Burner Steals Mansion

Is this an example of Burning Man values spreading around the world – the wrong way?


From the SF Chronicle

Image: Paul Chinn, SF Chronicle

Image: Paul Chinn, SF Chronicle

The vagabond artist and alleged thief at the center of one of San Francisco’s strangest real estate tales admitted Tuesday that he squatted in a historic Presidio Heights mansion for weeks and sold off its pricey paintings, but explained he was claiming ownership of the derelict estate.

“To me, I owned the house,” Jeremiah Kaylor, 39, said from the San Francisco jail, where he was booked Sunday on suspicion of trespassing and burglary. “When I first saw it, I thought to myself, ‘This is it. This is my headquarters. This is my thug mansion.’”

Image: Jeremiah Kaylor/SF Chronicle

Image: Jeremiah Kaylor/SF Chronicle

The three-story, eight-bedroom home — listed on the National Register of Historic Places — was built in 1904 and modeled after the Petit Trianon, a Versailles chateau constructed for French King Louis XV. Cnet founder Halsey Minor bought it for $22 million in 2007 but went bankrupt and never followed through on plans to restore it to glory.

Now it’s listed at just over $17 million, down from $25 million when it first went on the market in 2012. The city has repeatedly declared it abandoned, most recently on Tuesday.

But Kaylor may have been drawn by something else — a rumor that pop star Taylor Swift was considering buying the mansion and fixing it up. Kaylor is obsessed with Swift, in part because her first name and his last name are similar, according to a friend.

Kaylor…stayed at the home for more than two months. His claim of squatter’s rights was countered by San Francisco police officials, who said the intruder stole and sold paintings worth well over $300,000 — most of which were quickly recovered.

Kaylor said he sold the premium stereo system, as well as a Viking stove and some chandeliers, then used the money to travel for a few months before returning to the home two months ago. He said he had spent every night since then at the estate, with the exception of three trips, including one to Burning Man.

Image: Jeremiah Kaylor/SF Chronicle

Image: Jeremiah Kaylor/SF Chronicle

Still in need of cash, he said he began selling artwork to pawn shops in San Francisco and Los Angeles, books to nearby Green Apple Books and other household items, which he brought to the Tenderloin and laid out on a blanket.

Kaylor said he wrote up paperwork saying the property wasn’t being taken care of and he was taking ownership under “adverse possession laws.”

Throughout the interview, Kaylor’s thoughts wandered. He spoke of growing up in Massachusetts, a stint as a heroin addict in his mid-20s and his love for his four children. But he also spoke of fantastical plans, including a 2016 presidential bid. He said he and Swift were destined to end up together.

Image: Jeremiah Kaylor/SF Chronicle

Image: Jeremiah Kaylor/SF Chronicle

Read the rest of the story at the SF Chronicle.

Radical inclusion. Everyone’s welcome, even thieves and squatters.

“Everything’s free”, the bike theft mentality. Grifting, not gifting.”Gift me that immediately!”

#1 Crime of the Summer: and Burning Man is an Accessory

bike moop…so says the Reno Gazette Journal, anyway. Bike theft has become a huge problem in Reno this summer, and Burning Man is getting blamed. Bike theft on the Playa has been a big problem for the last few years, too – even Burning Man acknowledges that. Lock up your bikes, people! Just because there is a culture of Gifting, doesn’t mean that there isn’t also a growing culture of Taking and Entitlement. Bike MOOP is also a growing problem, too, with thousands of bikes being abandoned on the Playa every year.

From the RGJ:


 

Police: Reno bike thefts up; suspected Burning Man link

Bike theft is the No. 1 property crime in Reno’s downtown corridor this summer, police say — and Burning Man could be an accessory.

bike-theftSummer temperatures and more people on bikes play a factor in the theft increase, Reno police Sgt. Dan Thompson said. But he said police sources also indicate there could be a link to Burning Man.

“It’s a timing thing,” Thompson said. “The only time we receive this volume each year is (the weeks) prior to the event,” which begins Aug. 25 and lasts for one week.

Bicycling is the main source of transportation at the event, held on the playa about 100 miles north of Reno.

Kevin Campbell, a Reno Bike Project mechanic, said the number of fliers for stolen bikes at the Reno Bike Project have outpaced those in previous years by a significant amount.

“There’s been a large string of bike thefts this year,” Campbell said. “It is actually really bad.”

Campbell attributed the rise in bike theft to more people riding bikes, whether as a result of the city’s emerging bike culture or favorable weather conditions, he said.

Campbell denied seeing a link between Burning Man and bike theft in Reno, and Burning Man spokesman Jim Graham agreed.

“This is the first I’ve heard of it,” Graham said.

YellowBikesThe Yellow Bike Program, a community bike program providing free-rental use, has been in existence for years to prevent bike theft at Burning Man, and the festival acknowledges the crime is an issue on the playa.

To catch bike thieves in Reno, the downtown enforcement team plants high-end bikes in the downtown district under officer surveillance.

“In year’s past, it has been successful,” Thompson said.

However, no one has taken the bait this year, Thompson said.

Using the right lock, most often a U-lock mounted to a sturdy base, ideally a bike rack, is the best way to combat theft, Campbell and Thompson said.

“Always lock your bike,” Campbell said. “Even if you are just running quickly inside a store, you don’t want to leave the bike unlocked. It takes less than 30 seconds to steal a bike.”

Thompson said people should also keep a record of their bike’s serial number.

 

Hot Wheels: Bike Thieves Beware

by Whatsblem the Pro

Bike-Thief-2

The latest issue of The Jack Rabbit Speaks links to a survey about stolen bicycles:

“Runs With Scissors has a cool project:

“It happens frequently: in the worst situation, you may find yourself exhausted after a party in deep playa – and the bicycle you were planning to ride back on is no where to be found, but a mangled wreck with a broken chain has been left as a sorry replacement. There are stories of people who have bicycles taken from racks in the backs of their camps on the first day and there are stories of people lifting whole clumps of chained bicycles and putting them into trucks.

YOU ARE GOING TO DIE

YOU ARE GOING TO DIE

“The trouble is that I only have stories and I want real statistics. I want to build a map that tells me where the most likely place is for a bicycle to be lost. I want to know what the qualities are of a bicycle is that makes it more likely to disappear.

“If we have enough data points, we can learn when and where we need to protect ourselves and how to prevent this from happening to ourselves. If you have ever had a bicycle disappear, please take the time to fill out the quick survey below.”

Life is so unfair

Life is so unfair

What really interested me about this JRS item was the mention of “people lifting whole clumps of chained bicycles and putting them into trucks.”

While wandering in the deep playa this year, I happened upon two separate caches of perhaps a hundred to two hundred bicycles each. They were mostly high-end steeds, and they were all lying down and locked, some to each other. These big caches of locked bikes weren’t near anything whatsoever; they looked as though they were just waiting for a big rig to pull up and someone to load them in.

It's better exercise than a handbasket

It’s better exercise than a handbasket

It’s undeniable that, after Exodus, a huge number of lost and abandoned bikes remains on the playa, deliberately ditched by departing attendees from far-flung corners of the Earth, or taken for an unauthorized joyride and abandoned, or simply lost and forgotten by their owners in the general frenzy. They’re not typically locked, though, and this wasn’t after Exodus; these caches of mystery bikes were there before the temple burned.

Three hundred used high-end bicycles sold at a cut rate of a hundred dollars each brings in thirty thousand dollars.

Is an organized bike theft ring operating in Black Rock City?

Kentucky Fried Camp’s Packed U-Haul Stolen in the East Bay

by Whatsblem the Pro

The missing truck bears this design, #107 in U-Haul's "Venture Across America" series

The missing truck bears this design, #107 in U-Haul’s “Venture Across America” series

Kentucky Fried Camp, a group of mostly Kentuckians and San Franciscans originally from Kentucky, is a breakfast camp on the 3:00 Plaza whose gingham-clad crew of sixty souls serves fried baloney sandwiches with shots of bourbon, accompanied by compliments delivered via megaphone. KFC also holds an annual race in high heels known as the Whoreshoe Derby, and is planning a cotillion this year featuring Southern belles in electrically-illuminated hoop skirts.

Early this morning, their packed U-Haul truck was stolen, depriving the entire camp of critical gear for their stay on the playa.

“There has been an incredible outpouring of community support,” says Guy Shochat, a representative of the camp. “We already have a free loan of a Mutant Vehicle trailer, which we’ll need, since ours was attached when the truck was stolen. We’re very happy that the art car itself wasn’t on it at the time. We’ve been given a dome, some shade, tents, serving tables, and the equipment we’ll need to run our baloney kitchen. Cool Neon has kindly offered us EL wire at-cost, and a few burners have volunteered cash donations. We are hemorrhaging money buying new shade, water containers, and other necessary supplies. Sadly, our epic outhouse shower is gone, and we still need bicycles, air mattresses, costumes — waaaahh, lost costumes! — and hugs.”

Kentucky Fried Camp hasn’t just been deprived of the things they’ll need to take care of themselves on the playa, continues Shochat. “We give away ridiculous amounts of food and booze every year, without any fundraising. It all comes out of our pockets as internal contributions. This is the first time we’ve ever felt any need to ask for any kind of outside help at all. . . and I must say, the burners are coming through big for us so far. We are being kept very busy with the emergency purchase of things we need, as the money becomes available. Simple contributions like bikes and costumes delivered on playa will really help, and we will return them to you happily after the burn. We are picking up our custom smoked baloney now and breakfast will still happen!”

Shochat goes on to say that the response of the burner community so far has renewed his faith in humanity in general. “I went today from despondent to realizing that there are many more good people out there than bad,” he says with a twinkle in his eye.

The truck, which was parked in the East Bay area near San Francisco before it was apparently hot-wired and stolen, is a 17-foot U-Haul with an auto-transport trailer attached. The design on the side of the truck is U-Haul’s “Venture Across America” #107, which is based on Mississippi wildlife and features a picture of a Mississippi Sandhill Crane, a long-billed bird with a bright red head and white neck feathers. The truck bears Arizona license plate AB-89694.

“We’re struggling right now,” says Mick Jeffries, a compatriot of Shochat’s. “But people are rising to the occasion. Our biggest camp ever, over sixty people coming from both Kentucky and California, has lost everything. Any help spreading the word is most gratefully appreciated.”

If you spot the stolen truck, do not attempt to confront the occupants; assume they are armed and dangerous. Contact local law enforcement! If you tweet, you can also hashtag #KFCtheft to let the Kentucky Fried crew know that you’re on the case.

You can donate to the camp’s relief and make sure they’re out there serving up baloney and booze by sending your PayPal contribution to the KFC general fund at skhendel@gmail.com.