"Hope and Fear: The Future"
Burning Man 2006
"In all the town no inn was, and no bar,   
That he'd not visited to make good cheer,   
Especially were lively barmaids there..." --The Miller's Tale 
 
Wednesday: That night, I dreamed I was in an office building, watching some guy and his son try to rig a trip wire across a doorway. The string they were using was very obvious, and when a woman appeared, she was not at all fooled. The three of them all ran off together laughing. I got on a computer and sent emails to some people, really going off on how they had hurt my feelings, but after sending them I felt bad, like perhaps I'd been too harsh... I opened my eyes and saw the inside of my tent, still feeling guilty, until I realized I was at Burning Man and I hadn't been on a computer in days, so I had nothing to feel guilty about. 

It was just after 5 AM. It was still dark out. I could hear a man and a woman speaking nearby, but I couldn't make out what they were saying. I soon heard snoring.  

I napped a little longer, then got up about 6 AM. On an army cot out in the open, about 20 feet from anything else in camp, I found Spanky sound asleep. A car shaped like a big banana drove by playing loud Jamaican music. It was morning, and Mark was up making coffee for everybody. I wished I'd brought tea bags. I met a guy called Sweets, who was camping with us. Lots of people were up late. Someone said Spanky was up late, talking to people on his megaphone in some unintelligible Chinese rap-speak. They were getting ready to call the Everybody Anti-Defamation League on him. Breakfast was beef jerky, a fig bar, and vodka. 

As soon as the sun was up, people started filling up the bar. A group that might have been the Space Cowboys drove up in a big car shaped like an alligator's head, filled with music and dancing girls. Two girls were talking, and one friend said, "I would give you the labia off my lips." I met a  girl called Jesse, who was still up partying from the night before. She had nice teeth. I took off walking, and found the Iron Rose camp down the street from the Pink Flamingos and You Are That Pig Camp. I walked into their big common tent, which had lots of comfortable pillows, and somebody took me around to the individual tents ľand there was Jenn! She gave me a very warm welcome. I met Heidi, her campmate. We lounged around on the piles of pillows. Iron Rose's event that day was an hour of heavy metal music, but the sound system kept messing up. The heavy metal got postponed until the next day. It was hot and sweaty out.  
The lovely Colleen showed up with her boyfriend Kevin and some friends. She remembered me. Alex didn't come to the event with her that year; she went to Mexico for the week instead. Mark and I helped them put up their dome. Emory was in camp with his lovely wife Michelle. I went for a walk to try to find a friend's camp near the 7:30 Plaza. Heaven forbid they actually put up a sign or anything... I passed Porn & Eggs, and stopped at a camp called Whiskey & Insults. They gave me a shot of whiskey --and an insult-- so I gave them one of my shot glasses. I found the Whiskey & Whores Saloon down the street, and got a shot from them, too. They let me keep their shot glass as a gift. I passed a camp that made refrigerator magnets to give away, so I took one and left one of my buttons behind. I browsed through Center Camp. At Playa Info, there were no messages for me. I forgot to check what the census was.  
On the way back to the Plaza, I passed the N*U*D*E 4077's camp, so I stopped to rest for a minute. Most of the folks there seemed to be from Provo and Salt Lake City. I met a nice girl called Chinook. A girl called Gypsy came by handing out fresh loaves of bread to everybody. It was very good. Back at HOTD, I talked to a guy called Dr. Boom and his lovely girlfriend Delish. We talked about movies, comics and graphic novels, particularly "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen." I also met a nice woman called Lady Hourglass. Lisa D. showed up, and asked if I got my water. I didn't. She was the one that found the water jugs I'd forgotten and left behind the year before, and graciously offered to fill them up and bring them to the playa for me. She came by on Sunday, when the only thing in the whole campsite was the bar. ("It looked so cute!") So, she gave my water jugs to a girl in the next camp over. We went looking, and finally found my water jugs in the shade of a pickup camper.   
A couple of impressive dust devils roared through the City, and then suddenly a wall of dust opened up to the west. The wind blew the dust in, and everything got slapped to a stop. Visibility was no more than a few feet as the white-out blasted everybody and everything. The sun was reduced to a silver disk in the sky. The dust was everywhere. We dropped the sides of the army surplus tent and ducked inside for cover and to wait out the storm. Luckily, Tigger had been cooking up some taco salad, so everybody dug in. It was marvelous. 
 
Star helped a guy that happened to wander by, a little disoriented. He was dehydrated and confused, so someone flagged down a Ranger. He got taken care of. Another refugee from the white-out was a delightful blonde girl that used to be a Greeter. I asked her for some advice. She joked around a little, but then said the best thing to do was just be enthusiastic. Close to sunset, over an hour after it hit, the dust in the air seemed to go down. It was still amazingly windy. I heard it got up to 70 MPH. 
My tent did not fare well under such high winds. The structure remained intact, but the poles weren't strong enough to stay up; the whold tent flattened out under the force of the wind. I pulled the poles back into position, then used more paracord to tie the poles together so that they wouldn't bend down again. That kept my tent mostly in one piece for the rest of the week.  
After dark, the stage was getting ready to fire up. I went by Iron Rose, where I had a barbecued rib with Jenn and her friends. Back at HOTD, The band was just getting ready to start when technical difficulties ensued. I was out past midnight.
 
Introduction -- The Journey West 
 Tuesday -- Wednesday -- Thursday -- Friday -- Saturday -- Sunday 
Monday --  The Journey East -- Epilogue
 
 
 
Links:  
You Are That Pig 
 
All original content (c)opyright 2006  
by Tim Frayser 
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