Thursday, August 21, 2014

Rich techies take over Burning Man

From today's NY Times (A Line is Drawn in the Desert):

...“Anyone who has been going to Burning Man for the last five years is now seeing things on a level of expense or flash that didn’t exist before,” said Brian Doherty, author of the book This Is Burning Man. “It does have this feeling that, ‘Oh, look, the rich people have moved into my neighborhood.’ It’s gentrifying.”

For those with even more money to squander, there are camps that come with “Sherpas,” who are essentially paid help.

Tyler Hanson, who started going to Burning Man in 1995, decided a couple of years ago to try working as a paid Sherpa at one of these luxury camps. He described the experience this way: Lavish R.V.s are driven in and connected together to create a private forted area, ensuring that no outsiders can get in. The rich are flown in on private planes, then picked up at the Burning Man airport, driven to their camp and served like kings and queens for a week. (Their meals are prepared by teams of chefs, which can include sushi, lobster boils and steak tartare---yes, in the middle of 110-degree heat.)

“Your food, your drugs, your costumes are all handled for you, so all you have to do is show up,” Mr. Hanson said. “In the camp where I was working, there were about 30 Sherpas for 12 attendees”...



At 10:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This speaks volumes about the mentality of wealth in the Bay Area.

At 3:53 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Yes, the rich folks want to be cool and with-it, but they don't want to be uncomfortable or give up their privileges for a minute while doing it.

At 4:39 PM, Anonymous Vince said...

First San Francisco, now Burning Man. My, how the uber-rich have taken over places that were once genuinely lively. Perhaps there's an example from nature that can be applied here:

"But there is one group of parasites that is particularly pernicious...turning their victims into zombies."

Our pop culture is filled with zombies and vampires. Whom does it serve?

At 6:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And you know what the burners all like...

that's right - bicycles.


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