Posts in playa magic

March 24th, 2011  |  Filed under Tales From The Playa

Burning Manifestation

Tales From The Playa are dreams and memories of events that took place at Burning Man, as told by its participants.

The Playa provides. I heard that sentence countless times before I ever made it to the desert. The meaning was explained to me as the power of manifestation. I was, of course, familiar with the concept of manifestation, which as I understood was the power to create the world around you. Sometimes it is a constant flow, other times it blossoms like a flower, beautiful if only temporary. But I can’t say I had any conscious experience with it before I reached Black Rock City.

My first trip to the Playa was an odyssey in and of itself that took 9 years to complete. My dear friend Eva, a veteran Burner who encouraged and motivated me to see it through, hinted that sometimes the combination of the elements and the energy, mixed in with all the default world programming we’re saddled with, is enough to crack you open like an egg. A few days of intense heat, complete whiteouts, self-inflicted sleep deprivation and a little dehydration thrown in for good measure, and I was feeling like Humpty Dumpty himself. I didn’t realize how much baggage I was carrying with me. We all have, or will have, baggage at some point, but I normally try to travel with no more than a carry on. I realized that Burning Man was not normal given my default conditioning. The next thought slapped me in the face even harder: perhaps it wasn’t my surroundings that were abnormal; perhaps it was my programming.

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January 18th, 2011  |  Filed under Tales From The Playa


Tales From The Playa are dreams and memories of events that took place at Burning Man, as told by its participants.

So I’m standing in this bar the other night. This total stranger … never seen him before … is passing in front of me. Suddenly he stops and just swings around and looks me in the eye.

Then he starts talking … a little tipsy, British accent, and I’m thinking who is this guy?  We chat for a while, I’m making small talk to be polite, and he mentions Burning Man.  I like to hear what people say about Burning Man without them knowing what I do for a living, so I let him go on for a while without letting on.

He says Burning Man is the one place in the world — and he’s lived in more than a handful of exotic countries — where he actually felt HOME.  He came with his friends from the UK and it changed his life. He tossed it all up in the air, moved to San Francisco, and here he stands in front of me.

I finally tell him who I am, and he says: “Oh, wow!  OK, I really need to tell you this story.”

Banksy's Girl With Heart Balloon

Banksy's Girl With Heart Balloon

“You know that one Banksy stencil of the little girl with the heart balloon?”

“Yeah, sure,” I say. He tells me he was an animator back in the UK, and made a short animated film based on that image. He had a picture of it on his bedroom wall for years … it was the first thing he saw when he woke up in the morning, and the last thing he saw before falling asleep.  Then he came to Burning Man for the first time. Read more »