Tales From The Playa are dreams and memories of events that took place at Burning Man, as told by its participants.
I have a friend named Party Radar and I have known her for over 10 years in the Burning Man community. We have been on volunteer teams together, I have seen her dance on a bar (one of those things you see in movies but don’t really ever expect to see real people doing unless they are getting paid), and she sometimes lives in the world as a bunny. She sent me a little story the other day and asked if there were a way to get it posted on the Burning Blog. Well, who can say no to a bunny.
Once when I was at Burning Man I was working at my job at Volunteer Resources. This is when it was still behind Center Camp. This older gentleman comes up. He looked like this kind of nutty engineering type guy. He was wearing a plain white t-shirt that was horribly unfancy so I decided to help him. I took my sparkly t-shirt paint and wrote “Kiss Me” on his shirt. I told him that now not only does he look a lot better but now people will want to kiss him. He said something like ‘Yeah, now all I have to do is find someone to kiss me’, as if that would NEVER happen. No sooner had those words passed his lips but some sassy little lady around his age turned to her right and said “I’ll kiss you” and she planted one right on him (a good one too) then they took off together. It was MAGIC.
Aught six was Tornado Alley in the Keyhole. They’d form over by Earth Guardians, at Carousel Corner and start spinning all erratic and slow, trying to find their focus, some becoming almost an entity but most of them becoming sputtering dust disturbers and nothing more.
The Devils that built into something substantial started the same, swirling and sometimes halting then starting again, but they eventually stood tall on their own, spitting up playa until they formed a wobbling body that gained legs then inevitably started marching head first into the City with a frenzy of vengeance. Though they held such promise, most shot their load in that first block and dissipated into nothingness.
We enjoyed watching Black Rock City citizens flock towards those promising funnels on foot and bike, trying to be there when the big one manifested itself.
photo Moze 06
That day our camp mate Alanna was performing his BIG BLACK MAN SHOW in Center Camp, so after an afternoon tour of the playa Art, we made our way back to camp to find he and his troupe lazing beneath their shade structures. We alerted them that they were almost late for their show which sent everyone into a mad buzzing of costumes and props and makeup flying while they became fabulous.
Ms. Bird, HotDamn and I made our way to Center Camp and found an empty couch whilst Alanna, Jerome, Alison, Bambi, Adam L.and the others in the BIG BLACK MAN SHOW all got ready to take the stage. While we waited, the hippies moved slowly about, all dreadlocked and tie dyed and smelling of patchouli. They imbibed and stretched, prayed and Tai Chi’ed.
Then Alanna took the stage. He is the BIG BLACK MAN and he is quite huge and entirely muscular, like some sculpture of a God. He’s got a hell of a voice and he’s amazing in his cosmic freak drag.
He sang “Colored Spade” from the musical Hair. He talked about how there were like 20 black people at Burning Man and 40 thousand white people but he wasn’t scared.
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In the beginning, there was nothing but flags ...
So I thought it would be a good time to take a look at how things are shaping up so far. First up is Center Camp. The shade screens are still going up (which involves the tedious and difficult task of attaching ties to each and every grommet that attaches to the cables), but already the shade is significant.
Do me a favor: When you get here, lavish the work crew with every gift and kindness that’s in your power to provide. Read more »