Virgin Burner concerned BM is getting too big

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LLQchasm
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Virgin Burner concerned BM is getting too big

Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:46 am

Hi,

I have never been to Burning Man, but I have survived for weeks at a time out in the desert southwest in much the same way Les Stroud (from the popular survivorman tv show) has done with the exception that I do keep a laptop with me, a solar panel and a wireless card for such things as this forum and running my business from my truck out in the desert.

I'm attracted to the ideas behind the event, especially this year's theme because I jumped off a cliff a little over 4 years ago and left civilization behind with no safety net. I just got tired of the rat race working an overnight shift for 25 years and said to hell with punching a clock and started my own business in software and life has been very crazy since then from lawsuit threats coming from corporations to meeting famous people in small theaters. I'm connected to civilization intellectually, but physically disconnected to a large extent and homeless since I got rid of everything that was not necessary to stay in business during the economic downturn of 2008. As such, my situation is highly original where I'm functioning legally as an LLC as a homeless person. In the east it would be impossible to do this, but there is lots of BLM land in the west and for weeks at a time I never see a soul. It has been very strange and wonderful living this way where I no longer have a TV or connection to the media outside of internet and the negative vibes that I've accumulated for decades of interaction with other people oppressed by their jobs have seemed to wash away. I've met a lot of interesting people along the way, from Slab City to OCF, From Vancouver, BC to Miami. In the last 4 years I have "lived" in 47 of the 50 states of the USA.

While I really like the ideas behind Burning Man, I'm concerned that it has just become too big. The first 3 tiers of tickets sold out in the first day (not sure if that's normal). I had a chance to attend in 2008, but passed it up because I wasn't prepared to contribute on such short notice. I ran into some people at the Darling ranch across from the Oregon Country Fair who said that I should go because of the originality of my life and that I could teach others how to escape the system, but I just have the feeling that because this event is so big, it would be so much effort as to be take the fun out of it. Since I've never been to this event, I can't say this is so and am really looking for good contrary opinions why this isn't a waste of time / money... Some of the best times that I've had were in Eugene, OR with a small group of people...

Thanks.

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:41 am

Welcome. Don't let the ticket stampede throw you off. Just go. If you don't like it we wont' make you come back.

Burning Man was only 21,000 or so when I started to go. 25,000? I'd have to look it up. Even then it was too big for some people. It has since doubled in size, and yes, I can tell. You won't get the solitary dawn very often. It is loud and active all the time somewhere in the city. However, that has a strange charm in itself. Still, I keep my experience small and intimate by choosing where I go and which camps to hang out in. So basically I am hanging out with a small group of people.

Don't let the size put you off if you haven't been. BRC is still unique and fascinating. Don't be fooled for a minute though, it is a city now, the 5th largest in Nevada in that week. There is a share of asshats and fools and thieves, but they are the minority. The weekend gets weird and annoying.

Buy the ticket, take the ride.

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:10 am

[quote="AntiM"]There is a share of asshats and fools and thieves, but they are the minority. The weekend gets weird and annoying.[/quote]

That's kind of what I'm worried about. At OCF on the last day, the camp was raided by thieves and several camps at Shady Rest suffered losses while we were away at Darling ranch. It looked like an organized operation because with that much stuff missing, they must have come in with trucks under the guise of camp maintenance. Since I live out of my truck, a loss like that could put me out of business and force survival without it.

The other thing I've been hearing about is the rise of fascist law enforcement attending the event. It is a phenomena that goes with population increases.

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:27 am

There is theft, but most of it can be deterred by the usual "lock your shit up" advice. There are rumors of organized bike thieves, but I've never heard of a bust for it. Bikes do get stolen, even one of our trikes took a short stroll by itself (we found it abandoned, it sucks (08)). If you lock your truck on Burn Night, you should be alright. I did have two poles and a rope walk off my project on Burn Night last year, but I didn't try to secure them (we found them too). I will this year. The atmosphere is one of trust, hence easily abused.

Fascist police forces? I scarcely notice them. In fact, I wave or chat with them. But then I'm not serving booze to minors, or trying to score party favors, or doing anything abnormally stupid. All a matter of perspective. Most of the popos want to be there and are unhappy when forced to do their jobs. They have a freaking wait lits to attend!!! Apparently the Stupid Quota got a little high last year. Statistics for actual arrests are remarkable low for a population of that size. Tickets? Pretty low too, unless you're the one on the receiving end.

Others will have a far different view than I do. Heck, one year we left our video camera out on the cot and no one touched it. But we lock up our booze.

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:39 am

[quote="AntiM"]They have a freaking wait lits to attend!!! Apparently the Stupid Quota got a little high last year.[/quote]

Which quota? The one inside the Burning man event or the one outside Gerlach / Empire?

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:42 am

??? Not sure what you mean?

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:44 am

Well the wait list for the cops can be interpreted either way. Either the quota outside BM in Gerlach keeps them on the job in town away from the event (hence the waiting list) or they think all the action is at BM and their quota is there.

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Post by tamarakay » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:45 am

the cost of the event, the remote location, the no commercial vendors, that seems like it would decrease the kinds of theft the op talks about huh? I mean, thefts of convenience happen i suppose, the "borrowing of bikes" etc. i can definately see unsecured booze being too much of a temptation, but with all the factors i listed it seems petty thieves would have had to spend too much money to get there to get much benefit out of taking your stuff. From what i've read, not making things too convenient seems to cover it?
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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:52 am

I suppose the reason why I want to go is because I turn 50 shortly before the burn.

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:55 am

LLQchasm wrote:Well the wait list for the cops can be interpreted either way. Either the quota outside BM in Gerlach keeps them on the job in town away from the event (hence the waiting list) or they think all the action is at BM and their quota is there.
I assume you realize "quota" is a joke? Town is so small that any obvious lawbreakers get busted just because all the law enforcement use the only motel on the only through street and everything happens in front of their noses.

Traffic tickets in the small towns (Nixon, Wadsworth) are the Tribal Police and they do watch the speed like hawks. If you're stupid enough to speed, and have anything you should not out in the open, well, that has always been the case. A large population works to your advantage, no one catches all the fish in the pond do they?

One reason there is a lot of bitching about the cops is ... this is eplaya. Less than one percent of the attendees use this board. Folks with complaints head straight here, so the bitching-to-actual-experience ratio is radically skewed.

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:57 am

tamarakay wrote:the cost of the event, the remote location, the no commercial vendors, that seems like it would decrease the kinds of theft the op talks about huh? I mean, thefts of convenience happen i suppose, the "borrowing of bikes" etc. i can definately see unsecured booze being too much of a temptation, but with all the factors i listed it seems petty thieves would have had to spend too much money to get there to get much benefit out of taking your stuff. From what i've read, not making things too convenient seems to cover it?
Tool boxes and pricey generators have been targeted. The consensus is that could be dirtbags who are funding their trip, or locals who are in on the cheap tickets. Still, keeping things locked up deters theft.

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:01 am

Here's the thing: it is easy to concentrate on the negatives. Easy to oversell the positives. Bit so worthwhile to go figure it out for yourself.
I've been going for ten years, I am addicted. I moderate eplaya so I'm thinking about the event daily. So my best advice is just go. Be prepared, don't overthink it, and have a happy burn. If stupid/bad shit happens, roll with it. Life is too short to stay home.

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:01 am

[quote="AntiM"][quote="LLQchasm"]Well the wait list for the cops can be interpreted either way. Either the quota outside BM in Gerlach keeps them on the job in town away from the event (hence the waiting list) or they think all the action is at BM and their quota is there.[/quote]

I assume you realize "quota" is a joke? Town is so small that any obvious lawbreakers get busted just because all the law enforcement use the only motel on the only through street and everything happens in front of their noses.

Traffic tickets in the small towns (Nixon, Wadsworth) are the Tribal Police and they do watch the speed like hawks. If you're stupid enough to speed, and have anything you should not out in the open, well, that has always been the case. A large population works to your advantage, no one catches all the fish in the pond do they?

One reason there is a lot of bitching about the cops is ... this is eplaya. Less than one percent of the attendees use this board. Folks with complaints head straight here, so the bitching-to-actual-experience ratio is radically skewed.[/quote]

I thought you were serious about the quota, but that it was a quota for Burning Man, not Gerlach, but got confused because who wants to be in Gerlach when BM is happening. Cops are human too.

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:02 am

For some reason the quote function doesn't work on this forum...

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:05 am

Go to your profile and enable your BBCode. You can also do it post by post.

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:09 am

AntiM wrote:Go to your profile and enable your BBCode. You can also do it post by post.
Thanks.

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:32 am

I find the idea of a "gifting economy" interesting because of my lifestyle. Most people have bought into the "American dream" of owning a home, etc... but I rejected that idea. You can't take it with you after death and that sort of attachment just allows the system to get their hooks into you to turn you into their slave. In part, I live out of my truck with a solar panel attached because taxes are so high and there is no deduction for paying rent. The solution is to live out of your truck, and then the trips (gas) you pay for in the course of business becomes a legal tax deduction. I did this going from software conference to software conference across the country and had a trailer until early 2009, but sold it to stay in business. Fortunately business has been turning around, but I still pay double social security (self employment tax). I am familiar with the business environment of Nevada (where I have my LLC).

When transacting business using US treasury notes, the string attached is your freedom. But there is the freedom to contract and as long as US currency is not used, there is no tax. Most people, since the economy is improving, seem willing to hook back into the system again. I'm wary of it and would prefer to live completely separate from it, but laws have been written recently making it illegal to be outside the system (the new health care law passed by Obama & c).

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Re: Virgin Burner concerned BM is getting too big

Post by adam link » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:49 am

LLQchasm wrote:Hi,

I have never been to Burning Man,

THEN SHUT THE FUCK UP YOU STUPID FUCKING HIPPY.
god is in the data.

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Re: Virgin Burner concerned BM is getting too big

Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:54 am

adam link wrote:
LLQchasm wrote:Hi,

I have never been to Burning Man,
THEN SHUT THE FUCK UP YOU STUPID FUCKING HIPPY.
If that is what Burning Man has turned into, I'll stop wasting my time.

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:55 am

Ah, a hunter-gatherer, as it were.

The gift economy is an ideal and an illusion, although you'll find some burners live further outside the system than others. It has seeped into my life, but I always was opened-handed so it came naturally to me. Aspects of this get discussed down in Open Discussion quite a bit.

We're retired Navy, so the tax system supports our lifestyle and MyLarry has found a form of wage slavery he enjoys (heavy haul steel trucker). I was raised nomadically (again, the Navy) so having a home to nest in feels kinda good. I think the tendency toward packrat-ism is genetic, and we have it bad.

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Re: Virgin Burner concerned BM is getting too big

Post by Roberto Dobbisano » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:02 am

LLQchasm wrote:
adam link wrote:
LLQchasm wrote:Hi,

I have never been to Burning Man,
THEN SHUT THE FUCK UP YOU STUPID FUCKING HIPPY.
If that is what Burning Man has turned into, I'll stop wasting my time.

my job is done...one less patchouli sucking free-gen yoga douching chai suppository whole earth chakra brown rice lovin' hairy horde in the mix.


you wouldn't have lasted past the line at the gate anyways.
"10 principles? you cant HANDLE the 10 principles..."

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:06 am

Twas ever thus. You can't judge The Playa by the eplaya. If you're trying, you'll fail and never get it. Seriously, don't let anyone here make up your mind for you.

Fucking fuckos. You strain my love for you.

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Post by Roberto Dobbisano » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:10 am

sorry, i calls them as i sees them.


you think I'M a pain in the ass, well, the OP reeks of TWADDLE AND SILLY NONSENSE.


"I have never been to but i am going to pass judgement on...."



fuck that.
"10 principles? you cant HANDLE the 10 principles..."

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:16 am

Every newb passes judgement of some sort. I was just trying to chisel off some of the eplaya nonsense.

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Post by Roberto Dobbisano » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:23 am

you know i'm not THAT terrible, but something in the OP's tone says to me that no matter what you tell him, he will disagree based on WHAT HE DOESNT EVEN KNOW.

futile at best.


i don't mind being the bad guy, someone has to do it.


not everyone enjoys the sound of the cracking whip as it sears the flesh.


i do.

i promise to pick my fights wisely, and i think a little bitch-slapping was perfectly justified in this case.

maybe i'm wrong, but until proven otherwise, i stand where i stand.
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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:24 am

AntiM wrote:Twas ever thus. You can't judge The Playa by the eplaya. If you're trying, you'll fail and never get it. Seriously, don't let anyone here make up your mind for you.

Fucking fuckos. You strain my love for you.
I'm well aware of e-culture and how anonymity brings out behavior one would never see in person. I'm a former power lifter (almost qualified for the World's Strongest Man event) and far from being a wuss. It's usually the wusses who talk like that behind a keyboard, and I would imagine that most who attended burning man would not be able to live out in the desert as long as I have, eating bark scorpions, grasshoppers and rattle snakes to survive; its just too tough for most people to go that route. It was necessary for a while to stay alive. I didn't want to go on food stamps or welfare because I believe in what I do.

I'll wait until May. If the tickets haven't sold out, then it might be worth going, but experience tells me that when an event gets really big, it's already past its prime... sometimes its just better to start something new.

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Post by Simon of the Playa » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:28 am

i never hide.

i never run.

and i use my own name.


i suggest you sit down, shut up and drink the fucking kool-aid before you get your knickers in a twist.


you claim to be hard, and have a thick skin, well, prove it.

and dont claim to know what is unless you have been there, and done that.


selah.
Frida Be You & Me

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Post by LLQchasm » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:38 am

Simon of the Playa wrote:i never hide.
you claim to be hard, and have a thick skin, well, prove it.

and dont claim to know what is unless you have been there, and done that.

selah.
I'm well past the age of needing to prove anything. This thread was about seeking information as to whether it would be worth going. I thank all who have answered.

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Post by AntiM » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:38 am

It won't sell out.

There's always the regionals, which would make for an interesting summer of travel.

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Post by Liz Estrada » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:38 am

experience tells me that when an event gets really big, it's already past its prime... sometimes its just better to start something new.

yeah, you go do that...
"larry was better"

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