Weighing in on 2008: "The American Dream" theme

Post Reply
User avatar
Posts: 78
Joined: Fri May 04, 2007 10:29 am
Burning Since: 2007
Location: the Mallard on the playa

Weighing in on 2008: "The American Dream" theme

Post by DeusRegit » Fri Sep 14, 2007 8:11 am

My initial response to anything that is other than what I envision the purpose of Burning Man to be, is "blech!"
And had my mind not been on my recent return from the Black Rock Desert, I would have wondered, " whose agenda are they pushing now?"
Instead, I immediately recalled a paper I wrote in college for narrative writing titled, "The American Dream - Realized In Transit." Then, ofcourse, it didn't take much for me to realize what it is that I am attracted to in Burning Man as I realized how much of the memories of BM '07 are of the incredible drive I had getting there.
We all probably agree by now that Burning Man is not just one thing - it's not a unanimous philosophy or an agreed upon way of life - it is something very different and personal to each participant.
For me, Burning Man is about getting there and what a release it is from conventional society to extract myself from the "conditioned" way of evaluating my life and putting myself in a context that is more condusive to learning, fascination, wonderment, discovery, sharing, helping and gifting. And for me, that dream - the American Dream that was probably the impetus behind the growth of Route 66 - is without uncertainty, realized for me in transit. Of the many photos that I shot at BM this year, most of those I will display will be of the event. But there were just as many that were shot on my way there, and the route I chose was a chance to experience those places, those memories that are a part of my American Dream.
I think Larry Harvey (and my apologies for trying to quote him as he is probably the last person any of us want to be accused of quoting) said in one of his interviews on the Beyond Black Rock DVD that he may not be certain what that thing is that lures him to Black Rock but he does know that the intellectual and physical journey of getting there is a large part of it.
Like The Green Man theme, Burning Man has followed the 2008 Theme description with a sudo-disclaimer about what it is not supposed to be about in order to get us to arrive more quickly at what they would like it to be. So we understand it's about optimism and individual as well as cultural pursuits. But regradless of what the folks at BM LLC come up with as a theme, I'm still going to make the annual pilgrimage to what I jubilantly referred to as "my Mecca" when I struck the bell at the gates to BRC for the first time.
Yes, for me, The American Dream theme works and I can easily relate to it.

So that's my cut on the 2008 Theme, and I am very curious to see how many different descriptions of the American Dream theme are played out here on the ePlaya over the next 345 days.
See you on the Playa.

I'm not burnt, just lightly toasted.

User avatar
Simon of the Playa
Posts: 19042
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:25 pm
Burning Since: 1996
Camp Name: La Guilde des Hashischins
Location: Rochester, Nevada.

Post by Simon of the Playa » Fri Sep 14, 2007 4:50 pm

next year i'm going as a mexican...

User avatar
Posts: 5323
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 7:32 pm
Burning Since: 1996
Camp Name: ESD
Location: my computer

Post by mdmf007 » Fri Sep 14, 2007 5:05 pm

I am back baby -

My thoughts on the American Dream? I think BM will do nothing but butcher it. I especially liked the monumental failure in the "Green Pavillion" But i will give the American Dream theme a chance. Ever hear the saying - "last years burn was better" Bet that doesnt get said after 2008's


Steven bradford
Posts: 351
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2003 11:29 pm
Location: Seattle

Post by Steven bradford » Fri Sep 14, 2007 5:42 pm

Last year's theme controversy was better.

Paint or Be Painted

User avatar
Posts: 4257
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2004 7:46 pm
Burning Since: 2006
Location: Wisconsin

Post by BAS » Fri Sep 14, 2007 7:41 pm

True. The discussion about carbon credits was very interesting.

"Nothing is withheld from us which we have conceived to do.
Do things that have never been done."
--Russell Kirsch

User avatar
Box Burner
Posts: 5781
Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 2:33 am
Location: Kentucky

Post by Box Burner » Fri Sep 14, 2007 8:28 pm

Last years whiners were better too!
Dance in the heart of chaos. . . . .

ὁ δὲ ἀνεξέταστος βίος οὐ βιωτὸς ἀνθρώπῳ
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - --- Σωκράτης


User avatar
Simon of the Playa
Posts: 19042
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:25 pm
Burning Since: 1996
Camp Name: La Guilde des Hashischins
Location: Rochester, Nevada.

Post by Simon of the Playa » Sat Sep 15, 2007 8:52 am

i'm still going as a mexican....with a GREEN CARD.....

i'll be with the large crew known as the C.I.A.

now don't jump to conclusions, hippies....thats Camp Illegal Alien...

and I dont care whether you come from Tijuana or Rigel-7....

"give us you poor, your tired, your day glo orange"

we will be supplying YOU the iilegal alien burnarados, with a FREE BUS TRIP back to the border you came from...the mexican border, borders and books, whatever...

this means you too, all of you peeps from canadia.

Now THATS the AMERICAN DREAM......a festival thats as WHITE as BurningMan, and soon as AMERICAN as Tom Tancredo...(oh wait, he's a wop....lets bus HIM back to little it-lee)

As AMERICAN as ARNOLD SCHWARZEN..oops...damn, he's a fucking kraut...shise.

anybody know any REAL americans?

JOHN FUCKING WAYNE.....oh wait, he was queer wasnt he?...i've seen pictures of him in espadrilles and SHORT SHORTS.

wow....i guess that america has become a giant cess-pool of foreign elements....

adios mio...

User avatar
bohemian dawntreader
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2007 10:37 pm
Location: NC

Post by bohemian dawntreader » Sun Nov 11, 2007 9:20 am

Don't ask what Burningman can do for you...ask what you can do for Burningman! ROFL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i am going as JFK!!!!!!
(nude, ofcourse!
What spirit is so empty and blind, that it cannot recognize the fact that the foot is more noble than the shoe, and skin more beautiful than the garment with which it is clothed?

User avatar
Posts: 574
Joined: Mon Sep 04, 2006 9:25 pm
Burning Since: 2003
Location: Sometimes Here, Sometimes There

Post by Clar-i-ty » Mon Nov 12, 2007 7:25 am


How many ethnic groups can you slur in one post? Quite a few apparently.

User avatar
Posts: 152
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 11:27 am

Post by Rocket75377 » Mon Nov 12, 2007 7:47 am

Quips about last year were better last year.
I am the people your parents warned you about.

"How would Horatio Alger have handled this?"

Posts: 744
Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2007 3:33 pm

Post by erri2000 » Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:50 pm

This is what Quetzalcoatl, the Aztec sky and creator god, had to say about the "American Dream" theme:

"The whole American continent is represented by an eagle or condor. It (America) has been called to take the torch for these times. One wing represents the physical and the other the material. The spiritual wing must continue to lift. When balance comes of both wings, then America will come unto it's own bringing the spiritual and material resources together."

Sounds like this guy needs to get with the times.
It is alot like sex,
Some people just don't get it

Part of Shock the Karma Conglomerate

Post Reply

Return to “2008 Theme”