Kill It With Fire

Kill it With Fire

There is an incredible catharsis to be had in attending The Stranger's annual Valentine's Day Bash. Dan Savage invites the jilted up on stage one at a time and let's them tell their sob story. He then promptly destroys their trinkets and mementos in increasingly hazardous and elaborate ways. Burning with an acetylene blowtorch is popular, I think more people need to embrace the fury of cross-cut shredding and tar and feathering as options to decimate their plush animal dollies.

Then again, destroying things with fire is in our DNA, a remnant of a time tens of thousands of years ago when fire was our first and only tool to change fundamentally the state of things. Hitting something with a rock would break it into smaller pieces of the same thing, sure, but to set it on fire would transform it irrevocably in ways that our meager monkeyminds could not yet decipher. It would take bona fide scienticians with names like Priestly and Maillard to figure out what exactly is going on when we torch something, and they were still several hundred generations into the future.

There is a better than 90% chance that I'll be returning to the event in 2010.

Attendance at all for me was kind of a spontaneous get-up-and-go idea, one hatched while listening to Elvis Costello and swilling wine by myself in the living room (i.e., last year's V-Day plans to the letter). I said to myself, "Hey, doesn't Dan Savage blow shit up this time every year?" Yes. Yes he does.

My personal favorite of the evening was the guy who had Dan torch a Tiffany & Co. silver necklace. Women in the front row were begging to have it, but as it always does, seething hatred persevered and it got the flame and the fire. That, my friends, is dedication. Plus, it served a further purpose in revealing precisely who in the audience was a gold digger. Clever that.

I actually started this entry to discuss something else, but for the life of me I can't think of what it was.

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