Good what in the world are they doing?!

A typical Flash Mob pillow fight.

A typical Flash Mob pillow fight.

If you’ve ever seen or been a part of a performance art piece, you may know that not all performance art is well, spectacular. Once, I went to sort of a performance art variety show and about 15 or so acts, some as individual performers, others in a group, took turns on the stage. It was a hodge-podge of weirdness. Me and my partner decided to burn poetry chapbooks on the stage, page by page. We had this blowtorch and a big metal trashcan and lit a page on fire and watched as it flipped down, alight, into the can where a puddle of water sizzled it out. We did this to music, I think, maybe Devo. Anyway, it wasn’t a Laurie Anderson masterpiece, but it did cause a lot of horrified gasping, even from a bunch of freaky artists. It’s not nice to burn books.

Flash Mobs are kind of like that. A group of people congregate in a public place, perform an unusual act, briefly — then disperse into the crowd. So when I heard the Boise Flash Mob was having a little fun last Saturday, Oct. 17 at the Saturday market, I was, all Tina Fey, like: I want to go there. The BFM, by the way, is a group of performance artists who get together on occasion and stage a very public performance art piece — once they assembled downtown and at the stroke of noon or whatever, grabbed pillows from under their shirts and had a little downtown pillow fight. Another time it was a high noon at the water gun shootin’ cafe.

This time, it was some sort of group method acting piece, I think. I got a lot of it on my little Flip video cam, but you won’t get to see the umbrella twirling or the last part, when they were looking towards the sun and someone said THEY’RE ZOMBIES and my audience mate called out: PHOTOSYNTHESIS! PHOTOSYNTHESIS!

That was my favorite part.

But the rest is all here for you to see. My unsolicited advice to the ‘Mob: Shorter and sweeter. Make it like a dance. As a matter of fact, make it like a Micheal Jackson video dance. Following our own BFM is a video from a similarly bent Seattle performance troupe doing it the MJ way as a tribute to the king of pop.

Enjoy. And keep your lighters away from your books, they are precious, oh, so precious these days.


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