights are so OTHERS can see you, particularly vehicle drivers. It doesn't matter how well you can see! :evil:


It's OK that I don't use lights because I have exceptional vision.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby FIGJAM » Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:06 pm

And I have night blindness, so I'll see you IN the dust!! :twisted:
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby Schtev » Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:10 pm

Let us have a preemptive moment of silence for our fallen comrade. :cry:
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby Boijoy » Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:48 pm

Schtev wrote:I'm probably beating a dead horse at this point, but holy fuck does shit like this make me mad! Its not all about YOU. The lights are so OTHERS can see you, particularly vehicle drivers. It doesn't matter how well you can see! :evil:


agreed ! run over ONE little pedestrian and all of a sudden YOUR the bad guy !!
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby C.f.M. » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:00 pm

Stupid people sitting on the ground in the dark, not paying attention to what's going on around them - "darkwad."

Alert people paying attention and not lying in the path of oncoming art cars - ?

I don't like being all lit up, either. That said, I do put some sort of lightage, on my bike, for when I'm riding it around. Otherwise, I prefer to remain unlit (again, having lights/a light on me, visible, in case I need to light up). I watch where I'm going, I don't stand in front of moving vehicles, I don't lie on the ground where I can't see what's going on, etc. Never had any problems - or been heckled.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby lemur » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:03 pm

if you want to be a darkwad who sits on the ground not paying attention do so in the areas where mutant vehicles arent allowed

such as: walk in camping area..

or, the side on the other side of the city opposite to walk in camping.

nobody is ever out there.

you may want to bring your ticket stub along with you if youre going close to the trash fence.

otherwise.. enjoy the solitude.. without being afraid of being run over by a bus
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby illy dilly » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:12 pm

motskyroonmatick wrote:Hi. My name is Motz and I'm a Darkwad.

It's an especially difficult experience when well intentioned people start snapping glow sticks and attaching them to me like they know what's right for me. I dislike it sooo much that I have to do a preemptive strike on myself for some minimal lighting just so I don't get attacked by these glow stick pushing people. It's depressing. People just don't understand us Darkwads. Try walking a mile in our shoes this year on the playa. You never know. It may bring out your hidden inner Darkwad. You may be one of us!

Elorrum wrote:I bring little lights to gift, but haven't offered one to somebody I was just riding by and almost hit, yet. I don't want the confrontation about whether they don't want to be lit, or me saying they need to. Though I do think they need to. One night someone bumped into the back wheel of my trike, and gave me a rash of shit about not lighting it. UM, I had a blinking red light on the seat post, and lights in the spokes, but none were placed on the exact outer edge of the tire... Some folks ARE tripping. so rules vary. I like the light on top of my hat, or pointing to the ground so I am visible, but not blinded. I don't know how other people manage it, but having my headlight on while riding a bike, or walking, just illuminates all the dust motes in front of my face, and makes it hard to focus on where the light is illuminating the ground and areas ahead.

Thats one of the many great things about el wire! Its easy for other people to see, but doesn't really produce enough light to actually illuminate anything else.

Luckily this year we'll have a decent amount of moon light the first few days, and plenty pre-event. By Burn night it should be good and REALLY dark out there of for you darkwads!
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby Simon of the Playa » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:16 am

i am a darkwad, hear me roar....


kiss my fucking ass, light up boy.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby Roberto Dobbisano » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:23 am

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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby leigh8959 » Sat Sep 07, 2013 7:56 pm

I can relate to this post.

Here is my progression as a Darkwad:

2004: covered in glowsticks as a Burning Man virgin. My friends brought lots of them, and we had fun making strange costumes out of them. I hated the waste and the moop... but I joined the rest so I could "fit in". I also had a headlamp at all times and this made me feel safe.

2005/2006: I brought EL wire and green lasers. I felt like I was on the cutting edge of technology. EL wire seemed so cool at the time and I was stoked on building crazy animatronic costumes.

2007: On the Thursday or Friday (I don't recall) I went out into the deep playa and ran out of batteries.... I was alone and completely dark. It was an accident, and it was my first experience as a darkwad. I was forever changed by this experience because, for the first time I perceived the playa a solo entity. It felt tremendously liberating. Suddenly I could see everything so clearly and the sky never looked more beautiful. I could see the little particles of dust in the air, and my peripheral vision was way better. I knew it was wrong, but I really liked it. It was one of my best experiences on the playa that I've ever had. I never realized how annoying blinky lights were! I never realized how much the visual cacophony was affecting me psychologically. I'm not saying people should do this, nor am I suggesting that this is anything other than completely selfish... but what I am saying is that it was awesome.

2009/2010: I brought lights with me, but hardly ever used them. I had become a darkwad. I selfishly roamed the playa with very few (if any) lights at night. No one ever called me a darkwad but I did have a couple people come up to me and in a super condescending way say "oh honey, is it your first burn? you need to get some lights... here have a glowstick". I got mad... I wanted them to see how beautiful the playa was when you could be near other people with no lights on them. Just moonlight and whatnot... everyone looks so beautiful under moonlight. I tried to convince some of these xmas trees that they were missing out. They would, of course, explain to me that I was a hazard and that I was ruining the burn for everyone else. At the time I interpreted their words as "I really like biking around drunk and not paying close attention to where I'm going... and you're ruining my fun". Or worse "I drive an art car and I like to go too fast and I can barely see because there is so much fun fur on the dash". That was my attitude back then. I thought I was right, and it pissed me off that people were trying to socially pressure me into conforming... at Burning Man of all places! That said, I continued to (selfishly) find bliss in being dark. In combination with headphones and earplugs, I had found peace on the playa to enjoy artwork, the desert air, the stars, the company of thinkers and the beauty of looking at elegantly dressed artists under moonlight and nothing else. Sharing experiences with others who intentionally minimized light pollution in the deep playa became a staple for me. When the obnoxious and loud xmas tree art cars would come around to the trash fence, we would roll our eyes as they tried to point out how we were wrong to be so dark. On several nights, when picking up trash from the fence, I found their glowsticks that they had left behind after throwing a massive dance party at the trash fence the night before.

2013: I realized that Burning Man was going to have 70,000 people this year. And a f-load of art cars with virgin drivers who go to fast. I had my girlfriend with me (who was a virgin). I realized... I had to conform to some extent. I had no choice. I truly was making the burn worse for other people... not just irresponsible people who were biking or driving too fast, or driving drunk, or just not paying close attention... I was making it worse for people who were totally sober, driving or biking slow, and worse of all I was setting a bad example for others. I have now found a happy medium. I've come full circle and here's my solution now:
-white flashlight (or headlamp) aimed at the ground directly below me. Narrow beam, not too bright.
-2 small red light on my bike facing to to the back and the front (NOT BLINKING)
-an extra VERY BRIGHT light to be used in really busy areas near the big sound camps and the esplanade (and near the man/temple)

In other words, I've come to my senses. I realize that the "blissful" experiences of a few darkwads is not more important than preventing xmass tree virgin art-car idiots from accidentally killing someone and ruining the festival for everyone. I've conformed and I'm fine with it. I will continue to relate to and encourage other closet darkwads to always have at least a red light on their back and front. Little red lights do not ruin the experience for me... so there is no sense in getting stubborn about it.

Anti-darkwad Nazis: if you really care about getting lights on people don't yell or get mad. Just be polite and try to understand where the "poorly lit" darkwad is coming from. If they have no lights, politely suggest they get three small red lights, one for the front and back and one for their bike. There is no reason to get upset or zealot-like. Nor is there any reason to try to get everyone to conform to your view.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby C.f.M. » Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:41 am

"Anti-darkwad Nazis: if you really care about getting lights on people don't yell or get mad."

For reals. My loaner bike came with no lights. Didn't know. For all the people who thought it would be really helpful to yell "YOU FUCKING IDIOT YOU NEED LIGHTS," it actually would've been helpful if you'd had a light. Because, if I'd had a light, you'd've seen it. If you want to be someone that yells at someone about something they're doing wrong, then be someone who can fix the problem you're yelling about. Otherwise....you're just yelling.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby BBadger » Sun Sep 08, 2013 9:22 am

leigh8959 wrote:Anti-darkwad Nazis: if you really care about getting lights on people don't yell or get mad. Just be polite and try to understand where the "poorly lit" darkwad is coming from. If they have no lights, politely suggest they get three small red lights, one for the front and back and one for their bike. There is no reason to get upset or zealot-like. Nor is there any reason to try to get everyone to conform to your view.


Politeness is nice, but often those (burgin) dark'tards have no concept of bringing lights at all. So even if they're well-informed, they have no supplies to make good on their new-found knowledge. So at the burn I give dark'tards finger-lights to help light them up. Usually this lasts until about Wednesday night, after which time I'm so sick of the shear number of those idiots I encounter that the charm wears off.

But those are the dark'tards I actually happen to see.

The real problem are the dark'tards that I nearly or do crash into. The real playa hazards. Last year (2012), I literally ran into some unlit biking burgin, and the resulting collision bent up the other guy's bike. As this was pre-Thursday, so I was still in a helpful mood, so after we untangled ourselves, I gave him the lighting lecture and pulled off some lights from my bike (I had some extras) and gave him some to fix onto his own. Hopefully, he didn't encounter anyone else in the same way.

But in the majority of dark'tard incidents -- which occur later in the week-- my mind isn't on being polite. Rather I'm trying to skid to a stop or swerve out of the way to avoid some shadow wandering the playa in the night. In those instances I'm cursing their name and wishing for a Dark'tard Thresher mutant vehicle to rid the playa of that plague. This is usually by Thursday night when the real influx of idiots enters the playa.

Maybe along with the swag you get at the gate they could also give people a simple lit-up pendant. Of course I expect that would lead to some MOOP... but at least then people could stay somewhat lit up.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby lemur » Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:13 pm

THE SPEED LIMIT IS 5MPH, ASSHOLE.


slow down, even on yer bike.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby CaffeineGirl » Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:42 pm

There were approximately 48 scheduled burns on open playa this year. Many of them were small structures and did not have crowds around them to serve as a buffer for peds or bikes. I worked perimeter several times, and nothing out there is scarier to me than a really fast unlit bike flying thru a perimeter right as the fire is getting lit. Nobody really wants to clean up toasted darkwad in the morning.
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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby fresh » Sat Sep 21, 2013 10:18 pm

I concur with those who enjoy the power of the dark. If senses are not altered and one stays aware, typically you can steer clear of any biker much less an art car!!!! Really, unless said car has no lights itself and NOT speeding, how can you miss any size vehicle driving around at 5MPH!!! My typical darktard costume involves an orange hunters hoodie which is as close to being lit up without any power or fire....

I say this as that I enjoy it, my minimal setup on the bike last year when neither el wire was working was a simple big torch light you can buy with battery for $5. can zip tie to bike or I just liked holding it and flashing on ground or ahead to watch out for dunes.. That said, later in the week when it does become a shit show, I am more apt to light the fuck up. little led pins necklaces, bike el. but really if you got one string of crappy chinese dim el wire and you think I can see you, think again. it is knowing that you are not lit and behaving as such that keeps you safe. being aware of surroundings is rule #1 have you not seen 2 lit up bikes collide? Yeah.

That said, this year when we had the one major injury at the roller disco, I pulled off my skates and in a frenzy could not find my bike, took a campmates and his super bright LED lights did not turn on. there was one dim head light. I had no lights on me. I went mach speed in my socks from 7:30 and esplinade to 9:00 ems station. Weaving in and out of the playa and esplanade I probably freaked a couple people out, but came nowhere close to any collision In the highest traffic area. I got there in 3 or 4 minutes to get a crew over. Yeah a radio would have been nice.

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Re: I like being a "darkwad"

Postby The CO » Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:12 pm

Everyone has the right to not be lit up and visible.
Everyone has the right to laugh at darkwads when they get hit by bikes or art cars.

If people don't have any sense of self-preservation, that's cool with me.

It's like people in defaultia that say "go ahead and run me over, I have right of way!" when crossing the street. Great, you have right of way. Does that make your crushed pelvis or broken leg more bearable?

I fully support everyone's right to be stupid and increase their own risk.
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