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Category Archives: Nevada

Burning Man (Zach’s Take)

Burning Man,  lets write about it.  Super easy…not.  It’s an experience, a stream of thought, a party that doesn’t end, a desert that is inhumanable.
Thats not what BM is to me.  BM is a group of friends that come once a year every year.  BM is everything you wanted, multiplied by sparkle ponys.  BM is forgetting reality.  BM is letting all of your inhibitions drift away into the dust before anyone notices.  BM is life thrown into the fire and told: Feel something different!  BM is the difference between life and death, between real and reality, between the fake and the unfake. It does exist, you just ask “ Are you a virgin? “ and tell people never ever come back again.  But that’s good.  BM IS NOT FOR EVERYONE!!!!!!!!!!  Please, don’t come because there are too many people already.  BM is drinking Bloody Marys in the morning, not ‘cause you are an alcoholic but because they are there and you want it and you don’t care because you want it.  BM is watching the sun come up over the desert and wondering if it really matters, then watching it go down and realizing that it doesn’t.  BM is not caring that it matters.  BM is not mattering.  You realize that there is another life but this is OUR CITY.  WE BUILT THIS MAN!!!!  And we take pride in it.  You can’t take it away, this feeling.  BM is how life would be without the MAN.  Don’t even try to be without the Man after this.  His is with you and you will never be without.  BM is life. BM is everything we never had.  BM is US – the man, the woman, the itdoesntmattercauseitsburningman.  BM is everything you hate being released from your body.  BM is a shard of life in this world.  BM is you.  The only stop is that hour after you kill him that he is gone and there is nothing left.  But that never lasts and we all have to feel that same pain.  You can be sad but you should pray to the temple that you can take it with you, that you can please, please, please try to take it with you.  I hate going but I love it.  I can’t stop going.  Please don’t let me stop and please don’t let you stop.  The world needs people like us to push the limits and find out where this thing goes.   Let’s push it farther.
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Going Home to Black Rock City

“It’s never too late to have a happy childhood.” -Java Johnny

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Burning Man is so impossible to write about.   Life on the playa is so radically different, full of childhood wonder and fantastical ideas that become reality.  It reminds us that life is art, that giving is good, and that surprises are around every corner.

We found Java Johnny, our favorite old coffee-slinging nonsense-talking character, right in the same spot he was 3 years ago.   (“Attention campers!  If you’re wondering what time is it, I have the time for you.  Get ready to set your clocks!  The time is….THURSDAY!”)   Naked Lady was there too, and so was an awesome couple from Portland who brought a whole box of Voodoo Donuts that stayed fresh enough for the first 2 days.

I met a kid who went to Hofstra University with me and was in the same major a couple years younger than me.  We drank Zach’s homebrewed saison and reminisced about old professors.  “Come to New York,” he told me, “I’ll get you a job.”

On the first day it rained, which never happens.  The playa turned into thick, cement-like mud, which coated our shoes like glue until everyone had a 4-inch platform of mud.  My cheap old boots somehow didn’t attract the mud as much, but Zach and others went around barefoot or wrapped their feet in plastic bags and slid around the neighborhood.  It was fun.

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Our neighbors formed “Camp Let It Go”, a hodgepodge group of Americans, Aussies, and Brits.  They built an amazing multi-level shade structure with hammocks and a fully-stocked bar and DJ setup.  They also built a flower dome, one of those old playground domes covered in twinkly lights and lined with pillows and carpets.  The best part was the top level of their structure, an elastic-rigged hangout lined with sleeping bags and stuffed animals.  We fit a lot of people up there, watching the sunset.  You just had to make sure everything was arranged well enough that no one fell through the straps!  After all, “safety third.”

On Friday there was a dust storm.  It got terrible right when we got to the temple.  The only quiet place on the playa, people kneeled praying, meditating, honoring loved ones, as the dust swirled.  Biking back, you couldn’t see 4 feet in front of you.  I was terrified of getting lost out there, dusty and dried out like a lizard.  We made it back and laughed at how our faces were different colors inside and outside our goggles.

My bike got stolen.  It was right outside our camp on the outskirts, and we were only next door at Camp Let It Go.  Yesterday we got a comment on our blog from the thief.  He must have read the “La Aventura Project” bumper sticker stuck on there.  You can read it under the “Maps” section.  To whoever you are, I’m not that mad about it.  I didn’t want to carry that crappy bike back home anyway.  I just wish you wouldn’t have taken it on Wednesday!  Maybe you’ll keep reading our blog.

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There were more moments, more laughs, more awestuck-staring than I can ever remember properly.  New best friends whose names you’ll never remember.  Swirling stars and subtle realizations that you can’t put into words, but they change who you are.  It’s hard and dirty and difficult and immensely creative.  I hope I’m blessed enough to return.