Burning Man Intensifies

Fri, Sep 23, 2022 2-minute read

I keep seeing wonderful pictures from this year’s Burning Man, and they inspired me to share a terrible one, to counterbalance. This was Sunday around peak heat (over 103F or 40C), trying to leave the desert while completely stuck in the car in a massive 15-lane traffic jam for over 4 hours, whiteout after whiteout, blasting the AC (i.e., making the world a much worse place), and praying to the Flying Spaghetti Monster that our engine wouldn’t stall. And apparently we were lucky that we were there only for such a “short” time –and covid and monkeypox free (that we’re aware of).

Burning Man is brutal. Getting ready for it took weeks (but really months). Packing up, getting there, and setting up our tent and shade structure took well over 35h. And then the Black Rock Desert is definitely not meant for human life (or any type of life, really): the highly corrosive alkaline dust gets absolutely everywhere and the heat during the day is unbearable.

And yet, despite so much discomfort, stress, lack of sleep, dehydration, hard work, and physical and mental endurance, there’s not a single doubt in my mind that I would do it again. My heart is full of love and gratitude right now. Burning Man is likely the most beautiful social experiment that humans have ever created, and I truly believe that if everyone could experience it once, the world would be a much better place