JRS VOLUME #13; ISSUE #04
Burning Man Update: The Jack Rabbit Speaks
Volume 13, Issue #4
October 9, 2008
You'll be happy to know that your Rabbits -- unlike SOME people -- refuse to engage in negative campaigning. So, you can read on without worry of having mud slung in your eye. How often have you been able to say THAT lately, huh? OK then ...
We're happy (and quite proud, frankly) to start this issue by reporting that Burning Man has once again passed its cleanup inspection with the BLM, meaning that a) we kicked some Leave No Trace butt, and b) our BLM permit to use the Black Rock Desert will be renewed so we can play again next year! Please do read the message from our own Tony "Coyote" Perez below, because he has something to say to YOU. Hint: we're getting pretty darn good at this. Nice work everybody!
From there, we regale you with miscellaneous smatterings of entertaining informational variety, including soliciting your feedback about the size of Black Rock City, how much art was REALLY on playa this year, Burning Man artwork gracing the biggest little city of Reno, the latest from Burners Without Borders, a touching thank you note to the community from that dude whose motor home caught on fire outside the event (brutal, yo), and info about London decompression. Finally, we offer up Scott London's wonderful gallery of Burning Man 2008 photographs that miiiight just bring a tear to the eye.
Oh and hey! San Francisco Decompression is this sunday Sunday SUNDAY!! You want to check it out? Yeah you do. Here's all the deets, including the full lineup and schedule, smack dab on the Burning Man website: http://tinyurl.com/6eqwyz ... we'll see you kids there!
We hope you and yours are doing well as the chill of autumn descends upon us ... time to bust out the cozy sweaters, peoples. And maybe cram your face into your fuzzy coat and sniff the dust? Yeah, that too. See you next time.
+ BURNING MAN PASSES 2008 BLM INSPECTION - CONGRATULATIONS ALL!
+ WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THE CITY SIZE IN 2008?
+ HOW MUCH ART WAS ON THE PLAYA THIS YEAR?
+ BURNING MAN ART IN RENO
+ WHAT'S NEW WITH BURNERS WITHOUT BORDERS?
+ A NOTE OF THANKS FROM THE OWNER OF THE BURNED OUT MOTOR HOME
+ SEEKING PHOTOS OR VIDEO OF "THE END" ARTWORK & MANDOLIN SERENADER
+ SEEKING EDITOR FOR NOVEL BASED ON BURNING MAN
EVENTS & HAPPENINGS
+ SAN FRANCISCO DECOMPRESSION - THIS SUNDAY - FULL LINEUP AND SCHEDULE
+ THE LONDON DECOMPRESSION
PHOTOS & IMAGES:
+ BURNING MAN PHOTOGRAPHY FROM SCOTT LONDON
BURNING MAN PASSES 2008 BLM INSPECTION - CONGRATULATIONS ALL!
Tony "Coyote" Perez writes to relate the status of our annual BLM inspection, and to express his gratitude for the community's incrdible accomplishments in Leave No Trace:
"Greetings all -
Just a brief posting to inform that once again the Playa Restoration crew has turned in another BLM (Bureau of Land Management) passed inspection on October 2nd. And also once again it passed by about half the required standards that we, ourselves, have set over the years - those standards being less than one square foot of debris per acre.
Pretty impressive, wouldn't you say?! I'd like to extend heartiest thanks and congratulations to the hard boiled crew members and volunteers that stayed the course in the harsh September playa conditions 'til the bitter end, and to the Playa Restoration Manager, DA [Editor's Note: we love DA], for his expertise at guiding the line sweeps and special force 'hot spot' squads across the over four and a half square miles inside the fence perimeter.
Our BLM chief inspector, Roger Farshon has even said once that there have been families of four that have left more of a mess than our entire city of 49,000 or so!
It is also with most enthusiasm that I say that our job would not be possible without the amazing diligence of our participants themselves who for the most part literally pick their camps completely clean! Thedeepest thanks to you all!! The MOOP map created in '06 - a color coded map that rates the cleanliness of the city block by block - reveals the incredible improvements of the last three years. They will be on display at the Decompression event in SF on the 12th of October.
I like to think that this map has had its influence in this astounding improvement.
The fact of the matter is that without this proud environmental element of the Burning Man culture, failed inspections would halt the BLM permit process and Burning Man would be in dire peril. So thank you all once again for making us hard not to like in the environmental circles and to those who oppose us, and for setting the Leave No Trace example for the entire world to see and hopefully follow.
With all my love and respect
Tony Perez aka Coyote
Department of Public Works
Black Rock City, Nevada"
WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THE CITY SIZE IN 2008?
In case you didn't notice, our City Planning Department increased the size of Black Rock City in 2008, in order to accommodate our growing population, and to lessen the impact of overcrowding. We removed 2007's three inner blocks -- Esplanade through "C" -- and that became our Esplanade for 2008. After the Esplanade, the streets ran A-K. Since we took the three shortest concentric streets from the inside, we added two longer concentric roads at the back of the city to create more camping space. The distance from the Man to the Esplanade road thus increased from 2,200 to 2,700 feet, which meant the length of the Esplanade grew over 2,500 feet longer than in 2007.
Got all that? In short: bigger. So, what did you think? Too big? Just right? Too small still? We'd like to factor your input into our planning for 2009. So, take a moment to participate in our poll, and tell us what you thought of the city size in 2008: http://www.burningman.com/polls/polls.php
HOW MUCH ART WAS ON THE PLAYA THIS YEAR?
We've heard in the grinding of the rumor mill that there wasn't as
much art on playa this year. It's true that there weren't as many
massive pieces, and the larger inner playa swallowed up more of what
was there, but Ladybee reports to us that the final count for 2008
(yes, we keep track of these things) was down only slightly from 2007,
which was a record-breaking year for art on the playa. She writes:
"I've just gone through the ARTery books, and here's the final count:
Art on the playa: 240 installations, broken down as follows ...
Theme and playa: 137
In 2007, we had a total of 256 projects, so we're down slightly for 2008."
BURNING MAN ART IN RENO
Josie from the Black Rock Arts Foundation writes to fill us in on the latest artistic goings on in Reno:
"The Nevada Museum of Art dedicated the much admired 'Guardian of Eden' by Kate Raudenbush on Wed. 9/24. Kate gave a lecture featuring many incredible photos of Burning Man. It was very informative and fun featuring drawings and notes in her sketchbook, scientific, engineering and philosophical background, which combined, showed the process from an "idea" to a final piece on the playa. The auditorium was packed with people of all ages and the dedication was deeply moving.
See the Reno Gazette-Journal article: http://tinyurl.com/4tvla6
BRAF's Reno project, The Mangrove, continues to be embraced by the city with Sunday afternoons featuring Music in the Mangrove. Reno's Decompression event will start in the Mangrove on Saturday, Oct. 18 with daytime activities for the whole family. There will be art workshops using recycled materials, music, Controlled Burn doing demos, and much more.
See the Reno Gazette-Journal article: http://tinyurl.com/4cnm53
David Boyer's 2008 Honorarium piece titled 'Free Flight' has grown from 4 birds at Burning Man to 12 birds commissioned by the City of Reno for the Robb Drive roundabout. It's a beautiful addition to Reno's Public Art program. In addition, David's tree 'Bonsai', a kinetic wind sculpture/tree (from Burning Man 2007) is currently in the Mangrove.
See the Reno Gazette-Journal article: http://tinyurl.com/43ljly
Add to all of this, from Oct. 23 Dec. 11, there will be a photo exhibit featuring art from Burning Man that has been placed in civic environments titled 'From the Playa to City Parks, BRAF paves the Way' at the McKinley Art Gallery.
Not a bad representation in the gateway city to Black Rock City!!!"
WHAT'S NEW WITH BURNERS WITHOUT BORDERS?
Burners Without Borders is very active these days, wrapping up their work in Pisco Peru, and focusing attention on the Gulf Coast recently pounded by Hurricane Ike. Learn more about how you can get involved by visiting their website:
A NOTE OF THANKS FROM THE OWNER OF THE BURNED OUT MOTOR HOME
We received this nice note from Tiki John, and thought it worth sharing with the community. Thanks to you all for ... well ... embodying the Burning Man spirit. John writes:
"I'm Tiki John. My friend Mark and I were driving the motor home that burned to the ground near the entrance to Burning Man. We just drove 5 hrs to go to the Burning Man festival, and as we were driving I started to smell smoke. We pulled over, but by then we were already on fire. We tried to put it out, but it grew so fast with those 40mph winds. So many people pulled over to help us put it out but it was out of our control. We lost everything.
This was my 11th year and Mark's first. We had to go home, because it was just too much to handle. After two days of depression and heartache, Mark called and said "It hurts too much ... we have to go back." I said, "But we have nothing." He said, "After everything you told me about Burning Man, we should be ok." He was so right.
We returned on Wednesday night, and it was like the whole city knew what had happen to us. They came to us with jackets, water, food, beer, and we had many offers of shelter. It just goes to show how much love there is at Burning Man. We could only stay for 3 days and 2 nights, but it was the best time i had in 11 years.
I want to thank everyone for their love and help. We want to thank Bruno's in Gerlach for staying open late until our ride got there, and all the people that came in to see if we needed any help.
I also want to thank Burning Man for all the help, sending us 13 (aka Erin) ... she was an angel and a hero to us. She gave us a ride to town and stayed with us until she knew we were ok. I love you girl.
A huge thanks to Burning Man for cleaning up the remains of what was our mess, not yours ... we felt most upset about leaving such a burned up mess on the side of the road, we owe you guys BIG TIME.
A big thanks to Larry Harvey, Maid Marian, Ladybee, Danger Ranger, etc. for bringing Burning Man to my world.
With much love, John Steele (Tiki John) and Mark Dwitt (MR magic)."
SEEKING PHOTOS OR VIDEO OF "THE END" ARTWORK & MANDOLIN SERENADER
Long-time Burning Man artist and all-around good guy Bob "Wizzard" Marzewski wants some pics of his art installation this year. That was the giant "THE END" sculpture out at the trash fence. He requests:
"If you took photos/video of THE END, I'd love to post them on my site and give you a credit line and/or link to your site. I'd especially like photos of while we were building since I took so few. (The higher rez the better!)
I'd also love to get in contact with the woman who sang and played the mandolin like an angel for my friend and I by THE END as the sky faded to black one night. She was planning on releasing a CD of her music that I'd really like to get.
Reach me at wizzard (at) wizzard (dot) com on either topic."
SEEKING EDITOR FOR NOVEL BASED ON BURNING MAN
James Rory Smith writes us seeking an editor for his upcoming novel, set at Burning Man. If you have skillz, hit him up directly. OK then, take it, James:
"I have written an action adventure novel that is based on Burning Man.
The book is sort of religious/murder/mystery novel with heroes and such. I need someone to do the editing for me.
The book is essentially about a man and his friends who are attending the event. While there, the main character meets an older man who has secrets. The primary secret is that our main character is the direct descendent of Jesus Christ. Nothing but action occurs after the secret is revealed.
Any help you can give me would be monstrously appreciated.
James Rory Smith
jrsmith4 (at) duke-energy (dot) com br/>"
SAN FRANCISCO DECOMPRESSION - THIS SUNDAY - FULL LINEUP AND SCHEDULE
San Francisco Decompression is THIS Sunday ... and you KNOW you want to go. It's gonna be a hoot, inasmuch as it's looking to be the most action-packed, participant-rich, performance-laden (and many other hyphenated things) Decompression we've seen yet. It's true. Don't believe it? See for yourself ... visit the Decompression page on the Burning Man website to dig through the full lineup for all the stages, directions, downloadable map, and more:
THE LONDON DECOMPRESSION
Our Regional Contacts in London (that's England, folks ... the UK) write to invite us all to join them in their fine decompression revelry (all we need is a plane ticket, and we're so there). To wit:
"After weeks of feverish anticipation we can finally announce: On Friday 5th December in a spectacular central-London venue, 9pm 'til 6am, Burners, Nooners and their fellow travelers from all over Europe will join together to: DECOMPRESS.
We've found an amazing venue with LOTS of outdoor space, so in addition to all the fabulousness that YOU will bring to the event we'll once again be able to have our spectacular fire show plus lots of other special surprises.
Tickets will go on sale in mid-October via the Euroburners website:
As always LonCom happens for the community, by the community; it's all produced by volunteers and we need lots of them. We'll be holding a volunteer meeting on Tuesday 14th October, 7pm at The Southwark Rooms, 60 Southwark St, SE1. Please come along and feel the love and joy from being part of the team that makes Decom the sparkling joy that it is. Or send a mail to volunteer (at) euroburners (dot) org
We can't wait to bring that little bit of the playa back to London with y'all.
The London Crew"
[Editor's Note: WTF is a Nooner? We thought that was a mid-day quickie. Clearly a case where a mistranslation can lead to oodles of hilarity.]
BURNING MAN PHOTOGRAPHY FROM SCOTT LONDON
Long-time Burning Man photographer Scott London was at it again out there this year, and as usual, he kicked some serious phographic bootie. For reals. Don't believe us? Check out his gallery:
Thank you Scott! Watch this space for more photographers' galleries to come.
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Soundtrack for this JRS: Magnetic Fields, Earlimart, Devotchka, Beirut, Neil Diamond (yes, really), Edit Piaf, Andrew Bird.