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Britt ++
Level 1: 10 points
Alltime Score: 3126 points
Last Logged In: March 26th, 2010
BADGE: Journey To The End Of The Night BADGE: The Sweet Cheat Gone BADGE: Dispatch Challenge Winner


250 + 1077 points

Bus Stop Seating Conversion by Britt ++, Cameron, SNORLAX, Orion

September 15th, 2006 1:40 PM

INSTRUCTIONS: Using a mechanism of your choosing, convert bus stop seating into a comfortable bench. Maybe, with pillows? Be aware that it is illegal to damage, deface or post private notices on a bus stop shelter in San Francisco. Information leading to the arrest/prosecution of anyone engaging in these types of activities can bag you a $1000 reward from Viacom Outdoor.


8/25/07 - NEW VIDEO

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The Documentary, in two parts.
Available courtesy of YouTube
Part the first
Part the second



DAY 1 Tuesday

I began the long hunt for a suitable candidate for the bus stop conversion task. I ran around the city for hours taking measurements, examining the different MUNI structures, and brainstorming. As with many tasks, it must have been a strange sight, some weirdo standing on top of a ladder with measuring tape at 1 AM.


DAY 2 Wednesday

I began the long scavenger hunt for materials. I "found" a nice magazine receptacle that someone had ever so carelessly "left" on the sidewalk for me. I cleaned it up and painted over most of the markings. I got a huge sheet and some rope that we used to make curtains, a pokemon poster, random crap. I finally got a chance to use some of the enormous collection of random electronics that I have been hoarding for years. After that, I finished my muni shelter hunt. Again some weird guy poking around the top of a MUNI shelter in the early AM hours.

DAY 3 Thursday, The Big Day

After work, I began constructing a soundboard for the muni shelter.


I gathered more crap and left to meet up with the others. It turned out great. Look at the videos, look at the pictures. I put in a lot of my favorite mixes that I've made and few others that have inspired me. I thought it was so neat that a MUNI shelter had house music 24-7 (with a strobe light too!!).

DAY 4 Friday, The day after

My grandma lives close enough to the improved muni shelter, so after visiting, I stopped by for a look. Some lady was enjoying it thoroughly while waiting for the bus. People had eaten some of the snacks and water and the music was still going. I'd call this one a success
Final Product


A lovely place to wait
Orion:It was cold and the citizens of San Francisco had no comfortable place to rest while waiting for a bus…or waiting through the night. A few hours of planning (and a trip to Goodwill) later and all that was about to change. Though I’m still fond of Britt’s joking idea to turn a bus shelter into a working foundry (complete with anvil and a bellows to keep the fire warm), we were still able to heat things up with Lowteck’s ingenious music rigging and some warm “dorm inspired” decorations like throw rugs, flowers, posters, and a Horn of Plenty full of fruits and crackers. There’s even a strobe light. We were a bit wary of the police car that kept looping around…but I figured that, given a few minutes in our cozy shelter, even an officer of the law would turn down the $1000 fine offered to turn us in. I was quite adamant that all advertising needed to be covered, as a responsible BartPA member, but I’m afraid the only way to get this sort of kick-ass public seating installed city-wide would be through some sort of corporate sponsorship. Either that, or we’d have to spend many a cold night ourselves doing the deed…which might not be a bad idea.
Discussing the Pro's and Con's of Kucinich's platform...
Cameron: Unbelievable. Orion, Britt, and I thought we were such rockstars for bringing two endtables, a rug, some pillows and assorted knickknackery. Lowteck brought a 5 disc cd player, speakers and a strobe light. Mounted to a board pefectly measure to fit in the eaves of a bus stop.

Amazing. Like Britt said: Lowteck don't fuck around.

I was most pleased by people's reactions. The few people who wandered by last night seemed shocked, but were still grinning as they stared at us working. The ones we could talk too seemed to appreciate the idea, but were stunned by it's existence.

The next morning, I came back to drop of some more magazines. To my great suprise, everything was as it was. Some food had been taken from the dispenser, and some new magazines had been added(!) to the magazine rack.

Best of all was the small crowd gathered out front. As I approached to drop of the new magazines; they slowly drifted away, but when I first pulled up, there were two smiling young guys taking camera-phone pictures and a half dozen other commuters staring from across the street.
Don't that look nice...

Like the fellow in the video said: "It'd be great if it caught on."

(If you get tempted to call the police for that 1000$ reward, don't bother. We didn't damage, deface, or destroy; and like Orion said, a Johnny Law drove by thricefoldishly. He seemed to get that we were up to the good kind of shennanigans, and the setup was all there the next day. )

+ larger

Final Product
A Sad and Unimproved stop
Looking in the back of Lowteck's Car...
Holy Crap!
The Goods
Setting UP
The Supplies
Pillow Placers
Wiring is fun.
Lowteck knows what's up
Lowteck ANGRY!
Orion is helping
Bus Passes...
...we try...
... to look natural
Coming together!
The food dispenser
Plants and Posters
Almsot there...
It's curtains for Britt!
Orion eats a Banana
A lovely place to wait
Happy but tired...
Look at that awesome rug.
GQ Britt
Setting it Free
Discussing the Pro's and Con's of Kucinich's platform...
And then realizing we were tired.
Don't that look nice...
The 2 remaining posters
Unplugged Soundboard

73 vote(s)

Favorite of:


urbanspaces, shplank, everyoneshouldsee

25 comment(s)

(no subject)
posted by Aaron on September 15th, 2006 2:16 PM

Rock on.

(no subject)
posted by anna one on September 15th, 2006 2:59 PM

that's brilliant.

(no subject)
posted by alice gray on September 15th, 2006 3:09 PM

dedicated. insane.

MSP actually does have heated bus shelters in some spots. Then again, it's northern.

howard the duck?!
posted by mock piratey turtle on September 15th, 2006 3:31 PM

you guys are my heroes.

Howard the Duck!
posted by Cameron on September 15th, 2006 3:37 PM

We had a choice between:

Howard the Duck
Batteries Not Included
Enemy Mine

I feel like we chose wisely.

(no subject)
posted by Orion on September 15th, 2006 3:41 PM

There was really no going wrong with the posters we had to choose from. The house music, though, really made my night...Lowteck rules.

(no subject)
posted by Shazbot [TKC] on September 15th, 2006 4:35 PM

awesome just awesome

(no subject)
posted by Britt ++ on September 15th, 2006 6:33 PM

Lowteck really made this task with the strobe light and the house music!

It doesn't look like many people ate the bananas or drank the water in the morning shot. :/

(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on September 15th, 2006 7:04 PM

Thank you all for the feed back.

I just went back to visit it an hour ago and I see Cam there.
Everything is still there. In that 20 minutes or so, people were stopping their cars to take pictures. People have been slowly drinking the water, eating the bananas, etc. and someone had put in a fresh crop of new magazines. The response was better than we could have ever hoped.

(no subject)
posted by Ian Kizu-Blair on September 15th, 2006 7:13 PM

Wow, unbelievable. I can't believe I'm not there to see it in person. Anyone in SF should take an hour to visit.

Maybe it'll survive until I get back... save it for us poor, rain-soaked temporary New Yorkers.

(no subject)
posted by la flaneuse on September 15th, 2006 9:24 PM

I love this! (Damn, now my fantasies of being able to one day complete this task have to be ratcheted up quite a bit.... ) I wish I could vote for you twice.

(no subject)
posted by Sara Johnsen on September 16th, 2006 11:00 AM

pure genius.

Check In?
posted by Cameron on September 16th, 2006 1:05 PM

I'm out of town for the weekend, and cannot check on our little abode...

Any news? Everything still there? Does the food need to be replenished?

It's on 46th and Noriega, if anyone is interested.

RE: Check in?
posted by Britt ++ on September 16th, 2006 3:36 PM

I am having new tires put on my car. As soon as this is done I'll head over and have a look.

Alas, it is no more.
posted by Britt ++ on September 16th, 2006 5:39 PM

I stopped by about 1/2 an hour ago and the stop had been dismantled. The Cocoon and Dennis Kucinich posters were still up but everything else had been removed. The soundbaord and CD players were still there but it was unplugged and the speakers had been removed.

(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on September 16th, 2006 6:06 PM

it was there at around midnight or so that sucks

(no subject)
posted by Orion on September 16th, 2006 6:37 PM

As Lowteck says, it was there late last night. I stopped by after work and the MUSIC was still going and everything. Oh, well, nothing lasts forever...especially public art.

Alas! +2
posted by Cameron on September 16th, 2006 7:40 PM

Well, in honor of it's unfortunate demise, I have one final tale to tell:

Yesterday evening, I stopped by for the third time that day. There were two young thuggish ne'er-do-wells staring at the shelter in ecstatic shock. I approached them, and pretended to know nothing. They were shouting in shock at the CD player that they just discovered.

"What the fuck!" the first hooligan exclaimed, "who would do this?"

"Seriously, this is nicer than my house..." said the second rapscallion.

At this point the first miscreant moved a pillow on the bench to climb up and observe the electronics. He moved each piece, examining it, and describing it to his fellow reprobate. Then, he gently and gingerly put it all back into place, stepped down, and returned the pillow to it's original place.

He turned the volume up on the speakers and began to hop around in the street, hooting and bouncing to the now too-loud music. I took my leave at this point and watched from my parked car a block or so away.

The two scamps danced and hopped in the enclosure for the next ten minutes until the bus arrived. I got our of my car, intent on returning the volume to it's previous level, when I saw more thugs approaching.

Fortunately, these scoundrel were Lowteck and Company, also coming to tend to our public garden of comfort. We decided that it would be best to then turn the volume and bass down to reasonable levels, and then remove the knobs... Fortunately Lowteck carries a Leatherman. Of course.

After that display of reverence by the two streetwise urchins previously, I half expected the whole thing to last for weeks. Hell, I had plans for a little Pirate Radio...

Oh well. Temporariness is the way of all Public Art. I really enjoyed preparing it and seeing people's reactions, which were far more enthusiastic than I'd hoped.

(no subject)
posted by space bug on September 20th, 2006 11:33 PM

I don't know what I'm doing with all these votes. Clearly, you needed another one.

posted by r0ck c4ndy on September 23rd, 2006 11:24 PM

that story is the greates part, and is the kind of thing I believe in but never get to see. This task is so well done I can hardly stand it. Seriously, it totally rules, and In my heart I'm positive it was 'THE MAN' who took your installation down.

(no subject)
posted by Mandu on September 25th, 2006 5:59 PM

I seriously love this and I want to do it in Chicago. I need a friend here to join BART.

I don't know why I didn't vote for this before +1
posted by Jason 7au on February 8th, 2007 10:28 PM

I mean, jesus, it's brilliant.

(no subject)
posted by Murdoc on June 24th, 2007 1:46 AM

This is awesome. If only I would have been lucky enough to have stumbled upon this stop.

I know I stumbled upon this before…
posted by Blue on August 25th, 2007 12:37 PM

I wonder why I did not vote???

Hey now that you can embed video you should just chuck it on thies page

(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on August 25th, 2007 1:22 PM

new video added AND embedded