At the end of August, I made my yearly trek to my happy place.
The Burning Man Festival.
For those that either don’t know or have never heard of it, you can Google it, but it will just make you more confused. I just Googled it and got 214,000,000 hits in 0.12 Seconds. Save yourself the time.
In a nutshell:
Burning Man is a festival held at the end of August every year in the Black Rock Desert in Nevada. It has art, music, and a bit of an alternative culture.
Ravers attend, but it is not a rave.
Hippies attend, but it is not a love fest.
You will find just about every demographic of humanity here. And a few you didn’t even know about.
There are no vendors. None. The only things that are sold other than the entry tickets are coffee, tea, iced tea, lemonade and ice. All profits go to charity.
The daily average temperature can be about 120 degrees.
It is everything and nothing at the same time. You can see more bizarre art than you have ever seen in your life, stuff that will never be in any museum.
Imagine a tanker fuel truck, bent and twisted into a dollar symbol.
A huge oil platform, several stories high, that explodes and burns to the ground.
A massive steel dragon, coddling her eggs and belching streams of fire into the night.
Speaking of night, the dry lake bed the event is held on, called the Playa, looks a lot like downtown Las Vegas at night, only with more fire. And more neon. Neon everywhere. The fact that the Neon is often the only light around, makes it every brighter.
Add to that the constant background bass thump of techno music, 24 7.
Whole lot of sensory overload.
Nudity, outlandish costumes, outrageously decorated vehicles and radical self expression abounds.
Except for this year, and that is the reason for this post.
I thrive on rumor, innuendo and sometimes bald-faced lies. It is a little part of me that is evil but fits in with the rest of my baggage well enoughto be monogrammed.
A conspiracy theory about Burning Man 2012 has started.
Here are the facts:
- No theme has been announced. This is really unusual, next years event is always announced before you leave this years event.
- The Bureau of Land Management land permit that allows the whole event to take place, has yet to be renewed.
- Burning man sold out for the first time ever, just over 50K people. A number of significant people have always said the end will come when the even gets too big. That it will break up into smaller events.
- The Man, (A 40 foot tall wooden figure burned at the end of the week), for the first time, is in a walking stance. He has never been in this stance before. Is he walking away?
- The LLC that runs Burning Man has morphed into a Non-profit. To better move into a Foundation/Management mode?
- A project at Burning Man 2011 called CORE, introduced the various Burning Man recognized regions to the participants.
- It is the 25th anniversary of Burning Man. Numbers are important to these people.
- 2011’s theme was Rites of Passage. Prophetic?
- The Burning Man website has had a tagline announcing the date that tickets for 2012 would be available. That tagline has been removed. Hmmmmmmm.There really is no way of knowing one way or the other.
But there is a lot of talk.
A LOT of talk.