The Yahoo Factor: Close the Gates Early

Questions, answers, tips & tricks for newbies and veterans alike
XS
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Location: Los Angeles, SFV

Got to Pass the Test!

Post by XS » Fri Sep 10, 2004 9:58 am

How about submitting a 500 word essay on "why I would be a good burner", like the DMV process. Then we could all learn a secret handshake. Those who don't pass the test don't get a ticket, don't get to learn the secret handshake. Those who don't know the handshake get booted, and fined up to $1000.00 and denied entry into the Kingdom of Heaven.

Ok I know this is a flippant response, and probably not immediately helpful. But I agree that education is the only acceptable non-violent path. I did notice way too many observers, 'DARKWADS' with zero illumination asserting their rights of way. I thought about gifting blinky stuff next year, but how many thousands of extra blinky things can one gift to ensure darkwards don't become deadweeds.

"Read your ticket" I keep hearing. Then I read about illiteracy at an all time high. We have yet to address the frat boy attitudes, rudeness, gropers, moopers, poopers, piss ants and butt heads. If education is to save our community. We have much work to do.
Too much is never enough.

Hotspur
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Joined: Tue Sep 02, 2003 6:40 pm

Post by Hotspur » Fri Sep 10, 2004 12:17 pm

I always bring blinkies to gift, but at least three times I almost had a collision with an unlit biker. (When I'm on my bike, I always have at least four lights on -- headlamp, front blinky, back glowstick, and a wheelspike glow or blinky). I got plenty of glares from people who were going faster than I was unlit -- and these people didn't stick around long enough for me to give them a blinky.

Unlit bikes lying on the playa are almost (but not quite) as bad. I barely missed a couple of them (particularly on temple burn night, when there was a lot less ambient city light). Putting a blinky on your bike not only reduces the risk of somebody riding (or driving!) over it, but it really helps you find your bike, too!

Some of these people are going to be seriously hurt, which is a shame. I only hope they don't take more responsible burners down with them.

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pokiedot
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Joined: Tue Sep 02, 2003 6:33 pm
Location: san francisco, ca

Post by pokiedot » Fri Sep 10, 2004 12:52 pm

stuart wrote:no worries man. I am sure some of our patrons did the same shitty thing to you guys. It bums me out but I guess it is just a part of being on the esplanade.
sadly this was part of being in center camp as well. it really bummed me out, too. even worse, people would leave their cafe cups, which have thier names on them. so i was constantly picking up cups and screaming 'thanks for the trash, eve!', or 'you left your cup, jim!'

sigh. pack it out, people.

Tafkah
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Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2003 10:54 pm

Post by Tafkah » Fri Sep 10, 2004 5:35 pm

Personally, I think the benefits of closing the gates early far outweigh the negatives. And I strongly suspect that most of the veteran burners who can't be there until Friday will somehow find a way to get there Thursday.

But we'll never get everyone to agree to a rule change like this on this forum. The only way it will happen, is if Bmorg decides to do it. I would be interested to see a poll.

Why not ask the question on the main page (BRC Polls)
http://www.burningman.com/polls/index.html

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Badger
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Location: San Francisco

Post by Badger » Fri Sep 10, 2004 6:23 pm

But we'll never get everyone to agree to a rule change like this on this forum. The only way it will happen, is if Bmorg decides to do it. I would be interested to see a poll
Seriously, fuck polls. That's just so much pissing in the wind. I'd suggest you submit your concerns and suggestions to the BM project and don't accept silence as an answer. The changes that take place throughout the year are often driven by submissions of ideas and suggestions that often arise when you have voiced your concerns about a facet of the event that one would like to see changed, added or discarded.
Desert dogs drink deep.

greeterdan
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Burning Since: 1998
Camp Name: BLD
Location: San Francisco
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Confused by Behavior

Post by greeterdan » Fri Sep 10, 2004 11:57 pm

I'm weighing in here, because this thread brought up some questions in my mind, and I didn't want to start a whole new thread.

Just for context, 2004 was my 7th Burn. I think I have a pretty good sense of what goes on in BRC. I'm sure I still have a lot to learn, but...

First...I agree that it's a good idea that those on bikes are better off lit. I actually found myself on my bike at night a few times this year without any light...But I always made a point to scan for everything. Never had a problem at all. If I'd been f---ed up, it would have been different, but if I were to do that, and I'm not saying I do, I'd be on foot.

Actually, the one that really confused me was on Sunday night after the Temple Burn....We were walking up 6:30 from Esplanade and an art car came up behind us. We moved aside, finally, and the folks on the art car yelled at us: You guys have to have lights, we couldn't see you!!! We yelled back, Hey, man, that's YOUR responsibility - you've got the art car, you've got to have strong enough lights to see everyone in front of you. We were on foot. We have no such responsibility.

They yelled back...Hey, READ YOUR TICKET...you have to be lit up.

yells. more yells. Anger. It was so odd.

Has anyone ever heard of something like this? I mean...I'm part of the DMV, and there is no question: Art cars take the onus of responsibility for illumination and safey. I've NEVER heard of requiring pedestrians to light themselves. Not that it's not a good idea, but a REQUIREMENT? Huh?

Also...I was greeting Friday morning early and RobbiDobb came out to the Greeters and told us there was a systematic pattern of sabotaging the toilets. Someone was trying to end the event. This was a shock to me. I was so sad. As greeters, we tell everyone to not throw trash in the toilets, but actual sabotage? So...we started telling veteran Burners to keep an eye out for anything like this. There was no point, I thought, in telling newbies to watch for saboteurs. I just kept on telling newbies not to moop the toilets. Same as always.

And on Monday morning...as the city was emptying out...I went to my local port-a-potty. It had just been cleaned. I used it and just as I was leaving, I noticed a flash of red inside. I peered in, and lo! There was a big red plastic bottle inside.

I went outside and ran after the nearest JOTS truck and told them that I was sorry to tell them this, but that the portapotty had a bottle in it. They were really nice about it. I was surprised. I expected anger.

Anyway...yeah, the trash on the playa was awful this year. One night we went out and on the way back - I had no trash bag with me - I ended up with two arms full of trash. Close to camp, I found the oddest moop of all. A green piece of paper with "20" in all eight corners. How odd. "Ice is on us!!" I shouted.

- I think closing the gate early is not practical. As much as it would be nice to keep the Yahoos out, I don't think there's any way to do it. Raise the prices - the rich Yahoos will show up. Close the gate on Friday, they'll show up on Thursday. What can we do? BRC is an evolving city.

The best bet is to have organized Newbie Education. I don't know how to do it. My wife and I - who combined volunteered 72 hours of our playa time this year greeting, at the DMV and being Real World Greeters - have talked about making an "Unofficial Newbie's Guide to Burning Man" and having the Greeters hand it out next year.

But lacking something like that, I really think that education is the key. I've found over my 7 years on the playa that BRC's problems ease as the city educates itself and its residents. Greeters do the best they can to let people in on what's going on. But it's also up to everyone else who is aware of the problems as they go.

Someone above mentioned watching some frat boy drop a beer can in the middle of the road, and not knowing what to do. Well, jeez! It seems to me that Burning Man depends on the person who sees that happen picking up the can and going up to the offender and saying, excuse me, but our city operates on a Leave No Trace ideal, and it's really important for you to understand that and take your can. If people are grumbling about the problem and not being willing to accept their responsibility (in this case, educating the frat boy), how can we hope to evolve those newbies/frat boys.

I mean, when I was a newbie in 1998 I didn't have a fucking clue what I was doing. I arrived on the Green Tortoise, didn't understand that there were no garbage cans, and didn't even realize that the point was for me to go into theme camps and talk to people. If people like me circa 1998 get no education, how can they become veteran Burners who volunteer, de-moop their camps inch by inch and talk to newcomers?

We all bear the responsibility for what our beloved city is/becomes.

Greeter Dan
Temple of the Gospel of Platypus Love

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HughMungus
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Location: Dallas, TX

Post by HughMungus » Sat Sep 11, 2004 9:30 am

oddconvergence wrote:Burning Man LLC, the business, would be at odds with closing the gates too early as a company needs to make money or at the very least cover expenses.

And salaries for the officers could be a part of those expenses.
Then I guess all that stuff about Burning Man being a community is wrong (?)
It's what you make it.

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HughMungus
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Location: Dallas, TX

Re: Got to Pass the Test!

Post by HughMungus » Sat Sep 11, 2004 9:32 am

XS wrote:education is the only acceptable non-violent path
If they're coming only for the weekend, they're unlikely to give a crap about "education". Believe it or not, some people ARE just assholes who will never "get it".
It's what you make it.

jlpc4004
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Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 6:53 pm
Location: cali

Post by jlpc4004 » Sat Sep 11, 2004 9:59 am

I think the only way to rid BRC of the yahoos and frat boys is to stop allowing in the PRESS. I can't tell you how many calls I've gotten in the last three days from family and friends who "saw it on CNN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal or Wild On (E channel.) " I mean where do you think they hear about this?

Excellent Idea!! Press makes it look like the world's biggest party (I've actually read that somewhere) they call it a "bachannal" (however the hell you spell it) and if you look in Webster's for the definition, it states "a drunken, orgy type fest" named after some god who was a party animal of sorts. Every time I come back, the first question I get from people is "did you get laid?" And I gotta keep telling them that's not what I go there for, why would I drive 500 miles for that when I could get laid right here at home???? Gimme a break, please.

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HughMungus
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Post by HughMungus » Sat Sep 11, 2004 10:13 am

jlpc4004 wrote:I think the only way to rid BRC of the yahoos and frat boys is to stop allowing in the PRESS. I can't tell you how many calls I've gotten in the last three days from family and friends who "saw it on CNN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal or Wild On (E channel.) " I mean where do you think they hear about this?

Excellent Idea!! Press makes it look like the world's biggest party (I've actually read that somewhere) they call it a "bachannal" (however the hell you spell it) and if you look in Webster's for the definition, it states "a drunken, orgy type fest" named after some god who was a party animal of sorts. Every time I come back, the first question I get from people is "did you get laid?" And I gotta keep telling them that's not what I go there for, why would I drive 500 miles for that when I could get laid right here at home???? Gimme a break, please.
Great idea. We don't need the press anymore, there are plenty of documentaries and documentation in images, etc., by professionals. Get rid of the press/cameras so people feel more free to be themselves without worrying about it appearing on the internet somewhere.
It's what you make it.

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