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Forums > Social Discussion > "Firebreather's Lung" or ARDS

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Article moved to here
EDITED_BY: Malcolm (1194320079)


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Fireblitz
SILVER Member since Apr 2005

Fireblitz

member
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Total posts: 186
Posted:I always thought fire breathing was cool and considered trying it. After reading this thread I've decided that I won't EVER try it.

You can only be young once but you can always be immature.

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University, United Kingdo...

Total posts: 1762
Posted: Written by: Doc Lightning


So yes, you can die. You can die quite horribly.




I fire breathe for University events and so far I've had half a dozen people come up to me saying they want to learn. I tell them the above, to read this thread and THEN come back if they still want to learn.

So far 1 person has, and I'm teaching them very slowly and carefully. Everyone else I haven't seen since biggrin

Whether that's a good thing or not...


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:[edit] Hmm, no I'm not split over the subject of firebreathing... It's fascinating, yes and yes, I have been doing it in the past. And yes, yes, yes, I have almost lost a friend who was doing it and met a few people who had accidents and nearly died.



So what's "cool" about doing it, when you KNOW that it's potentially lethal, easy to imitate without safeguards and when you're promoting it by doing it?



Just taken from a recent post:



 Written by: noob

And also, I KNOW FIRE-BREATHING IS DANGEROUS! i am fully aware of the risks, this post is only to find out more about the toxicity of fuels, and any tips i can get on perfecting my newbie Fire Breathing goodness





Is this the necessary disclaimer you have to put up in order to receive tips? I read this over and over again, like yaddayaddayadda "I know ... is dangerous and likely I'm going to at least receive serious harm, but I'm going to do it anyway, so it's up to you to tell me how..." Is this the same cowspoo attempt as worried parents get silenced?



There are three advice I give to ppl attempting firebreathing:



- drink milk before you do it (allegedly the fat prevents reception of the paraffin by the body) and

- use a towel to wipe excess fluid from your face and chest, but foremost

- don't do it anywhere near me, my show and my audience I don't want us to get acquainted even by mistake



Why would we (as the community of fireperformers, with the aim of making it safe to each other and to the general audience) support this trade in any way (and by that prolonging it's existence)?



I'm tired of reading articles like:



"6yr old girl burned to death in fireshow" (like the one in Turkey),

"10 die in nightclub fire after fireshow" (like the one in Russia)...



And then watch the community all go in "shock".



Please note that the articles all talk about a "fireshow" and don't unmistakably specify that some stupid boofheads had firebreathing accidents! It's then up to "us" to start explaining that "NO, it actually has NOT been a FIRESHOW in terms of spinning, but in terms of breathing..." These accidents fall back on the entire fire community and subsequently will contribute to a ban of fireshows (in public areas) even if they don't include firebreathing...



Pls excuse if this comes across as a rant, but isn't it hypocrisy to "officially" oppose it and "inofficially" supply manuals... ??? Because, IF YOU'D REALLY BE FULLY AWARE OF THE RISKS OF FIREBREATHING, you wouldn't friggin do it, right?



Please don't take it personal, but:



 Written by: Intro thread of mentioned noob

I've always been a big pyromaniac (...) ive recently become interested in Fire Breathing, and have been learning over the last two weeks or so. (...) I may be learning some basic Poi from a friend pretty soon, and im looking forward to it.





I understand the fascination of breathing fire, it has the same effect on me, but are we not supporting them in their aim for those 5 minutes of fame, impressing children and promoting this trade?



What they're doing here is to ask us to spread a potentially lethal technique that (on the easy side) ends somewhere like:


















I would love to see the community respond to questions for firebreathing by silently pointing at these videos only, instead of falling for a "helpers syndrome" and "idiot compassion" by supplying informations. Or to put it in other words:



Why are you supporting this in any way?



Isn't it a question of integrity. Not claiming to fully be there myself already, but aiming to get there shortly...



6yr old british girl dies in fireshow



10 die in nightclub after fireshow



So it's not just that they endanger themself by breathing fire, but they're endangering the audience just alike. Thus said, I don't give a ... who trained you and how long you managed to stay alive without any accident:



As I don't want to be the slightest part of it, you won't do it under my supervision/ responsibility, my show and not with my fuel and the logical advice I supply is: DON'T DO IT!



Sounds dogmatic, doesn't it... spank But to me it feels as if I'm just drawing a line for myself. Anyone else is free to do as they like (no judgement, but definitely no validation either)... [/edit]


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Yeah, video #3 reminds me of RULE #1 OF FIREBREATHING:

THOU SHALT NOT BREATHE FIRE WHILE WEARING A BEARD, MUSTACHE, GOATEE, OR ANY OTHER FORM OF FACIAL HAIR THAT EVEN VAGUELY APPROACHES THE MOUTH.

soapbox


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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AmaraO
SILVER Member since Jan 2008

AmaraO

Member
Location: South Of The Swan, West Oz., A...

Total posts: 67
Posted:Tom- I am totally with you.

What about seeing if its possible to have a thread completely dedicated to the 'horror' stories- like those videos, copies of those articles etc? All in one place and link it with Doc's Firebreather Lungs article, and Pele's article, and make it sticky-and well obvious to someone looking up fire breathing information. Show people how devastating these things can be. If they can watch people scream in agony, can read the stories without being touched by them- then sorry- but they deserve their fate. Stupidity is as stupidity does.

And every new kid who comes in wanting to know firebreathing stuff- just send them to that thread.
You've hit the nail on the head. I've seen people be just WAY too stupid with fuels, with fire and putting themselves and others at risk with stupid stunts.
The rule number one of fire breathing should be: locate an EXPERIENCED, INSURED SEASONED FIRE BREATHER if you simply insist on learning. And if you can't find one, or there's not one in your area- then learn all you can (without using fuels/fire itself) until you can find one. Flat out.


You also tilt when you should withdraw, and that is Knightly too. Rest In Peace, Heath.

Proudly Owned By FireTom.

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ferrous
BRONZE Member since Jan 2008

ferrous

member
Location: brisbane, queensland, Australi...

Total posts: 55
Posted:i've been reading this thread with much interest & horror.

personally, i've never even considered fire breathing. i suppose it does look impressive, but fire dancing/spinning impresses me more.

i'm just a newbie with poi, but one day, when i'm much, much, much more experienced, & in the right situation (i.e. with experienced fire spinners around) i'd like to try it with fire.

tell me, though, aside from the fire breather's lung issues & the flame being so close to your face, how is the danger of doing fire spinning any less than that the danger of fire breathing?

all these scary stories make me wonder if even fire spinning is worth the risk.


when i grow up, i want to be a circus freak.

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The_Magnesium_Master


journeyman
Location: Brisbane, Queensland,

Total posts: 97
Posted:Fire spinning is fairly safe from a fire veiwpoint with a staff around 1.1 to 1.5 m long as you can stop spinning it easily and are pricticed in spinning it unlit and use a safe fuel. Poi are worse because they cant be rapidly stoped and can wind up around your body or hit you in the balls with great ease. use a fuel like D60 for low smoke, dont use fire that frequently, do it outside in a slight breeze and smoke will probably not cause you muck harm.



The mist produced doing staff burn offs might well be a different issue and I have not had time to research it. I avoid breathing it at all costs



The most serious risk from staff spinning is to slice yourself across the eyes with the sharp edge of the staff tip or belt yourself in the eye with a wick containing fibregasss particals bound with kevlar. Aviod this by using a staff too long or short to slice you with the tip, keep it high above your head NEVER horizontaly in front of you at head level, and get plenty of practice with padded non fire toys first.



Keep all the safety gear out and most of all NEVER BREATH FIRE AND NEVER PUT FUEL IN YOUR MOUTH



also spin fire someware that the surroundings wont be harmed when you drop a flaming fire toy.



If your still in Brisbane the best person to trust for safety is Gabe (newgabe), the local shafter of fire breathers and those using shellite . Sorry I cant say the current safest spinning events as Ive just got back from a long trip and most of the things have changed or moved since I left.


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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted: Written by: ferrous


tell me, though, aside from the fire breather's lung issues & the flame being so close to your face, how is the danger of doing fire spinning any less than that the danger of fire breathing?



I have *never* heard of anyone winding up in the ICU because of firespinning. Poor fuel handling, sure, but not firespinning. Yeah, you can sustain some nasty burns, especially from the metal, but they generally involve a relatively low percentage of your Total Body Surface Area. And you can live a long and healthy life after a low %TBSA burn.

On the other hand, you cannot live a long and healthy life when you've scarred your lungs.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Maybe that's not their primary focus, Mike... I acknowledge that and understand that withholding useful information of "how to safely breathe fire" might not be the best answer...

Nevertheless:

 Written by: Sethis

I can be told that a plate is hot and touching it will be painful, and I will learn something.

I can burn my hand on said hot plate and I will have learnt something too.

I personally, would prefer someone to tell me the plate is hot and I believe I will learn just as much from them doing so as from burning myself.

(...)

Which child is better off, the child who has burnt his hand, or the one who never will?



Cut a long story as short as possible (I notice my name to be all over the "Discussion" board and it even annoys my self... ubblol )

We tell you it's dangerous, we tell you it's potentially lethal to yourself, you still ignore it - fine, it's YOUR LIFE. But you become a potentially lethal threat to your fellow brothers and sisters and seriously damage the reputation of the fire community...

How can we tolerate that and support you (by supplying informations)? Fine, you're going to do it anyway, with or without our help...

How many firebreathers do know about the dangers involved and the necessary precautions and STILL do it improperly?

(sidenote: Reminds me of a roadsign in Australia: "There is no such thing as safe speeding!")

By the time you breathe fire, i.e. spit a flammable liquid onto a open flame in order to ignite it, you turn yourself into a "human flame thrower". Not too much of a problem, IF you only would use a flammable GAS (and FAR away from anybody)... BUT you're spitting a flammable LIQUID, which might continue to burn when it hits the ground or any other object and (with far HIGHER LIKELIHOOD) set it on fire and you intend to do it in front of an audience.

Here comes the kicker (because my stance does include you take responsibility for your own life): Why do you enjoy breathing fire? Is it the sensation for your SELF? Go ahead, somewhere far away from the crowds.

Oh, but you want to SHARE THE EXPERIENCE with other ppl (who dunno about the danger you put your self and them into)? What's the motivation in that?

YOU ARE PLAYING RUSSIAN ROULETTE WITH THEIR LIVES, the least by showing them the "wow, I certainly can do it too".

Let me quickly recount: out of ALL the firebreathers I have come across in my life, I have noticed only those in a circus to display the necessary precautions. 99% of the amateurs and semi professionals I have experienced are just irresponsible. Most of them just walking up to me, asking for fuel, some of them even spinning with their mouth full of paraffin...

So to close this post: I don't care too much whether you kill your self. If you'd be a friend of mine, I would seriously raise my concerns or/and emotionally detach from you. As you're a "stranger" (i.e. "firend I just haven't met yet") you can do whatever you like - as long as you don't do it in the direction of my family, my friends and my self.

But more you're asking for informations of "how to discredit the community of fireperformers" (in the long run) and potentially endanger your fellow citizens and I will NOT shoot my own leg by passively encouraging you (which I would by supplying the necessary informations under which you "feel safe to breathe fire")

It's just a question of "Karma"... shrug

(disclaimer: this post is not intended to offend anyone and lacks the necessary graemlins to display my positive attitude and caring, read negativity into it, as you like - I assure you, it's only in your mind)


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:And to explain my (meanwhile hostile) opposition to firebreathing and ppl doing it:



My last encounter with a firebreather has been a few months back: I was spinning fire in a ditch on the beach, when this guy thinks it would be a "nice stunt" to breathe fire and involve me in the fireball... so he involves me into his stupidity and irresponsible behaviour by spitting Kerosene over me whilst I was spinning Poi. Meaning I have been covered in Kerosene: Hair, skin, clothing...



This has been the second occasion that a guy just does it without asking for my nod, the first time has been with powder (not as dangerous) a few years back. But madness seems to prevail along with stupidity.



So if YOU only learn from pain, why would this have to include ME (as a victim)? umm


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted:Part of the problem with fire breathing is that it's so easy to learn (relative to achieving a decent standard of poi)- a lot of people learning it are getting inspiration/teaching, not from the fire spinning community, but from individuals who do it as a party stunt.

I do agree with the sentiment that, as fire spinners, we should seriously consider distancing ourselves totally from any form of fire-breathing.

Arguably, fire-breathing is unnconnected with fire-spinning- they do both involve fire, but there the connection ends.

Home-made-fire-throwers also involve fire, but, if someone turned up at a spinning meet with a 10litre plastic tub strapped to their back, belching out 20 ft petrol flames- would they be welcome?

'No', should be the answer (though, having written that out and, having been to some of the fire meets I've been to, I'm not so sure that the reaction would be that negative actually smile )

So, why not the same for fire-breathing?

Then again, there's the other side of this, which is the need to be careful not to demonise everyone who's given out fire-breathing advice.

Some do so with the extremely well-intentioned view that, if a newbie is definitly going to give it a go, then he/she had better get advice off them,than from some drunken party idiot.

While I think there are issues with that approach, there's no denying that the intention is beyond reproach.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted:There's also the need for perspective.

Many here, including me, ahve made the decision to not only not fire-breath ourselves, but to actively discourage others from doing so.

Often, part of the motivation for that is because we personally know of people who've been very badly hurt by a fire breathe going wrong.

But, objectivly speaking, how dangerous (relatively) is fire-breathing?

As far as I know, there are no objective scientific studies/stats on fire-breathing accidents- and there are unlikely to be any in the near future.

So, our personal assessments are based on our own experience. Which is fine- it's a valid way of making a judgement.

But, as I look through my life and take note of the one good friend who fell victim, plus the aquaintance who had long-term lung damage, plus the online accounts of people in this community i.e. several people hurt.

Then reflect on the numbers I know who've been damaged by recreational drug use.

And, I have to conclude that fire-breathing isn't necessarily more dangerous than recreational drug use.

Yes,most recreational drug users suffer minimal damage- then again, most fire-breathers don't end up in intensive care.

Yet, as a community, we oppose fire-breathing, but, generally, are totally fine with drug-use.

I'm not necessarily critisising that, but, it's something to be aware of when ostrasising fire-breathers, cos, from a newbie point of view,there's maybe a discrepency there?

Unless of course, we're going to take the approach of 'fire-breathing is so very dangerous that it's literaly suicide to do it; far more dangerous that anything else you could ever consider'

Which, personally, I wouldn't be up for- to me, honesty and realism are important, cos, if the approach is to demonise, then, where intelligent newbies are concerned, it will have the same counter effect on discouraging fire-breathing, as the govt 'reefer-madness' films had on cannabis use.



To sum up-

I believe fire-breathing is really dangerous

That it's not particularly worth doing

That if, as a community, we can get a consensus to distance ourselves from fire-breathing, then that's OK

That frie-breathing is way more dangerous than fire-spinning

But I'm not sure that it's more dangerous than some other things common in the spinning community, such as recreational drug-use (in terms of the actual proportion of fire-breathers who come a cropper, compared to proportion of drug users)


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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AmaraO
SILVER Member since Jan 2008

AmaraO

Member
Location: South Of The Swan, West Oz., A...

Total posts: 67
Posted:I don't agree with 'Recreational Drug Use' AT ALL. I don't care what it is, and if someone is high around me- and I know it- I will leave their presence immediately-and they will be lucky to get out of it without copping a serve from me.

I think its pretty general to say 'well no one seems to mind people getting high', so how can they complain about people doing stupid human tricks with fuel and fire? I for one am not in any part of that 'general consensus'. Many people say they are okay with it because they know that it doesn't matter what they say- people will still do it, and they feel their words are wasted. Its why people don't speak up against Fire Breathing- but people should speak up.

I'm not against Fire Breathing- I am against people coming to a forum and asking how to do it. It shouldn't be added to the list of stupid risky things you can learn to do off the internet. I believe it is something that can only be taught by a knowledgable, experienced teacher who is fully aware of the risks and dangers, and can convey to the person learning everything they need to minimise the risks as much as possible.

I don't know if my post has a point, but I am stating I am not in approval of drug use in any form but prescribed and carefully monitored by a physician. Call me a fuddy duddy, but I have seen recreational drugs ruin too many lives for it to be okay with me. Including my younger brother- who took a half an XTC tablet with a friend, at the age of nineteen- both he and the young lad he took it with now suffer mental illness. My brother has what they first called 'Drug Induced Schizophrenia' but it has since progressed to Paranoid Scizophrenia mostly. He has nearly died twice. My brother was a promising, wonderful young boy-he could have played Rugby League professionally and it breaks my heart to know that the night he took that filthy drug- my little brother died and was replaced with a scary, strange boy who I don't know anymore. And his life is ruined. He can't work, he can't keep a relationship- my mother has to make sure all his bills are paid, he has no sense of responsibility. He recently thought he was well again- stopped taking is meds,and almost burned his unit block down. Why? He was cold, and wanted to get warm. He had no sense of what damage it could cause- no sense that he could kill people, no sense he was indoors and it was inappropriate. And he took that XTC 6 years ago. He'll never lead a normal life.
You can dribble and tell me a bit of pot never hurt anyone- but I have seen lives ruined by many forms of drugs. From marijuana to heroin, cocaine, xtc, speed, ice...you name it.

Okay- so now my rant has turned into one on drugs- but its a subject that riles me up. Don't assume that everyone feels a certain way until you've asked everyone.

And we should as a community be telling these kids who want to learn to fire breathe to find someone in their community who is experienced, insured, and then leave it up to those people to teach them. Then no one here can be sued by a family who's son or daughter dies when someone told them to do something a certain way and it causes something horrific. Which could be another side effect.

Sorry for the rant- mods- feel free to kill it if needs be.


You also tilt when you should withdraw, and that is Knightly too. Rest In Peace, Heath.

Proudly Owned By FireTom.

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted: Written by: AmaraO


I think its pretty general to say 'well no one seems to mind people getting high', so how can they complain about people doing stupid human tricks with fuel and fire? I for one am not in any part of that 'general consensus'. Many people say they are okay with it because they know that it doesn't matter what they say- people will still do it, and they feel their words are wasted. Its why people don't speak up against Fire Breathing- but people should speak up.



You have just advocated for "abstinence-only education." That is a disproven philosophy for reducing harm.

The only way to effectively engage in harm-reduction is to educate people about the precautions they should take and the risks that they are taking by engaging in a risky activity. They should also know alternatives.

I did not write this article to deprive people of information. I am a strong believer in free will and I will not participate in any paternalistic attempt to withhold valuable information about firebreathing on a fire website.

If this site removes valuable information in an attempt to provide abstinence-only education in regards to firebreathing or any other activity within its scope, I will withdraw any contributions I have made to the site and I will leave. I find abstinence-only education to be unethical, immoral, not in the public interest, and contrary to the Hippocratic Oath.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Okay, let's take your analogy, OWD:

 Written by: noob

I've always been a big boofhead and was smoking and drinking all my life(...) I've recently become interested in tough drugs like Heroin, and have been shooting up over the last two weeks or so. (...) I may be get some pot from a friend pretty soon, and im looking forward to it.

And also, I KNOW HEROIN IS DANGEROUS! I am fully aware of the risks, this post is only to find out more about the toxicity of smack, and any tips I can get on perfecting my newbie pumping goodness.

So please tell me: where can I get good stuff, how can I tell whether it's good stuff or not, how much do I take at a time and how do I make sure to find the vein?



If we would now supply informations, would you approve, Dave?

You're saying that people here on the board are pretty laid back and accepting when it comes to recreational drug abuse... even though this is a vast generalisation, I wonder which drugs you're referring to? Tobacco, alcohol, pot, amphetamines, hallucinogens, cocaine or heroin? (in this order).

If you make the analogy to drug abuse: I know ppl who smoked pot all their lives and lead a "regular life" (i.e. family, kids, steady job, taxpayers, no (drug related) accidents in traffic and physically in average shape. Hence I don't know anyone using Heroin, about who I could say the same... So where we draw the line?

Do we find consensus on the following:

Firespinning is a) toxic to both, the environment and the performer (spray and fumes), it is b) potentially harmful to the performer and the audience (accidents) and only under very extreme conditions it is potentially lethal (spinning indoors without precautions or at a gas station).

Firebreathing is a) toxic as above, b) it is potentially lethal to the performer and c) it is potentially lethal to the audience (pls refer to previous page for the articles supplied). Plus when an accident occurs, it's not specified what kind of fireperformance it is... thus discrediting this community as a whole...

I can't really put spinning and breathing together into the same bucket, just like you. One is not too easy to learn, but it's "safer" - the other one is easy to learn, but it's more dangerous and definitely more harmful to the performer (paraffin in direct contact to soft tissue) - no matter how careful you are. You know people who got seriously harmed, I know people who get seriously harmed, almost everybody who is into the fire community and definitely into firebreathing knows someone who got seriously hurt... Do you know of any spinner ending up in the ICU? I don't.

Firespinning and Firebreathing are both harmful to the environment, to the performer and the audience - on top of it Firebreathing is potentially lethal to the performer and the audience... Why do I appear as a smartass again, by repeating obvious facts?

(Disclaimer: In no way I am demonising anyone giving advice, I am presuming that ppl are not thinking ahead falling for "idiots compassion" (no offence meant to anyone, just using it as a term).

Supplying information DOES NOT EQUAL education - this IMHO is the first intellectual mistake made in this subject.

I fully side AmaraO when she says something like: If someone is interested in firebreathing, point out the risks and dangers involved and direct him to a responsible individual in his area so he can receive (1on1) tuition.

If I take a distinct decision to oppose firebreathing in public (especially when children are present and against ppl who clearly dismiss all precautions) it's a matter of integrity to enforce it. I will and if that means that I pi55 off those on a meeting who are softer in their approach or actively support it, then I will bear the consequences.


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:ubblol Mike: A little knowledge is more dangerous than none... wink

I'm not sure whether this is what AmaraO meant, but I certainly don't say: remove all informations.

When someone opens up the millionth thread about "tell me how to", he'll get asked to do a search, because this question has been asked a million times before. Why not categorically enforce this with firebreathing? Why willingly supply all kinds of informations, when (especially) a noob is pushing the "info please" button? Especially when this question has been asked a million times before?


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Well, given the fact that a user need only type the words "fire breathing" and it pops up as a link with a "warning" symbol next to it, I think this site has a very good handle on the situation.

I, for one, do not wish to change that.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted:Hi Firetom,

Between you and me there are some communication difficulties- I've known this for some time with some of our past discussions on this board.

I'll clarify a couple of things-

1. I agree with you about firebreathing- as I understand it, you don't want it around you and, I don't want it around me

2. I agree with you that it would be nice if the community as a whole faced up to this problem and seriously considered dissasociating fire spinning from fire-breathing (to an extent this is already happening and, as far as I can see, HOP has, amongst spinning communities, been at the forefront of spreading the word about the dangers of firebreathing)

3. Maybe you've misunderstood (or I've not explained fully) the fire breathing/fire spinning thing. I would never imply that fire breathing and spinning are similar, or that the dangers of fire spinning justify fire breathing.

I consider fire breathing to be very, very much more dangerous than fire spinning.

Incidently, thanks for bringing up this issue- your point is good and I'm mainly in agreement with what you say


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted: Written by: AmaraO







I think its pretty general to say 'well no one seems to mind people getting high', so how can they complain about people doing stupid human tricks with fuel and fire? I for one am not in any part of that 'general consensus'. .





Maybe worldwide, it could be a generalisation.



Personally, I've never been to a UK fire spinning meet where there weren't around a third of the attendants smoking weed and the rest had trundled along several packs of lager/beer.



I've never seen a piece if UK juggling club/spinning group publicity that didn't stress that the evenings events would 'of course' end in a pub.



Admittedly, most of it is handled in moderation and causes no problems (other than the obvious promotion of the view that juggling/spinning are inextricably bound with drug use)- occasionally, it does cause a problem.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted: Written by: FireTom


Okay, let's take your analogy, OWD:

 Written by: noob

I've always been a big boofhead and was smoking and drinking all my life(...) I've recently become interested in tough drugs like Heroin, and have been shooting up over the last two weeks or so. (...) I may be get some pot from a friend pretty soon, and im looking forward to it.

And also, I KNOW HEROIN IS DANGEROUS! I am fully aware of the risks, this post is only to find out more about the toxicity of smack, and any tips I can get on perfecting my newbie pumping goodness.

So please tell me: where can I get good stuff, how can I tell whether it's good stuff or not, how much do I take at a time and how do I make sure to find the vein?



If we would now supply informations, would you approve, Dave?

You're saying that people here on the board are pretty laid back and accepting when it comes to recreational drug abuse... even though this is a vast generalisation, I wonder which drugs you're referring to? Tobacco, alcohol, pot, amphetamines, hallucinogens, cocaine or heroin? (in this order).




As I mentioned in my previous post- in the UK meets I've been to, it's not a generalisation- alcahol/weed are always present-maybe worldwide it is a generalisation.

To clarify what i mean by drugs- I'm referring to all recreational drugs, both legal and illegal; primarily it tends to be weed and alcohol.

And the comparison I'm making is with fire-breathing i.e. with both fire-breathing and recreational drug use, most of the time there will be no major problem- but, occasionally, someone will die.

That's why you know a few weed smokers who's lives are fine- similalrly there's plenty of fire breathers who don't get hurt.

But, occasionally,in both fire breathing and drug use; someone gets hurt.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted: Written by: Doc Lightning


 Written by: AmaraO


I think its pretty general to say 'well no one seems to mind people getting high', so how can they complain about people doing stupid human tricks with fuel and fire? I for one am not in any part of that 'general consensus'. Many people say they are okay with it because they know that it doesn't matter what they say- people will still do it, and they feel their words are wasted. Its why people don't speak up against Fire Breathing- but people should speak up.



You have just advocated for "abstinence-only education." That is a disproven philosophy for reducing harm.

The only way to effectively engage in harm-reduction is to educate people about the precautions they should take and the risks that they are taking by engaging in a risky activity. They should also know alternatives.




Personally, I don't see that she advocted 'abstinance-only education'.

Also, what you've just said could be taken as putting down abstinence as a way of dealing with drug-use.

Abstinance certainly can be very effective indeed.

For example, I've abstained from weed and nicotine for seven years with no problems (whereas all the non-abstinence methods failed completely for me).

Also, millions of successful alcoholics have freed themselves using abstinance.

'Abstinance-only' education is, of course, dubious: while abstinence is the best approach for some,others,of course, do better with non-abstinence approaches.

However, given that some organisations preach 'non-abstinence only' approaches, I think it's only fair that other organisations are free to promote 'abstinence only' approaches.

(Usually it is religious groups who prefer 'abstinence-only' and, for some reason, in the UK, it is the NHS who seems to fixate only on non-abstinence approaches (eg with smoking))


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

Delete

onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted: Written by: Doc Lightning







I did not write this article to deprive people of information. I am a strong believer in free will and I will not participate in any paternalistic attempt to withhold valuable information about firebreathing on a fire website.



If this site removes valuable information in an attempt to provide abstinence-only education in regards to firebreathing or any other activity within its scope, I will withdraw any contributions I have made to the site and I will leave. I find abstinence-only education to be unethical, immoral, not in the public interest, and contrary to the Hippocratic Oath.





I think that firetoms analogy is a good thing to reflect on in connection with this-



 Written by: FireTom



Okay, let's take your analogy, OWD:



 Written by: noob

I've always been a big boofhead and was smoking and drinking all my life(...) I've recently become interested in tough drugs like Heroin, and have been shooting up over the last two weeks or so. (...) I may be get some pot from a friend pretty soon, and im looking forward to it.



And also, I KNOW HEROIN IS DANGEROUS! I am fully aware of the risks, this post is only to find out more about the toxicity of smack, and any tips I can get on perfecting my newbie pumping goodness.



So please tell me: where can I get good stuff, how can I tell whether it's good stuff or not, how much do I take at a time and how do I make sure to find the vein?









Presumably,if our aspiring heroin addict posted on HOP asking for info, you wouldn't supply it?



Yet it's OK to do so with firebreathing?



Maybe because of this?



 Written by: Doc Lightning



I will not participate in any paternalistic attempt to withhold valuable information about firebreathing on a fire website.







Yet HOP is not a fire website- it's a poi website.



And, as poi can be done lit, there is a big fire element- but what's the connection with fire-breathing?



The whole point of what firetoms trying to say seems to be that any perceived connection between poi and firebreathing is erroneous.



So, is HOP a poi site, or a fire site?



(Contrary to what I've just said, I have no problem Mike with you posting your info trying to ensure that those who do insiat on fire breathing, can do so as safely as possib;le- there is a balance to be struck here and, IMO, your posted info is not the major problem and, from what I've seen, it's good stuff).


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

Delete

Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted: Written by: onewheeldave


So, is HOP a poi site, or a fire site?




Dualistic thinking.

It's both really. after all Malcolm didn't build the HoP empire by selling socks wink

One can't deny the relationship between poi and fire, nor deny the relationship between any of the toys we discuss here and fire either. I suppose the primary focus was poi but quickly grew to include the obvious connection between poi and staff, and then all the other toys entered the fold. eg fireknife, ropedart.

I suppose a more apropos name might be Home of WooHoo Look at Me!! wink but it just doesn't roll off the tongue as nicely.

Realistically we can't deny the connection between HoP and fire breathing. Denying it as a legitimate form of artistic expression just serves to ease the conscience of the person doing the denying, nothing more. if people are wanting to try this, then they're going to and I see no harm in giving out the correct, factual information about this activity along with the warning about how dangerous it is.

IMO the heroin analogy would only work if this were Home of Pot, or something like that.

So the name on the door may say Home of Poi, but the contents really are Home of Fire Arts. Like it or not.


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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted: Written by: Doc Lightning


On the other hand, you cannot live a long and healthy life when you've scarred your lungs.



I am going to take extreme exception to this statement, thank you very much.
I live a wonderful, healthy life and I have scar tissue in my lungs. I don't get flu shots. I don't have an inhaler I need to carry around nor am I attached to an oxygen tank, and I am told I most likely won't be. Yes there are things that effect my lungs that did not used to and I am still working on that...though avoiding smokers doesn't bother me much. wink
No, not everyone is so fortunate I understand and I thank *insert ambiguous faith figure here* everyday for that blessing.



As for spinning. You know, one of the most overlooked and underconcidered things with fire spinning is that we are standing in the middle of a black cloud of smoke laced with fuel particles, kevlar particles and who knows what else. I would have to say the fire isn't nearly as dangerous as the smoke, as with most things. I'm very curious what the percentages of fire play and asthma developement would be actually.
I did a hug on firemen, without their masks on, and they are the ones who pointed this out to me, as each was somewhat effected by it. It was an excellent lesson for them to be on the other side of the fire (which is why I did it) and not a single one found it pleasant. I learned alot from their perspective and analysis of the experience.

Now, yes, it truly depends on how frequently you spin with fire, but the side effects of cotton mouth, coughing and black boogies tell me it isn't the safest of choices to do either, not in the long run but in the end they are all choices, aren't they?


I see this as a site for circus style arts, fire or not. It may have started as a place for poi only, but I can tell you we took it rapidly from that to including all manner of fire arts (I think HoP was out for a month when that happened).


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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jo_rhymes
SILVER Member since Apr 2005

jo_rhymes

Momma Bear
Location: Telford, Shrops, United Kingdo...

Total posts: 4525
Posted:yeah black bogies... every time i go to London i end up having black bogies.

Hoppers are angels who lift us to our feet when our wings have trouble remembering how to fly.

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AmaraO
SILVER Member since Jan 2008

AmaraO

Member
Location: South Of The Swan, West Oz., A...

Total posts: 67
Posted:Doc- I think you misunderstood me somewhat.

I didn't really see the relevance of the piece you quoted, but I will try to clarify.
I said I believe that Fire Breathing Education is best given one on one with a 'Professional'. I don't believe people (no matter their experience level) telling these kids (which many of them seem to be from my research so far) how to do something in which their life is endangered is particularly smart. Let them know the dangers, tell them to find someone in their area..tell them that while they wait they can by all means practice with water if they are in fact determined to do it.
There has to be a middle ground. People are going to Fire Breathe- and thats the bottom line- but we, as a community need to work out where we draw the line. Do we just put a 'How To' up and resign ourselves to the fact that people are going to do it anyway? I for one certainly hope that those who tell someone (who may or may not have lied about their age on the forum) how to fire breathe, and give them instructions have a good lawyer. Because if someone follows someone's instructions and ends up hurt- a quick check will reveal your name, address- and you could face a lawsuit.
And I just think a standard answer such as 'Find someone near you to teach you, and whatever you do, please- for your safety and that of others- Do Not Use Fuels of any sort- practice solely with water until you locate someone to help you. It is NOT safe to learn by yourself.' would suffice, and a link to the warnings thread.
I believe in abstinence- I'd rather be abstinent than dead thinking I know everything. Maybe wisdom comes with age.
I hope these kids grow up to get some.


You also tilt when you should withdraw, and that is Knightly too. Rest In Peace, Heath.

Proudly Owned By FireTom.

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted: Written by: Stout




Realistically we can't deny the connection between HoP and fire breathing. ...................

........So the name on the door may say Home of Poi, but the contents really are Home of Fire Arts. Like it or not.



....I'm not so sure- isn't that exactly what is being discussed in this thread, post-firetoms post?

HOP definitly is about poi- poi are in the name, there's subboards discussing poi moves,poi making etc.

Fire poi are obviously a variety of poi, so fire poi are one aspect of HOP (though not, IMO, the main one).

As are staff (again, with subboard on staff, staff being sold in the HOP shop etc).

Juggling? Less so- same with contact (juggling), unicycling, kendama...etc, etc- no dedicated sub board, but a catch-all 'other toys' section.

Where fire-breathing is concerned- historically, there's always been a keeness amongst many fire-breathers to be seen as closely connected with the arts of spinning (poi/staff etc).

And, there's always been a contingent of fire-breathers keen to be perceived as being covered by HOP.

In the early days I recall extremely aggressive posting by a hardcore of fire-breathing supporters who would be very attacking towards anyone who posted amything suggesting that there were issues with fire-breathing.

Similalrly, there was a minority of pro-drug supporters, which, again, tended to be very aggressive towards anyone who posted negative points concerning recreational drug use.

That's changed considerably over the years, with Malcolm specifically barring pro-drug propaganda.

And, with fire-breathing, it is now, not only safe to post the negatives of firebreathing, but, there's a feel that, on the whole, HOP takes a pretty critical stance towards fire-breathing.

One indication of this is that newbies looking for advice do tend to now stress that they've read the safety FAQs,that they do realise that HOP considers firebreathing to be highly dangerous- also by the fact that many firebreathers have flounced off and,sometimes,post quite negative things about HOP (on other boards), implying that it's a place for wusses.

Personally, I'm very happy about those changes (concerning drugs and fire-breathing).

When it comes to the local UK spinning scene- despite their (IMO) unfortunate continuance to promote recreational drug use as part of the scene- when it comes to fire-breathing- that has become very scarce- I can't remember the last time I saw a fire-breather at a local spin.

IMO, that's very good- I don't want to be associated with,or in the same place as, fire-breathing.

Firetom seems to be saying the same thing- I suspect that many other spinners feel the same.

i.e. that fire-breathing really has nothing to do with spinning and, any past historical associations, were based on a confusion.

So, actually, I'm quite happy to stick my neck out and deny any strong connection between HOP and fire-breathing,or between spinning and fire-breathing.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

Delete

onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield, United Kingdom

Total posts: 3252
Posted: Written by: Pele



As for spinning. You know, one of the most overlooked and underconcidered things with fire spinning is that we are standing in the middle of a black cloud of smoke laced with fuel particles, kevlar particles and who knows what else. I would have to say the fire isn't nearly as dangerous as the smoke..................

Now, yes, it truly depends on how frequently you spin with fire, but the side effects of cotton mouth, coughing and black boogies tell me it isn't the safest of choices to do either, not in the long run but in the end they are all choices, aren't they?





That's very true.

Once again, having done a rare fire gig which involved quite a lot of emmisions (multiple spins and using big fire ropes) I woke up the next day with flu/cold-like symptons, which persisted for several days.

That's happened too many times after fire-spins, for me to deny that I've aquired some kind of sensitivity to paraffin fumes.

Undoubtedly made worse by the fact that the only fire-poi I use these days are fire-ropes, which throw off a lot more fumes.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:OWD...Do you figure it's firebreathers who were firebreathers first and trying to associate themselves with the spinning art / I suppose, but in my experience it's been spinners who want to "up their game", so to speak. I really haven't had much exposure to firebreathers IRL, a member of our troupe thought he'd get into it, tried it a few times, and now refuses to participate in it. Something happened, and he won't talk about it.

IMO HoP does take a critical view of fire breathing, this is a good thing and anybody coming here to research the topic is instantly going to me made aware of that.

I wasn't aware of the firebreather contingent wanting to be covered by HoP. I can only guess what that means. Might these be spinners who want approval for their fire arts skill as a whole, rather than breathers only looking of affirmation.

Shame about the breathers posting negative things about HoP on other boards. I wasn't aware of that.

Come to think of it, I can't remember the last time I saw a breather at a local spin either. Whenever the topic does come up at a local spin, somebody always brings up the story of "this firebreathing idiot" who lit his face on fire a few years ago during an impromptu performance downtown. The accident was caught on a security camera and turned over to the local news. We always use that story to try and discourage breathing at our local meets as we really, really don't want them to get shut down.

Yea, recreational drug use at meets. I can't say I'm all that fussed about the pot smokers, more worried about the drunks and the people who are on other, weird drugs that cause them to do strange things like stand motionless without any toys right in the middle of the spinning area and not even flinch when you turn toward them with burning toys.

As far as I can tell, most local spinners are involved in the party scene and view our wednesday night sessions as more of a mini festival than anything else.


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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted: Written by: Pele


 Written by: Doc Lightning


On the other hand, you cannot live a long and healthy life when you've scarred your lungs.



I am going to take extreme exception to this statement, thank you very much.



Pele, you are young, healthy, and ultimately amazingly lucky. Your lungs are not horribly scarred. But I've seen some scarred lungs and it's horrible. They die slow, suffocating deaths over many years.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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