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my annual really long post about burning man (caution: swears, bitching, !!!s) - adventures of a red-headed stepchild in the house of love
mermaid on the mic
djmermaid
djmermaid
my annual really long post about burning man (caution: swears, bitching, !!!s)
so... year #13 for me. I had some superloaf and some suck - as always.

the best part was getting to spend a week goofing off with my awesome man! we also saw a ton of our stuff out there - very gratifying.

we pulled out of Oakland later than planned. after being up late packing it just would not have been a good idea to hit the road without some sleep. at our first stop we met up with some other burners including a friend of Jovino's - a lovely surprise (and they told us about an all-you-can-eat sushi place in Reno!) om nom nom!

I drove us over the pass and almost before we knew it we were in Wadsworth. Jovino took the backroads portion of the drive and we were in line by around 2pm. the line crawled along and we chilled out in the van, listening to music and slowly creeping forward. a dust storm blew in, and the line stopped completely. deciding to make the best of things, Jovino climbed up on top on the van and brought down beer from the cooler we had strapped up top. ahh, much better! as the dust storm wore on, he distributed most of what we had in the cooler to folks waiting in line, and people started getting out of their cars and interacting. it was actually fun!

eventually they reopened the gates and we rolled into camp as the sun was going down. I crawled along trying to find my way to gigsville. oops, we passed it. best head up towards the center and loop back. this strategy lead to us rolling along the 'nade (srsly, I have ALWAYS wanted to drive on on the 'nade) and right through the Gigsville gate, blasting none other than Lynrd Skynyrd (good choice, dj robo-shuffle.) FINALLY!

Jovino was exhausted from the long day but managed to put up the tent before curling up in the van for a nap. I made up our bed, tucked him in, and went off to say hi to folks. it's always a bit overwhelming arriving somewhere with so many friends but it also made me really happy. I got lots of hugs and felt really welcome. Connie-Lynn gave me my caution tape so of course I had to wrap our tent in it, for Jovino to see when he awoke. also got a ride on Barzilla out to the man and back, and saw first-hand the ridiculous base from the postcard (somehow I'd been secretly hoping they wouldn't actually DO that...) although I have to say that part of the secret to why I continue enjoying the event so much is that I really Do Not Care *what* the org does, so long as it manages to reasonably competently run the event. I don't go for the man-burn, I go for a reunion with friends and quality time with my bunny.

the next day I felt sickly and out of it all day, despite drinking water like it was going out of style. I was delighted to get my decks of cards, (and OMG AWESOME! I got a special thrill when I saw that the photo of Barzilla was from last year's Monday Last Art Standing tour - and that Jovino and I were in it!) but was too miserable to hang out for very long at the lovely party Nici and Chris and Danetta had in the saloon. Jovino and I'd promised to dj for JB and Dale's (of dragondebris) anniversary party and I somehow managed to get my ass dressed and out of camp. we made it over to their place, only to discover they didn't have CDJs. d'oh!

some nice folks with a 1927 Model-T Ford pulling a decorated wagon were parked out front and agreed to haul us all the way home and back again with our rig, but after riding with them for a ways we decided that maybe it was too late after all and we should just go back and hang out. in the meantime I'd mentioned that I'd always wanted to ride in a Model T and so they graciously insisted that I go up and hop into the car itself. what a thrill! they wanted to know how long I'd been into old cars and I managed to explain to them that I just think old tech is cool. they were lovely folks, from Ventura. the clutch on the T was really weird. it would seem like it was just about to stall out and then it'd go. and of course it had that fabulous horn!

the party was lovely and we saw a number of friends. I only wished I wasn't feeling so shitty. back in camp, I finally managed to eat something, then took a flexerl for my aching shoulder and fell asleep. in the morning I was a new woman! I'd slept for hours and finally felt acclimatized. it's never taken me so long before.

wednesday was a truly great day on the playa! in the morning, we sipped delicious cocktails and hopped onto the Diner for a ride out to the *clean* poo huts out in the deep playa. we cruised around checking out the art and stumbled across one of the best finds of the year - the Morning Wood - Best Bar on the Playa!

Morning Wood - photo by Dave Le
(photo by Dave Le)

this was like your favorite low-key neighborhood bar, out in the deep playa. the peeps running the place were awesome - and they had only one rule: Use the Door! we wound up returning there every morning for the rest of the event, and bringing them a HYOOGE bottle of Jack (which had been gifted to Jovino for spinning) and then, on their last morning out there, fresh pizza. I sure do hope they are there next time!

later on Wednesday was the Gigsville Prom ("A Night to Regret"). I'd arranged to DJ, and I wound up regretting that! :-P

I grabbed the CDs of fun CnW and bluegrass music I'd collected for the occasion, and put on a saucy little outfit. the girls were starting to gather in their "madam" drag of corsets and bustle skirts (we were doing a western saloon, after all. we even had a taxidermy bison head!) well, it turns out that the ONE thing they DIDN'T want to theme in their saloon was the fucking prom music. too bad no one mentioned that beforehand!

the organizers huddled together, whispering, with worried expressions. finally during about my third track they sent the most diplomatic one over to me to tell me they didn't like what I was playing - they wanted "prom music" so people could dance. "what do you mean by 'prom music'?" "prom music!" "like, '80s?" "yeah!" ok. so.

I flipped through my cases to see what I had, but I really didn't have much in that vein. so I threw on "Don't Stop Believing" (the de facto anthem of Gigsville, and also a bit of snark on my part, I admit.) they cheered, completely missing the sarcasm. (Jovino noticed, of course, and came over to investigate.) I put on another classic rock track - and then the power went down. everyone looked (but nobody moved) as I came out asking someone to please put gas in the genny.

really I wanted to Go. The Fuck. Away. but I couldn't just walk off or god knows who would be back there messing with my gear so I just tried to keep going. fortunately another DJ friend came along and when he heard my tale of woe, offered to go get his CDs and relieve me. thank you Patrick! I've never been in such a hurry to leave a party. and so I basically missed teh entire prom.

which was sort of a bummer because it was the big social event of the village. but, as soon as we left camp, things began to look up. first, we came across a group of people dressed in silver dancing to disco music (good disco!) they were from Jellyfish camp and they had an amazing art car with all these rainbow LED lights on top. they were letting people control the lights with a touch screen - SUPER cool. we'd have followed them back to their party, but Jovino had a gig at Lustre camp's Glitterbox club and we didn't want to be late. he tag-teamed with Jeremy aka Lord Kook (a good friend of ours) for over 5 hours of super phat electro. it was AWESOME! the place was packed (outside too) and the crowd was eating out of their hands! I danced my ass off and had a great time. they are a really great tag-team and it was a blast and a half!

the next few days start to blur together. I slept a lot, napping in the afternoon too. it was really hot. hanging out with friends was awesome, the morning Diner ride always a hilight of the day. it was IMPOSSIBLE to ride bikes so we didn't get out as much as we would have otherwise. the benefit to this was a lot more time with our favorite campmates. who needs to get out?

on Thursday, after leaving the Morning Wood, we stopped at the Temple. I got out my giant hot pink marker and wrote "like fuck - Alleycat RIP - love M" and felt so sad. I miss her so much! I went back to sit on the ground in the shade of the Diner and have a little cry. Jovino came and found me, and we had a really good talk about love and loss and mourning. I said "I am FUCKING SICK of writing on this FUCKING TEMPLE - but it never fucking goes away, does it. it only gets worse! I'm going to be doing this FOREVER!" Jovino said that I should write that, so I did, just the first part. it made me feel a bit better.

then, as I was walking back, a bus rolled up, while someone loudly held forth over a bullhorn about how "this is the temple - it is made of all recycled materials which they collected from people. I gave them some beer bottle caps, so *I* am a part of it!"

I snapped.

I felt like a fucking monkey in a zoo! I also felt totally disrespected. I walked up and began chastising them for failing to respect the PURPOSE of the art - the legitimate GRIEF and intense emotions that people experience there. have your art tour, but keep it out of earshot of the *participants* please! why not do the talking from a respectful distance, then park and walk up to have a closer look?

admittedly I was very upset and not as eloquent as I'd have liked to be. unfortunately, many of the folks on this bus chose the asshole response, hooting and mocking me. the bus was being followed by the Slug, with MotA at the wheel. he got out, came and gave me a hug, and told me they were just assholes, not worth dealing with, and that they just didn't get it. as he and Jovino walked away with me, the monkeys on the bus shouted "BOO HOO" and "YOU SUCK". awesome.

talking about it in camp later, Jovino said that he saw some of the people on the bus did seem to be listening and to get what I was saying. he also said he was proud of me for speaking up. that made me feel better about losing it like that. it just hurts so much already, and to be treated so rudely and obnoxiously at such a difficult and personally intense moment was more than I could take. after talking about it I felt better - I think it was the right thing and if even a few people got it it was worth it. I'm going to check in with friends who work DMV and the Artery to see if it's possible to remind people touring the art to be respectful of the temple (and other sacred spaces) as having a purpose and meaning beyond just something nifty to look at.

(I've also had the experience of being at the temple during a deeply personal moment when a party bus pulled up playing "Free Fallin'" on it's brilliantly clear PA, and having that be exactly the right thing at the moment - it's not like I want *silence* - just RESPECT.)

Thursday was also the BLD cocktail party, which I showed up early for since they changed the start time. I still managed to see a lot of folks, and to deliver the memorial boards for Jeff and Frank. I hugged friends, scarfed delicious grilled cheese, and passed around a postcard (of a ridiculous clown) for folks to sign for the Piptoads. (I heard today that they already got it!) it was great to see folks and I really wished the BLD and Gigsville were closer together as it was so hard to get around, and there is a lot of crossover between the two.

Thursday night I was scheduled to spin disco at the Glitterbox (Lustre camp.) I was barely able to get myself up from my disco nap to get there! when I walked in I discovered that they were doing a goth night - how to transition? I put something on and did a few mixes I knew would work, and finally got going and hit my groove. most of the goths left, of course, but I drew a smallish but enthusiastic crowd, and several people came up to say they loved disco, or that they were glad to have an alternative to all the trance and electro out there, and I even got a few cheers. one woman came up and thanked me effusively and said goodbye - then stuck around for several more tracks until I took off my headphones at the end. now that's a compliment! and so I managed to do one of four planned-for sets.

also Thursday night Jovino was scheduled at Jub Jub's Plastic Circus - a massive and very well put together camp just past Lustre. they had top of the line gear, a huge, well decorated tent (with a catering kitchen in the back) - and very few partiers. sadly, the previous DJ had gotten too drunk and wandered off, so the place was empty when Jovino went on at 3. eventually a few folks drifted in, but the party never gelled. I chatted with people from the camp and also met a very friendly and intelligent deputy Sheriff who I had a great conversation with. he asked how long I'd been going and was impressed when I said "since '96," commenting that he'd been 20 then. he said he was from around Reno but came out to work the event, and really loved it (this was his second time, he said his partner was a virgin). I asked if they'd made him ring the bell - duh, of course they didn't come in through the gate! he said "oh THAT'S what the bell ringing is" and told me he was going to drive out there tomorrow and make his partner ring it. random encounters like this can be so great. (I also give the camp big ups for being friendly with LE - VERY smart!)

Jovino finished up his set and we walked out to see the sunrise, then over to center camp for coffee. who should we find working the early shift but Justin Winokur (in his Swedish construction worker coat, even.) we chatted (I broke his brain, LOL!) and then went on our way.

Friday we mostly spent hanging around camp, talking and laughing with our rad friends. *this* is a big part of why I love being at burning man - time to have all those really silly or obscure or weird conversations (and weather that permits little else, at least during the day.) I think this was also the day we closed off the Esplanade with our GIGSVILLE FUCK OFF caution tape. whee! I crashed out fairly early and slept all night.

Saturday arrived and with it, our last chance for a morning Diner jaunt out to the 'Wood. we made and brought pizzas, admired their collection of polaroids of other patrons, and said how much we'd miss the place til next time. this time the Open Carry came along, and on the way back I got to sit up top! what a great ride. we also wrapped Opulent Village with the gigsville caution tape! we did it all ninja style, cutting the tape into sections ahead of time so that a bunch of us could run up and do it quickly. I hope someone got photos!

Saturday passed in a flash. Piph and Chris came over and hung out, which I really appreciated since I see them so rarely. when it started to cool off in the afternoon I went into the tent to lie down for a bit. a dust storm started up so I just hid out and napped off and on in there. people were hanging out outside, but it was sooo cozy in the tent. I could see dust coming through the tent walls, it was insane. Jovino joined me and hours later (as he still slept) I woke up and realized they were about to torch the man. no way was I getting out of a warm bed for that! I hear it was all "crude awakening" style with big 'splosions. cool.

Sunday is the Sabbath and that meant the Blacker Sabbath Pancake Breakfast!!! Eva and Jovino made about a bazillion pnackaes and we played Sabbath (off the Skynyrd guys' ipods, heh!) loudly, of course. they even built a ramp of doom (and boy was it rickety looking! amazingly, I saw a guy pop right over it on a mountain bike.)

after giving out the last of the pancakes (which took something like 27 seconds on the 'nade) I switched the music over to cnw and bluegrass on random and we kicked back in the shade at the Spider. good times, that afternoon.

I also did not go out for the temple burn. all of the village art cars had been dissassembled and I didn't feel the necessity of walking all the way out there. instead we had a quiet evening. I busted out the vac-sealed deli lasagne I'd been saving all week in my cold cooler, and OM NOM NOM!

Monday was camp teardown. I was shocked to realize that so few people had stuck around for this - a lot less than last year. Vanessa had done some picking up in the bar (despite not even camping in Gigsville) the day before, but other than that next to nothing had really been done since Nici cleaned up and restocked after her party on Tuesday. it was a pit.

well, nothing to do but get to it (after cooking up a fabulous breakfast of tri-tip in the CBQ natch). I started sorting trash and recyclables, packing leftover booze into empty coolers etc. Jovino took down the shade almost all singlehandedly. a few folks did come up and help eventually. fortunately the weather had turned cooler - a huge help for cleanup and teardown.

time for our break: the annual Monday Last Art Standing tour on Barzilla. as last year, this was AWESOME! I <3 Barzilla. they have a cooler system made from the A/C unit of a car which freezes cans of beer to the side of the cooler in like 20 minutes. in the desert!

we came back, finished packing, packed most of our stuff, and gathered around a campfire built by Amani (who is freakin' AWESOME, BTW, in case you were wondering.) CBQ had been closed off and hosed down earlier. it was a delicious last night on the playa and I loved the calm yet still festive atmosphere.

in the morning, even Amani's adorable pink vintage trailer was gone. we packed up, loaded the van, and prepared to hit the road. before we set out for Reno we were to drive the Cheshire Cat van to it's parking place out near the 80 acres. well, Jovino drove the cat van (a '70s van with a wide frame welded to it and a bunch of stuff on top) and I followed. the direx were a little vague but we finally found the place. the owner of the ranch was a really nice guy, and we chatted about a variety of things for some time before getting down to business and parking the Cat. then it was off to Reno!

we checked into the glamorous Peppermill (aka the "Burner Ritz-Carlton") and immediately cleaned up - joy! next, we decided to go out for sushi, and in the lobby we ran into several friends who told us about a nearby all-you-can-eat place - WIN! while we were talking to them, someone came up who'd bought a shrug from us and enthused about how much he loved it. that was so awesome! I love hearing from happy bunnywarez wearers. we saw so much more of our stuff on the playa too. my favorite was on Sunday morning, watching someone pick up one rainbow legwarmer and stick it into a compartment on the side of an RV. we giggled. I think this might have been at that rad Jellyfish camp, even.

so we pampered and entertained ourselves in Reno (I'm afraid I'm developing something of a fondness for bad tuesday night casino bar bands). saw a few more friends and had a happily uneventful drive home.

sometimes it amazes me how worked up some people get about what burning man is or isn't or what it should or shouldn't be. it is what it is, and overall I have a great time and get to do and see things I normally wouldn't, and spend time with friends in a creative and fun atmosphere. and it IS the Company Picnic after all!

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26 smooches or Gimme Some Love!
Comments
graham14 From: graham14 Date: September 5th, 2008 12:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Great recap...I've gotta get mine written but I'm still processing a few things.

As always it was great to see you and Jovino out there.

See you at Twigs?
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 5th, 2008 06:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
it was (as always) awesome to see you and 'Stina!

we will DEFINITELY be at Twigs. I also want to talk to you about how to arrange DJ time with the DFTs... since I do not think I will be taking part in plans for another gigs-bar any time soon...
veleda From: veleda Date: September 5th, 2008 02:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
yay. That sounds like a quite good burn.

Company picnic, indeed!
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 5th, 2008 06:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
it was a good one! how was your camp? I never figured out how to find you...
chainboy From: chainboy Date: September 5th, 2008 03:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you for taking care of the Cat for me. I apologize and had no intention of it being dropped into your lap as those who had stated that they were going to take care of it had obviously not done as they had stated. As semi-guilty I feel for having to leave Saturday morning and not being able to do my portion of work, I know that my decision to take care of the family matters I had at home were paramount in my life.

Thank you very much for taking on that burden, you did not deserve it to be laid upon you. I would like to know the chain of events that led it into your hands, though, as I may have to rip some people a new one for their lack of effort.
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 5th, 2008 06:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
no problem - we <3 the Cat!

I'm not sure of the chain of events, but Jovino said the new Mayors were looking for someone to drive it over to the ranch and he volunteered.

see you soon!
From: clynne Date: September 5th, 2008 04:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
I could hear your voice when I was reading that, and it made me miss you guys. I loved spending so much time with you this year.
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 5th, 2008 06:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
aww, and likewise! let us know how we can halp, yo.
slinxxx From: slinxxx Date: September 5th, 2008 05:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
I understand that this is your perception, since you've posted it a couple of times now....but the reality is...I or Nici was in that bar every morning picking up cigarette butts and beer cans and empty booze bottles, and maynonaise packets,filling up trash bags with trash/recycling and restocking the bar with fresh booze. every morning. and every night it got trashed again....it's a bar...on the esplanade...it happens. I'm sorry you felt that you had to take on too big a chunk of teardown....


>Monday was camp teardown. I was shocked to realize that so few people had >stuck around for this - a lot less than last year. Vanessa had done some >picking up in the bar (despite not even camping in Gigsville) the day >before, but other than that nothing had really been done since Nici cleaned >up and restocked after her party on Tuesday. it was a pit.
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 5th, 2008 06:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
well... from where I was standing (ie camped right next to the bar) I saw the mess growing bigger and bigger every day, and the only maintenance I saw seemed to focus on the big cooler behind the bar (draining or adding ice.) which was kinda pointless considering how little actual use the bar saw.

after the mayo packets (AWESOME idea, BTW - guess I should have tossed them into the CBQ like I wanted to when I first saw them) appeared, they gradually spread throughout the bar, getting increasingly worse every day. the bar got messier and messier, and very rarely did I see anyone back there picking up, or paying the least attention to anything after the prom. I did some tidying up myself, but it was so depressing looking at the growing piles of trash (rapidly gathering dust) and the empty bar that I could only do so much, especially with no help from anyone.

frankly, the reason the bar got trashed was because it was never TENDED! and for that matter, I mostly only saw people going in there to fill their own cups - besides prom/stripping night and Nici's party, there was a real dearth of events.

also, you can't deny that there was NO post-event cleanup plan - and because of that, Jovino and I (and Seth, and you and Terry) got left holding the bag, with very little help from anyone else. hell, most of the time no one was around at all! or if they were, they were randoms who'd wandered in.

personally, the bar was my biggest disappointment of the year. there were all these way overblown plans and then the reality was that no one wanted to spend time running the place, so most of the time it just sat there collecting trash. bummer!

I do recognize that you (and others) put a TON of work into getting it there, and trying to realizw the ambitious plans that had been made for the structure - but then there was little on-playa follow-through, and mostly it was an empty (or underutilized) structure. which really sucks considering how much effort went into planning, prepping, and setting up.

also, I was in MANY esplanade bars throughout the week which WERE clean and well-run, even very late at night. being on the 'nade is NO excuse. all it takes is peeps to run the place, and be there. for all we did with the BSS, we might as well have just had our events at the DFTs.

we were inexcusably amateurish and we really should not have taken so much on, with so few people. there was NO bartender schedule, few events, and no cleanup. I'm sorry if this does not jibe with *your* perceptions - I'm just spelling out my own personal experiences.

gigsville has a well-known tendency to be lazy and sloppy, and to pull shit off anyway. I suppose that is what happened here.

but, yes, I *DO* resent having been stuck with the bulk of clean-up efforts, with barely a "thanks" from anyone (hell, how could they say thanks, when they'd all left the day before?)!
amacker From: amacker Date: September 5th, 2008 08:27 pm (UTC) (Link)

Company Picnic ...SNARF!

ahhh the dust is still on my car.I would just keep it there if it wouldn't EAT MY FUCKING CAR!

I loved the part about your righteous freakout at the Temple! Go GiRRL! AllyCat would have approved... And thank god some FKOs were there to ground you out with a hug.

Next year I gotta get yer schedule so i can see all these shindigs i missed, (like JB and Dale, damnit!)while hanging out with my favorite Old Codger and his Squirrel. (They both left with mange.) Can't take some people *anywhere* !
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 5th, 2008 08:54 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Company Picnic ...SNARF!

thanks, Amacker. I appreciate it! it was really REALLY hard, and yet I know I had to do it. sometimes it's just like that.

JB and Dale's anniversary party is every year on Tuesday night in their camp, and it's always a good one.

see you soon! (October?)
t_h_squirrel From: t_h_squirrel Date: September 6th, 2008 09:01 am (UTC) (Link)
That was a long post! Was it hot out there? Never been to that event.
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 8th, 2008 04:02 am (UTC) (Link)
it is RIDICULOUSLY hot! (but also ridiculously fun.) FC is a cakewalk by comparison, in a hotel and all. ;-)
t_h_squirrel From: t_h_squirrel Date: September 8th, 2008 06:15 am (UTC) (Link)
Wow! I saw videos on You Tube. I saw it is a 7 day 24 hour party non stop. Did you ever sleep from all the constant noise going on? Also, were there any wind storms. I saw they can get really bad on the video too.
catwoman69y2k.insanejournal.com From: catwoman69y2k.insanejournal.com Date: September 6th, 2008 10:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Honestly when you marked this entry as containing some bitches/gripes, I exepcted alot more. It sounds like you got more good out of the event than the bad. Thats important to take away more of the good from the event than the few assholes (which you will always have to deal with somewhere at some time). I do think that the tour going that close to the temple was garish. I notice that I tended to drop to an "indoor voice" when I approached the temple last year.

I was really looking forward to Jovino rocking Jub Jub's but it looks like something happened beyond his control. Georgette and Shone are so awesome so I bet they really appreicated the eclectic mix that Jovino usually has in his aresenal.

Rest is very good. I will be back to BM next year for sure. Might have an idea that needs a bit of a bunnywarez touch.
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 8th, 2008 04:06 am (UTC) (Link)
Shone was super cool - I think he is the one I was chatting with that evening. yeah, JubJub had an awesome setup and it just seemed like random chance that it wasn't going off that night. then again, the night before was AMAZING - how much more can you ask for. :-)

as to the balance of awesome vs suck, so far, awesome has won out every time (at least for me.) so, I keep going.
sterlingsf From: sterlingsf Date: September 6th, 2008 11:41 pm (UTC) (Link)

Whoa, it's tough being the DJ

HI M,

Thanks for the long playa report. Couldn't make it out this year, but it's fun to read about other peoples' adventures. It sounds like you had a couple awkward DJ moments this year. Just remember that some of us LOOOOOVE it when you spin. You just keep on keepin on, y'hear? - xoxox
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 8th, 2008 04:10 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Whoa, it's tough being the DJ

thanks. every year has its challenges, and its rewards. the one (disco) set I did get to do was actually a lot of fun once I got going, and very well-received.

my best times were (as usual) hanging out with Jovino and other folks. it's a big part of why I go (that, and I just feel at home there - maybe it's my gypsy blood - I just love it.)

hey, got time for lunch any time soon? I can meet you in SF or east bay...

xoxox!
From: lord_kook Date: September 8th, 2008 03:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
"I don't go for the man-burn, I go for a reunion with friends and quality time with my bunny."

Yesh, this. Except Phil's not a bunny. :)

Great post, glad to hear your time was full. Sorry we didn't really see each other outside of Wednesday night, but that's the way the playa crumbles.
bikerwalla From: bikerwalla Date: September 9th, 2008 10:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm planning to go next year. I hope I run into you.

Still on the fence about the koala hat :)
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 10th, 2008 01:38 am (UTC) (Link)
you'd probably be amazed at how many furries there are out there! you can meet up with people on the e-playa if you are looking for a camp to join (there is also a burning man lj community.) it's a LOT more work than a weekend in a hotel, though, let me tell you. ;-)
bikerwalla From: bikerwalla Date: September 10th, 2008 05:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
I went to the playa in 07. I felt so good. Can't wait to do it again.
robotter From: robotter Date: September 10th, 2008 01:26 am (UTC) (Link)

Clean-up

It's always the least planned-for and most necessary part of any Burn trip. Whenever you have a big camp, clean-up is the part that leaves people feeling unappreciated and used. It's always the super troopers who do the clean-up. Strangely, this year a lot of the folks who had done BLD set-up left on Saturday, leaving the latecomers to fend for themselves. And it worked quite well.

This year in the BLD, I suggested a MANDATORY clean-up for anyone still there on Sunday afternoon. And surprisingly, things got done in a timely fashion. Things were looking pretty good when we left Monday morning.

It's also helpful with public spaces to have a clean-up session twice a day. I used to make patrons of my theme camp, in addition to anyone who was actually part of it, participate in 15 minutes of clean-up if they were present. Many hands make light work, and then things are straightened up for the evening.

Sorry we didn't get to see you in Drano on Tuesday night. Would have called the Peppermill, but I don't know your real name! (Or if I do, I'm not tellin'....)
djmermaid From: djmermaid Date: September 10th, 2008 01:44 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Clean-up

there were a LOT more people around for cleanup last year. I don't know what happened, but everyone was in a hot-ass hurry to get on the early arrival list (one camp requested more than 10 names) yet very few stuck around to clean. hopefully next year this will be addressed. I'm not giving up on g-ville (yet) but I really do not want to be screwed over again.

yeah, I'm bummed we missed you too! I didn't have my cel phone with me so didn't get your message until we got home on Wednesday. next time try Jovino's cel too...

see you in October!

say have you looked at the gigs-deck I gave you? I've been amazed to see how many of the cards seem to embody the traditional themes. I think though that the way I will probably read off these cards is to simply interpret the image straight up, without trying to draw too much on traditional meanings. maybe we can do some practice readings when I see you... so far I have not really worked with the deck besides looking at individual cards (and doing a bit of random drawing - the 8 of pie keeps popping up! which, seems to be all about planning and anticipating the related rewards of that planning.)
zoe_serious From: zoe_serious Date: September 11th, 2008 07:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
I caught up on your post last week but have been too busy to respond.

I was on the art tour on Thursday and Moda helped get me an additional bus for my friends since we always follow this special meet the artists tour but get a little more bent so can't go on the regular tour ;)

I agree that it's not great etiquette for any of the buses to cruise up to the temple with the music blaring especially if it's not chill or respectful, this drives me nuts. I can see how the art tour blathering on about the art might have affected your experience out there, but we try to encourage folks that cannot make it out due to physical limitations (older, injured, pregnant, young etc) to come on the bus tour and others to go on one of the bike tours that we now hold twice a day.

The Thursday tour is usually noiser and more invasive with the pieces since we get the artists to talk about their piece and how it was created. The temple was the 6th or 7th piece out of 10 on this tour. If you want to give feedback feel free to send me an email (I did email you as requested though you can get me at serious (at) burningman.com as well as at the other addy I emailed from) and I will give it to Bettie June directly who leads the team.

big hugs, sorry we didn't connect, I ended up working more then usual and barely made it anywhere.
26 smooches or Gimme Some Love!