trilobyte wrote:Based on the videos and anecdotes and our own personal experiences, what ideas do we have and what can we suggest to the Org and to these camps (again, in general) to help them integrate into the ways of Burning Man? If you feel they're doing it all wrong, what constructive ideas do you have to help them turn things around and do things right?
While walking around BRC last year, it struck me how the way camps end up grouping so closely echoes the state of the default world. The presence of the theme camp gives a distinctly urban feel to a street, areas farthest away from theme camps have that more neighborhood like feel, and the walk in camping area is clearly some place out in the boonies for men with long beards and ladies who are really
good at canning. And, like default world cities, usually the outgoing and connected end up in the urban areas, the loners and chilled out types end up in the rural areas, and designers and engineers in the suburbs.
My partner and I ended up on 8:30 and I, which is kind of close to the action, we had our neighborhood bar, a coffee shop and a tea house, but lots of folks camping out in small groups with a couple of tents of a trailer. It was a whole lot like the small suburb areas that are located close to city centers but not in the middle of downtown. It was also hilariously similar to where we choose to live in the default world and we really liked living there, even though it had it's problems, we had to really negotiate for our campsite, like suburbs the defaultia, suburbs in BRC tend not to make the most efficient use of space. We liked the theme camp areas too, but found them to be very impersonal.
So my point is that if BRC is getting so big that it's starting to bear strong resemblance to the urban to rural living range in the default world, then maybe it's time to talk city planning. Treat the people who organize PnP camps and the theme camp organizers (I say to include the theme camps in this as well because there is some overlap between PnP and theme camp, as discussed) like large urban developers and work with them to create a good feel in the downtown areas. Have a discussion about living styles, their pros and cons, and make it as much about finding creative solutions to living arrangements in defaultia as finding ways to make BRC better. Fuck, this place is a creative civic planner's wet dream.
And also, while having this discussion, talk about how living in BRC relates to the ten principals, talk both to the people planning the PnP camps and the people buying in to PnP camps. Make it bad business to just plop down a ring of stocked portables or RV's without putting some thought into it.
Edit: I think it would also be good to consider PnP camps to be a separate category to theme camps, and find ways to support the PnP in order to incentivize them to declare themselves and work with the BMorg. A part of the PnP organizing should include the acculturation of clients, if theme camps do art, performance or services, then the PnP project should be socially engineering non-burners into burners.