What preparation made your BM all that much better?

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Ever
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What preparation made your BM all that much better?

Post by Ever » Sat Sep 09, 2006 6:36 pm

Was looking forward to hearing some ideas about what made your guys' Burning Man that much better this year as far as preparation goes. Anything from the way you prepared to what one comfort item/food made your trip.

What I personally do is keep the same packing list from previous years stored on my computer and update it year by year.

This years burn was made nice by simply stressing carrying chap stic, eye drops, and most importantly saline nasal spray. I guess they helped as far as my longevity goes and enabled much, much more exploration >:]

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skygod
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Post by skygod » Sat Sep 09, 2006 6:46 pm

i bought a nice respirator this year.
"It will seem difficult in the beginning. But everything seems difficult in the beginning."- Musashi

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geekster
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Post by geekster » Sat Sep 09, 2006 7:30 pm

Lip balm is always important for me and I brought extras and gave them to those in need. What was most important to us was not what we chose to bring, but what we chose not to. Being open to shedding tasks and structures turned out to be a good move on our part. We decided not to proceed with a couple of projects and we also decided not to set up our dome. In fact, we have decided to get rid of the dome altogether. Not dealing with that prevented setup and teardown from polluting our overall experiance this year.
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Eric
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Post by Eric » Sat Sep 09, 2006 8:55 pm

I went super crazy with ziplocks this year- normally I pack a few outfits into large ziplocks, then pull them out as needed, resealing the bag. Yep, dust still gets in.

This year every shirt, every pair of pants, every everything went into its own baggy (except for sock/undies combo bags since they both get changed at the same time). Everything stayed dust free until needed.

I stayed happy.
It's a camping trip in the desert, not the redemption of the fallen world - Cryptofishist

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Post by RINGMASTER » Sat Sep 09, 2006 9:32 pm

camel back
nasal saline spray
chapstick
cup-o-noodles


and plain ol' K.I.S.S.

by keeping it simple this year (our first year) it made it so much easier to get out and do whatever we wanted to do when we wanted to do it and not worrying about the camp while we scouted BM out for the first time.

of course, the plan is to do it completely the opposite next year, but this year all went according to plan, and we had several mulitple year burners around us remark at how well prepared we were and in many cases moreso than them.

camping is my bag.. the survival training ive had doesnt hurt either :)

cant say enough how many great people i met so thanks to everyone!

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Ron
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Post by Ron » Sun Sep 10, 2006 9:51 am

As a camp we all took the time to come up with a list of expectations, and then we stuck to them. We also took the time to discuss how we wanted to work together, how to resolve conflict, and then we practiced both before we left. Man, did that bit of preparation ever make for a much improved burn this year....

Ron

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Post by wanderingpixie » Sun Sep 10, 2006 12:24 pm

Given our circumstances (me roadtripping in NM and my boyfriend working long hours), our BM prep went relatively well this year:

A good amount of sunscreen
Plenty of water
Multivitamin and Vitamin C tablets
Heel balm (an essential!)
Spray bottles
For me - the plastic basket for my bike
Ziplocs, ziplocs, ziplocs....oh, and more ziplocs :wink:

I'm already planning ahead for next year, though. A lot of the prep for this burn was left until the last minute and I don't want to wind up doing another 5 hour shopping trip in Reno WallyMart again (don't ask! :shock:)

Next year, some kind of shelving and/or drawer space set-up would be a Very Good Idea, especially if we're in a cargo van again. My greatest gripe was always having to shift things around and go scratching around in boxes or bags looking for stuff. Methinks if everything is organized in it's own space, it'll be much easier to grab and go do something interesting, rather than spending half an hour hunting down an elusive tube of lipstick or sunscreen.

Also, a tip for those making up gift bags at home BEFORE flying to Reno for BM: never put in any matches or other flammable materials. Dopey me, thought a small box of matches would be a great inclusion into the BM gift bags (along with sunscreen/hand sanitizer/ear plugs/pens/small candies, etc. etc.) NOT a good idea - it'll piss off the TSA for sure :roll:
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Post by diane o'thirst » Sun Sep 10, 2006 12:32 pm

Stress formula vites pretty much saved the day for me. Vigourous recommend over 5-htp and Emergen-C.

Bringing sausages and red potatoes, too. Had sausage and garlic red smash potatoes for Burn Night dinner and shared with some *very* appreciative neighbours.

The 3-pack solar spotlight + attached PV panel was a hit, too. Spendy but good light and of course, solar lights are effortless.

The tri-level "dutch oven" from the Sportsman's Guide was heavy (32 pounds), took a bit of a learning curve and somewhat clunky but eminently useful and provided good food. They say you can bake in it but I didn't try that. However, it earned its way and will be coming back out with me next year.

So glad I brought my down comforter.

A case of Yo-To-Go Smoothies from Costco was another prep that more than justified its dunnage.
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diane o'thirst
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Post by diane o'thirst » Sun Sep 10, 2006 12:37 pm

wanderingpixie wrote:Next year, some kind of shelving and/or drawer space set-up would be a Very Good Idea, especially if we're in a cargo van again.
I saw several Sterilite drawer units in camps out there. It sounds like a good idea and I had a Sterilite wash basin, so we know they're durable enough for Playa use, but I heard mixed reviews of them. Some of the people I saw bringing them said they break. I'm going to bring my tools and kitchen utensils in one this year and see how it works out.

Ahhh, just when you think you have your infrastructure down, the urge to tweak and experiment riseth anew...
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stew
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Post by stew » Sun Sep 10, 2006 12:41 pm

Camelbak + vitamins + minerals = no hangover despite large amounts of Scotch.

Also, solar garden lamps over my tent's rebar are to blame that I didn't trip over them at night.

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Post by julie_c » Mon Sep 11, 2006 9:56 am

K.I.S.S.....again....less than 1 hour to set up...less than 1 hour to tear down...just packed everything in large garbage bags...threw it all back in there upon leaving...nice & easy...

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Post by Lorgasm » Mon Sep 11, 2006 10:01 am

Big Cock greeting us in SF with his 2 bikes to use. That was awesome. He could not make the burn but he was there in spirit. Thanks BC!!
BOOBIES!!!

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Dork
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Post by Dork » Mon Sep 11, 2006 10:18 am

I prepped all my food in advance - took the grapes off the vine and put them in a ziplock bag, sliced up the pineapple, made burritos and just sat them in the sun for a while before eating. I did not use a single dish and never used a stove, but still ate quite well.

The tortillas around the burritos didn't wind up having much holding strength so they fell apart when unwrapped. I will have to either work on my wrapping method for next year or just pile all the ingredients in a container next year and just have nachos grande or whatever. I actually save plastic tubs and takeout containers all year just for this. I also need to bring salami, cheese, and crackers next year.

The tent fan thing I brought didn't work worth a damn. I got MUCH more of a breeze by opening the windows a tad, even when there was little to no wind.

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Davoid
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Post by Davoid » Mon Sep 11, 2006 10:54 am

The significant food prep changes my wife and I made were to bring a bunch of her kick-ass homemade sauce, and to pre-cook the pasta most of the way & keep in ziplock bags. She was afraid the pasta would go bad in a couple days, but it didn't (or maybe we have differing standards of bad!). Can't believe I actually boiled water for pasta before. Or brought store sauce, for that matter.

Add a few fresh basil leaves from my campmate's potted plant, bought on the way at a 99 cent store (!), and we had a little bit o' heaven. By the way, even without the pasta, I took some of that basil and just smelled the stuff for a few minutes. It seemed extra-powerful out there, almost like a drug!

Next year: yeah, something with drawers sounds like a very good idea. No, I don't mean myself.

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skygod
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Post by skygod » Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:49 am

I will bet the potted basil plants will be the next big thing for next year.
"It will seem difficult in the beginning. But everything seems difficult in the beginning."- Musashi

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diane o'thirst
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Post by diane o'thirst » Tue Sep 26, 2006 11:14 pm

I'm going to bring a whole Granny Sox planted with herbs next year. I've already started with thyme and lavender. Growing some majoram, basil, cilantro, parsley and rosemary as well.
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Post by blyslv » Wed Sep 27, 2006 9:34 am

I bought a plane ticket.
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EB
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Post by EB » Wed Sep 27, 2006 10:35 am

Compartmentalizing and labeling.
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mars
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Post by mars » Wed Sep 27, 2006 10:48 am

Having specific containers for specific kinds of garbage...burnables, cans, compost, and bins to store them in. Made life clean and easy.

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Post by benenergy » Wed Sep 27, 2006 11:12 am

I didn't grow Basil out there, but this year I brought a Chia pet, actually a Chia Bart Simpson, which 'Grows a full head of hair in a week!' that I got at a garage sale. It was nice having something alive and growing in that harsh desert environment, and I ran into twin 10 year olds at the burn who I ended up gifting it to. Next year I'm bringing Magic Sproutz as gifts. Each one has a secret fortune that you see once it sproutz.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/explorer/B000A ... 78-4746349?

I'd like to figure out how to cover the art car in living things. I'd put them in a tent during the day and somehow attach them to the car at night. I might even try my hand at basil or mint.

Ben

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Post by ChiChe » Wed Sep 27, 2006 5:15 pm

Neutragena Spray on sunscreen - aerosol forumal didn't leave us oily so no dust magnet! Even sprayed upside down - so easy to reach all those bits and pieces :-)

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Dork
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Post by Dork » Wed Sep 27, 2006 5:38 pm

benenergy wrote:I'd like to figure out how to cover the art car in living things. I'd put them in a tent during the day and somehow attach them to the car at night. I might even try my hand at basil or mint.
There was a thread a few years ago, not sure if it was here or on the art car mailing list, about covering a car in grass. One person insisted it was possible by mixing up soil and grass seed, then covering the car with it and a layer of canvas. Or, something like that.

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diane o'thirst
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Post by diane o'thirst » Wed Sep 27, 2006 9:21 pm

There are, I believe, seed-and-fertilizer-embedded fabrics that can be laid on a surface (ostensibly soil), watered assiduously, and grow into a bed of grass. Or a flower garden.

Another thing to consider for a project is making a car carved out of scrap wood. I saw a wooden Porsche at either Caesars Palace or Venice in Vegas once. It would go against the DMV requirement that mutant vehicles cannot have recognizeable car parts but it would fit the theme. And since wood is malleable and can take any form you wish and have the skill to wright, consider the detail.
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Post by alienfry » Fri Oct 06, 2006 7:15 am

our shower was amazing. 4 walls, made of wood, solar powered "on" switch, had better pressure and drainage than our shower in los angeles. holy shit having an actual structure to shower in made bodywashing faster, more efficient (i got most of my showers done with less thana gallon!) and i felt REALLY clean afterwards! omg and we have a rack to put our soap and towels and clothes on. and a full length mirror. and and and it was simply a godsend.

also, we illuminated our public space and kitchen this year at night. it made it 1000 times easier to keep clean. no more midnight munchies in the darkness, rumaging, spilling things, not realizing the mess we'd be creating.
awesome oppossum

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AntiM
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Post by AntiM » Fri Oct 06, 2006 7:34 am

I saw several Sterilite drawer units in camps out there.
We did too, a few years ago and tried one for kitchen utensils. Here's an unmixed review: The drawers don't keep the dust out at all. Might work in a more enclosed environment than our open shade structure. We've also tried a "camping kitchen" box unit, same problem: dust, plus bulk. We're back to a rubbermaid tote (what does one call those big plastic boxes with snap-on lids?) and various ziplocs.

Writing "Not A Seat" on all our plastic totes which otherwise collapse under a person's weight. Sure they stack, but they make lousy benches in the long run.

Getting a heavy duty not cheap cot for general use in the shade area. Must be heavy enough for three folks to use it as a couch, perfect for daytime naps when the tents are too hot, also great if someone feels less than well, they can stretch out flat.

Couscous. Paper plates. Shelf-stable bacon. A wooden bench which rolls up for a coffee table.

New for next year: terrycloth cushions for the camp chairs, something like kitchen towels or thin pads. We had a drunken naked guest leave us a very icky "gift" in one of our chairs. Euw.

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Post by mars » Fri Oct 06, 2006 8:45 am

<<Neutragena Spray on sunscreen - aerosol forumal didn't leave us oily so no dust magnet! Even sprayed upside down - so easy to reach all those bits and pieces :-)>>

I tried some of that spray sunscreen and I didn't like it at all. Not sure if it was this particular brand...but it had alcohol in it and dried out my skin terribly...plus while spraying, it was horribly annoying for anyone in the nearby vicinity to breathe in...lastly, it seemed that a bottle didn't last very long for the money...

I'd try out the product first at home and see what you think before you stock up for the playa.[/quote]
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Post by Cabanasprings » Fri Oct 06, 2006 8:47 am

We use a futon couch in our shade structure as a couch during the day and a bed at night.

I take the top and bottom apart to use as side rails on the pick-up to help overload it and the mattress goes on top to weight it all down. We truely look like the Clampits coming to BRC.

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Post by gyre » Fri Oct 06, 2006 2:18 pm

Coppertone Sport is a non-aerosol pump.
Little dry but works.
Lubriderm makes a lotion with a 15 spf too.
A good mix.
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AntiM
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Post by AntiM » Fri Oct 06, 2006 5:34 pm

If you prefer a lighter spf for your face, try any of the Oil of Olay lotions with uv protection, spf 15. works if you're also doing the Big Ass Shade Hat. I use OoO year round, daily.

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BAS
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Post by BAS » Sat Oct 07, 2006 12:10 pm

Uhm, buying a ticket and actually going helped a lot this year.... :oops:

Shelf stable bacon was a nice impulse buy-- it made mornings nice.

I've got a list (somewhere) of stuff I want to try differently next time I can swing the time off and money. (Losing about 50 to 60 pounds of fat would help-- I'm not certain I have the willpower to achieve that one, though. :oops: )


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