Adventures with the BurningMan Power Elite!

[this is a multi-part, text-y thing. It will be interesting only if you love or hate BurningMan.]

NOTE: throughout this series, marian's writing looks like this. My writing to her looks like this. And my commentary added here, on these pages, looks like this.

I've spent a lot of time trying to figure out exactly what I don't like about BurningMan. I do this because mostly, I like it. I think the event and the underlying concept are fascinating. I've gone twice and will probably go again, even though I'm griping away right now.

[epilogue April 2000- it's quite clear to me that I won't ever be attending bman again, except under outrageous and as-yet-unimaginable circumstances.]

As often happens, someone encouraged me to complain directly to the source- maid marian, who writes the BurningMan newsletter, JackRabbitSpeaks (JRS). Why not voice my frustration to the powers-that-be, who might actually listen, right? I mean, they're all about 'radical self-expression', so they would naturally be open to my views, right? Wrong 'em, boyo!

I was spurred to write right after BM99, when I saw a disturbing message in an issue of JRS. Marian was going on at length about how important it was for volunteers to go BACK to the desert to clean up, or else the big bad BLM won't let BM happen ever again. Very persuasive, emotional pleas for people to drive back to Black Rock City, and volunteer to clean up. The next paragraph was an announcement of a big 'decompression bash' being held in San Francisco. Wait a minute! The BM people are having a party for themselves, and telling participants to go back and toil in the desert for them for FREE? Too much.

So I wrote this email to maid marian.