August 20th, 2008  |  Filed under Building BRC

Some of the people throwing this party

August 20th, 2008  |  Filed under Building BRC
Bean is everywhere there is something that needs doing

Bean is everywhere there is something that needs doing

So I know the pictures can make the desert look all pretty and gorgeous and everything, but you oughta know what’s really going on out here in the days and weeks before the gates open: A lot of work. A lot of hot, hard, dusty, back-breaking work.

You'd never know this was Blondage's first time

You'd never know this was Blondage's first time

There are blisters on top of blisters, aching muscles and even backs that don’t quite stand up straight anymore. There are cramps and sunburn and cuts and scratches and just pure exhaustion, both physical and mental.

There have been holes to be dug, lumber to lift, canvas to stretch, spires to construct, nails to hammer and about 8 million zip ties to tie. It’s ridiculous to even try to describe the thousands of things that need doing to put on this party.

Here’s a pretty lame attempt at trying: Imagine you’ve got a new place, and your in-laws are coming. You’re still in boxes, but you’re on the hook for dinner for 15. Oh, and the deck and the bathroom and the kitchen are in the middle of a remodel. And the nearest store is three hours away. And it’s the middle of summer, and the air-conditioning doesn’t work.

If you didn't tape up for fence day, you were in trouble.

If you didn't tape up for fence day, you were in trouble.

That doesn’t even begin describe what it’s like out here.

The DPW crew and others know that most people show up at the gate not really knowing or caring how this all got here. And that’s fine; that’s the way it is when you go to a party.

So who the hell ARE these people who do all the work? And why do they do it, exactly?

Playground is usually smiling, no matter how stressful the situation

Playground is usually smiling, no matter how stressful the situation

There’s no way to answer that question, really. Because people have as many different motivations as people have for coming to the Burn. And don’t forget, there will be absolutely no sign that any of this labor ever happened by the end of September or so. It’ll be gone. Leave no trace.

So what’s it about?

Doug is one of the key players on the Man crew

Doug is one of the key players on the Man crew

“It’s our gift,” is what I hear a lot of DPW people say. I’ve talked to a fair number of them about it, and it always seems to come down to that. “We threw you a hell of a party,” as Niko put it the other day.

But there’s something else going on, and it’s hard to define exactly what it is. What do these people get out of doing all this work? Yes, some get paid, and they get fed, and maybe a place to stay. And they get free admission to the event.

The commissary fuels the machine

The commissary fuels the machine

And of course there’s also the feeling of community that you get to enjoy, the brotherhood that takes hold of the men and women here. You can’t go through all this and not feel connected to the other people here, and to something bigger than yourself.

But I’m also guessing that maybe, for a lot of people, this is the place where they get to feel like they are giving something back. They might be kind of on the periphery in the default world, the independent operators, but here they are the true citizens, with all pride and sense of civic responsibility that comes with it.

By the end of the day, Jamie is always one of the dustiest people on the playa

By the end of the day, Jamie is always one of the dustiest people on the playa

I’m going to generalize for a second and say that these are the kids who were the wild and crazy ones in high school. The ones you wouldn’t dare sit with in the cafeteria. They laughed louder and had more fun and had more sex than you did. But here, out here, is where you get to see how much heart they have. And guts.

Some of the crew have been here since May. It’s their life. They are dustier and crispier than the people arriving every day. And you won’t really notice them when you get here, because it’s not likely they’ll be on an art car. But they might be wearing one of those cool t-shirts with the orange Burning Man symbol on the back.

Be nice. They’ve earned your respect.

Here are some of the people to look for when you get here:

Lexy runs the Commisary, and she feeds hundreds of people a day.

Lexi runs the Commissary, and she feeds hundreds of people a day.


17 Responses to “Some of the people throwing this party”

  1. bug.out Says:

    niko rockstar muthaf*kr baby! we love you. kiss that dust for us. your homies in colorado. we’ll keep the baconpornboozesmokes safe for ya.

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  2. gabedanger Says:

    I need you people to know that I am forever grateful for your hard work. I show up….a self contained unit…armed with energy and love. You have all provided me with a template for self expression and energetic frenzy…and I love you and thank you for it.

    yours in tribe
    GabeDanger!

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  3. Ranger Osho Says:

    Yeah! WELL PUT WELL PUT! YOU ALL DEFINITELY ROCK VERY HARD AND VERY WELL. GREAT SHOTS OF ALL OF YOU. I CAN’T WAIT TO GET OUT THERE…My mind is aglow with whirling transient nodes of thought careening through a cosmic vapor of invention. Osho on RNR salutes you! You’re my heros. Love!

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  4. Debo Says:

    Wow, what can you say but thanks!!!! Your amazing and I hope to meet everyone of you and share the experiance and a few gifts we have for you all!!!!

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  5. E Bomb Says:

    Thank you for ALL that you do. Your gift is tremendous and so very much appreciated!

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  6. reverend dr dj riz Says:

    .. i’ve been cooking and baking(.. and baking.. and baking..) and packing and running around like a head with my chicken cut off and took a break to see what ya’ll are up to..and now after reading this i’m positively all teary with gratitude and a little ashamed that i complained to someone about all the work it takes to help make a camp when here y’all is making a CITY ! bless each and every one of you lovelies for being stronger than me and making it happen. i am so hugging all of you if we ever meet.

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  7. Dee Says:

    Thank you for all of the hard work that everyone puts into making this sanctuary happen every year!

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  8. deeksha doktoe Says:

    all workers who toil before Monday… you don’t go to heaven… you ARE in heaven! Enlightened as well! thanks.

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  9. emperor bunny Says:

    words can not express the love and appreciation all burners have for you dust devils…lovely freakin thanks from the bottom of our soon to be dusty hearts.

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  10. Ranger Tim Says:

    You guys set it up and we’ll keep the crowd chilled and happy.

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  11. Rylie Says:

    You guys are amazing and beautiful.
    Temple builders, Man builders, Camp builders, Crew, etc.
    You are incredible superheroes.
    I can’t wait to be out there with you.
    Only 3 more days!
    Hooray!

    Does anyone need anything?

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  12. Blair Golson Says:

    You guys have my undying affection. Some day I will be among your ranks…

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  13. globalautist Says:

    Wow!!!

    What a kick !!! There is still fun, love and hope in this fucked up world which ain’t corrupted by money !

    Love

    Globalautist

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  14. Sarah M Says:

    So much love and thanks to every last one of you good and dusty people! Simply amazing.

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  15. Button Says:

    Looks like you folks have earned some PBR! Thanks for all you do — see you soon Face & Anne Bonnie!

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  16. roadwisespiritseeker Says:

    My heartfelt thanks to all of you who toiled and sweated to build the infrastructure for this wonderful deviation from the overly structured and dogmatic world that most of America has come to be. We are the pioneers to the new world. Let the celebration begin!!!

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  17. michael Says:

    thank you, thank you, thank you, all of you. just getting my dusty stuff together today made my hands hurt. i hope you know how much your hard work is appreciated!

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