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08/19/2004: "This Is Burning Mom"


pedro (23k image)Brian Doherty, Senior Editor of
Reason
has penned a new book entitled This Is Burning Man (Dude, you
have flames on your site! That is soooo boss!) which, along with
Big Russ and Me, I have no intention to buy.

Big Russ and Me has an interesting subject (A cranky ol' WWII vet
who supports his family by strangling ponies with his bare hands in a
carnival sideshow), but the writing is so sugar coated that the book's
cover now bears a sticker warning that is not to be read by Diabetics.

On the other hand, I'm sure that the writing in This Is Burning Man
is more than competent, it's just the book's subject that I couldn't give a
shit about. (Had Big Russ burst into flames in front of a thousand peyote
munchin' Hippies - now that would be teh best book EVER!)

Don't get me wrong, I'm sure that for a great many people Burning Man is a worthwhile and enriching
experience. Of course, I'm only saying that because two very dear f(r)iends
of mine (Lame in-joke. Sorry.), Alan
and Elizabeth, attend Burning Man
just about every year and I don't want to hurt their feelings by implying
that, for most attendees, it's a just excuse to have sex in the dirt with a
total stranger while on Ecstasy.

[SIDETRACK]

After returning from Burning Man, Alan and Elizabeth often invite Vienna
and I over for a pleasant evening of looking at their photos of the event.
Once, Elizabeth showed me a picture of a giant tent with an entrance shaped
like a female hoo-ha. "What goes on in there?" I inquired.

"Oh, that's a tent in which only women are allowed. Inside, women are
encouraged to explore their bodies in a non-threatening environment."

OK, I don't wanna sound like a misogynist - but I hate all women.

Women control the playing field of sex. Think I'm wrong? If a man wants to
see a naked woman he has to jump through all kinds of either social or
monetary hoops. If a woman wants to see a naked man, all she has to do is
ask. Shit, Luther, a woman who's covered from head-to-toe in scar tissue
could get lucky in a bar at closing time.

That's why, at least to me, a tent full of women "tilling their fields"
while a bunch of horny guys mill around outside is tantamount to a tent
full of Millionaires counting their cash while starving children collapse
from hunger on the other side of the canvas.

[BACK TO THE MAIN TOPIC]

The reason that I couldn't care less about Burning Man is because, growing
up in the 'burbs, I was witness to an annual spectacle that made Burning
Man look like a Promise
Keepers
rally. This was my Dad's Fourth of July Backyard Fireworks
Extravaganza
or - as it came to be known after an unfortunate incident
- Burning Mom.

Each year, on our way back from Disney World (painful tales of my family's
annual visits to "The Happiest Place On Earth" litter this site), we would
stop at the other Disney World - South of the Border - where my younger
sister would eat then vomit up a chili dog (much to the amusement of my
older sister and I. She was like Ol' Faithful. You could set your watch by
how quickly, after she ate a chili dog, she threw it back up - three
minutes exactly), and where my Dad (Big Rod) would purchase several hundred
dollars worth of fireworks.

[Fireworks buying tip: Any firework that depicts a Union soldier getting
his head blown off will produce more than satisfactory results...and
possible deafness.]

Upon returning home, my Dad would store this huge cache of explosives in
the safest place possible - right next to our oil heater - until the Fourth
of July when he would set them off, six or seven at a time, for the
amusement of our beer swilling neighbors.

Now, I've never been to Burning Man, but I know it can't compare to
that.

By the way, this year, Burning Man runs from August 30 through September
6th (roughly the same dates as the Republican National Convention, which
explains Colin Powell's absence in NYC), but I suggest that you skip
Burning Man and go to PadroLand Park instead. An'
tell 'em Big Rod sent you.


Replies: 13 Comments

on Friday, August 20th, billzebub said

Rod, I shit you not, I grew up not half an hour from Pedro's wonderful paradise. (Darlington, SC, to be specific)
I used to Trek there at least anually just to get a view from the giant sombrero and play some mini-golf (Daned shame they closed down Golf of Mexico...where else you gonna putt around various overpriced knick-knacks?)
I tell you that's the best place on earth for cheap fireworks, gut-wrenching cuisine, and nun-chucks and throwing stars that they don't even card you for.

on Friday, August 20th, Nigel Tailwind said

It's been nearly thirty years since I drove past that joint. Do they still have the mileage countdown billboards on the approach? "Fill your trunk with Pedro's junk" if I recall correctly.

on Friday, August 20th, billzebub said

It's "Fill your Trunk with Pedro's Junque" - if I remember correctly. Pic of an elephant on that one. My personal favorite was the one that says "You nevr Sausage a PLace" & "Everyone's a Weiner at Pedro's" under a big fiberglass frankfurter. Also, the upside down sign that says (in a corny Mexican accent:)"Pedro feex later, OK?" underneath it.

on Friday, August 20th, razlerja said

Congrads Rodney! You've got me laughing so hard that I'm actually crying at my desk at work! And, your take on the 'Vagina Tent' is spot on. TESTIFY!!! Can I get an AMEN!

on Friday, August 20th, Rodney said

Teh best SoB sign ever! is the upside-down one with the caption "Sign planned in Washington, D.C. Padro fix later, ok?"

Padro has to be the most un-PC mascot since KFC dropped "Leroy, the white woman raping janitor"

on Friday, August 20th, billzebub said

I'll have to write them all down next time I go to my Mom's house. I pass a good 15 or so of them during the 45 minutes I'm on I-95.

on Friday, August 20th, sully said

Alright, now where is this tent located exactly and where can I find it?

on Friday, August 20th, Pistaugh said

Right next to the MTV Rock The Vote booth and the ClearChannel wigwam.

on Friday, August 20th, billzebub said

Click on my name here and you can see my old band photo which was actually taken at the now-infamous "Pedro's Hotdogs".

The band, Farrt, by the way drew a lot of inspiration from the DM.

on Friday, August 20th, Rodney said

Looks just like a little red "X" to me. But I'm old.

on Friday, August 20th, billzebub said

Hmmmm. I haven't looked at it in a while and it is on a crappy server. Maybe they deleted it. I'll hafta look. Can even get on there while at work.

on Friday, August 20th, Raoul said

Actually, they do still have many of the signs, but they're just a shadow of ther former selves. The old ones were so corny, un-p.c., but relentless (every goddamn mile for HOURS) that you just had to laugh, sometimes from delirium (it was usually around 3am anyway). Then the joke was on you that it was a kinda dump. Now, there are less signs, they're a little less offensive, but bland and corporate-looking too. But I'm happy to say that it's still a huge shit-hole! My kids really wanted ice cream driving up one year, so I thought "how bad could it be?" It was horrible. And it seemed dangerous. And the looks on the faces of other vaca fams was priceless. I think some of them actually feared that they had somehow actually crossed into Mexico and were going to be drugged and raped like Mrs. Vargas in Touch of Evil. But my favorite memory of the place was as a kid one time when I noticed that the South of the Border bumper stickers could be blacked out by employees to spell "out of order". Very convenient, as almost every payphone, gumball machine and mens room fixture was busted.

on Friday, August 20th, billzebub said

Click on my name now. That's the updated version with the hotdog stand.

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