Monday, September 5, 2016

Today in hooligan justice...

I'm dust-covered, hungry and exhausted and back from Burning Man. Yes, I'm one of those grown-ass adults who strings Christmas on his bicycle and rides around a week-long celebration of LED's, flammability and house music. I'd say don't judge, but you've probably already done so and that's ok, I kind of judge myself too.
No really, I have a job and everything.
Owning a phone with a camera doesn't
make you a photographer any more than
wearing a cape makes you Batman.
Usually this is the yearly post where I bore you with photos of my week and you feign interest for a minute before clicking on some other, more interesting blog but not this time. Mostly because I took like zero photos this year. I'd like to say was a philosophical choice. Like, a statement about how we all need to put down the iPhones and enjoy life instead of trying to document ever waking goddamn moment of it. But instead I just didn't feel like taking any. I'm not really a photographer and besides there was nothing there that actual professionals didn't take way better pictures of anyway. Post cards available in the gift shop.

Above: a literal cricket, not to be confused
with the figurative cricket which this is not.
So if I'm not going to subject you to my vacation slides, why the hell am I talking about Burning Man in the first place? Because I read about this when I got home. And look, we're both tired (aren't you?) so I'll just cut to the part where I tell you about the article instead of pretending to get upset about you not clicking on the link. White Ocean, one of the theme camps, got vandalized, which, if you've ever been to Burning Man is actually kind of shocking. Not the hatred of glamping, but the vandalism. Drugs, arson and reckless disregard for personal safety yes, but vandalism? It just not cricket.

What? They work very hard at whatever
the hell it is they do. Like, four, even five
hour-days. Sometimes three days a week.
Explanations may be in order here. Some people who go to this thing organize themselves into theme camps. These camps usually have a schtick, or a thing they offer. Some serve food or drinks, some do art or hold contests. Do you like miso soup? Great, go find Miso Horny. Into having someone photograph your junk and then put them onto a lanyard you can wear around your neck? Genital Portrait Studio has you covered. And some camps, like White Ocean are exclusive super-luxurious virtual hotels for ultra-rich entrepreneurs and tech-people. Yeah, those jerks.

Police are searching every malt-shop
and drive-in in the tri-county area.
It's called glamping as in glamerous camping, and it's kind of gross. Here, we've talked about this before and yes, I totally re-used the cricket joke, leave me alone. Anyway, at an event that still kind of likes to see itself as an experiment in inclusiveness and free expression, rolling up in million-dollar RV's and building yourself a little gated community is bound to piss people off. And piss-off it did. The hooligans who-huh? No, really, the White Ocean Facebook page actually referred to the vandals as hooligans. Why? No idea. I mean, hooligans? For real?

Anyway, the hooligans cut power cords, stole shit and even flooded the place with 200 gallons of water, which, ok, nobody deserves to have their shit wrecked up. Sure, it's natural to be a little jealous of glampers and their hot water, air-conditioning, catering and, I shit-you-not, sherpas, but keep in mind this whole thing is just a party.
Again, just to compare, on the left is White Ocean and on the right: my camp.
Do I want their life? Of course I do, but we had booze and a solar shower, so we did alright.
Above: Another victim of social inequality.
This underprivileged burner can't even afford
the LSD she needs to enjoy a week-long festival.
I mean, the people who trashed White Ocean's camp were also at Burning Man which means they probably had an extra $400 in ticket money sitting around not to mention a job that's totally cool with them taking a week off so it's not like they themselves aren't just a little privileged too. Sure, of course everyone there is coming from their own unique circumstances and financial situation and I'm not sticking up for the people who've made San Francisco an unlivable gentry-hole, but nobody's exactly starving in the streets at Burning Man so fucking up the one percenter's camp isn't so much social justice as it is just just being a dick.

Look we can all agree that the super-rich are a parasitic blight on this world and soon there shall be a reckoning that will make Bastille Day look like a Church picnic, but until then, can't we all relax, put on our ridiculous steam-punk hats and furry vests and dance to terrible electronic music as equals?
So I guess we have that to look forward to...

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