Paragraphs to ponder

The popularity of private-plane travel is forcing many high-priced camps, where seven-week sessions can easily cost more than $10,000, to balance the habits of their parents against the ethos of simplicity the camps spend the summer promoting.

Kyle Courtiss, whose family runs Camp Vega in Maine, said that his staff was trained “to be cognizant of stuff like that” and that private planes were “not what this camp is about.”

The article is interesting throughout.


The funniest line was the end:

She now sends her children to camp in Europe.

I'm still wondering, was the reporter serious or was he joking.

Why read the Times when you can read the Onion?


If you are already at an exclusive private camp, you've already crossed the Rubicon on "simplicity".

"One flier has already requested a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a fruit cup with a single strawberry, a juice box, a banana and a cookie or brownie. "

And God help you if we find a brown M&M

I actually heard an interview about the brown M&M bit. It turns out it was put in there for a very practical reason that had nothing to do with brown M&Ms.

The show, on tour (Van Halen if I recall) was incredibly complicated, and required a lot of logistics to go off correctly and safely. These got put into the rider. The rider was *huge*. So they stuck the brown M&M into the rider as a canary in the coal mine. If they walked into their dressing room and found brown M&Ms... they knew the venue was playing fast and loose with the rider requirements, and most of those requirements were truly needful to have the show go off with no one getting injured.

quadrupole beat me to it, so I'll just add that there's a more extensive discussion of Van Halen's tour rider and the reasoning behind it in Atul Gawande's "The Checklist Manifesto".

Interestingly enough, this was the same explanation God gave when asked why he told the Jews not to wear a linen/cotton blend.

There is also another reason for putting odd things in a rider.

A band I worked for would put several odd items in their rider that where typically ignored (usually technical stage requirements), in order to have an exit out of their contract with the promoter. If they needed to cancel a show, they would say it was because the promoter didn't meet the his requirements.

where seven-week sessions can easily cost more than $10,000 = NOT simplicity

“not what this camp is about.” - seems that for $10,000 it's about very wealthy people's kids hobnobbing and pretending they are 'simple people'

I don't quite see how private planes are more against the ethos of seven-week camping sessions costing over $10,000, at least not more than flying there commercially. (This may be because I've never flown privately).

I think it's the Mile-High Club merit badge they receive at unboarding.

Was that supposed to be a disturbing comment? The Mile-High Club has 2 meanings to me, neither of which come to mind based on this article, especially given the subjects' age range.

Dan, I bet you are a blast at parties...

If I don't get mauled by at least a black bear I want my money back.

"The rich are different form us."

"Yes, they have more money."

this kind of consideration was standard at similar camps/retreats in south america as far back as the late 80s...definitely earlier.

the south american social model marches on y' on the list: if u aint got it already, get ur private security.

Comments for this post are closed