September 30, 2012
Well, This Is Different
Annual Chamber Awards and Board Installation Luncheon
Also recognized were the Desert Hot Springs Women's Club as Non-Profit Of The Year, and Ocean Springs Tech as Business Of The Year.
It looks finished to me, top to bottom. Well, except maybe for those mailboxes.
Parachute Jump Onto The Playa With A GoPro
After he lands on the playa, he lets the camera run while he gathers up his chute and chats with another jumper and a couple of other Burners, so if you don't want to see that you can stop it after he lands.
The satellite photo of the Man, showing the Circle of Regional Effigies. The regional effigies were burned on Friday night. On Saturday, when the Man is burned, a cordon is set up at about the distance of the regional effigies. Ordinary Burners, such as myself, are not permitted within that cordon until the entire structure of the Man has collapsed during the Burn. The people who get to go inside the cordon are fire dancers, a few authorized individuals (like professional photographers), and fire safety personnel. I suppose there is another inner cordon where only the pyrotechnicians and safety personnel are allowed.
At the Burn itself, people pack up close to the cordon, but farther out from that is another circle, and that's formed by the art cars/mutant vehicles. It's about 200 feet back from the official cordon. I don't know if there is a real, written rule that sets that distance for art cars, or if it's just tradition, but it's been consistent from year to year. So you've got this ring of art cars - and 10 or 15 feet behind that is a ring of art cars, and behind that a ring of art cars, and behind that a sort of loosely scattered ring of art cars - and then you finally get to dark, open playa.
The art cars engage in a ritual that is not too different from mating season, except there seem to be only males - i.e., the ones who put on displays and show off. This is the night when they roll out laden with their full crew and friends. Their propane tanks are fully pressurized. The diesel tanks on their generators are topped off, and they are ready to put on their best fire, light and sound display. It doesn't matter that ten feet away is another art car putting on its best fire, light and sound display, because tonight is the Burn. Everyone pushes everything to the limit. The result is a cacophonous show with overlaid soundtracks and lighting that shifts as quickly as lightning from blackness to full daylight.
Out in the middle of the circle, of course, the Man stands, raises his arms, shoots fireworks, burns and kicks off two rolling fireballs, eventually collapsing into a hot, hot bonfire. And if that's what you want to see, those videos are easy to find on the internet. But for me, the show is back there in those art cars. So what I did was just turn on the GoPro and walk through those rings, completing at least one full circuit while the Man burned. Then, with the cordon down, I walked up to the fire itself, where Burners are circling it in a counter-clockwise direction. I edited out very little, so the end result is about 90 minutes long. It will not win any videography awards.
0:00 - All quiet on the playa before the Burn.
0:33 - A few art cars and people forming up the circle around the Man early.
1:00 - Genuine fire truck, not an art car.
2:34 - El Pulpo Mecanico.
4:21 - The Man has raised his arms.
4:30 - The fire dancers are out there, but we don't have a good view of them.
10:19 - A general hue and cry - the fireworks have started. The Man begins to burn. You can sometimes see one or two drones buzzing around the fire.
15:43 - The first fire ball. The Man is engulfed.
16:25 - The second, much larger fireball. The entire structure becomes an inferno.
22:18 - The first fire tornadoes form and the Burners love it.
24:52 - Some unspent fireworks ignite.
25:47 - Robot Heart.
28:27 - I'm sure this is a Lutheran Church from Iowa.
30:44 - The crowd cheers. This probably signals that the Man has fallen, but in this video the glare of the fire blocks out all detail.
38:50 - Another cheer - probably a collapse of a major part of the Man's pedestal.
45:35 - The remains of the Man continue to burn. Fire tornadoes are still forming.
47:30 - I spot Red in the crowd. He lives in Sky Valley, and you may have seen him out and about in DHS or Palm Springs. He has been going to Burning Man for many years, but this is the first time I've actually seen him at BM.
48:37 - The Man's pedestal collapses.
54:03 - Heart Deco.
54:53 - El Pulpo Mecanico again - I've made a 360° circuit of the art cars.
56:18 - That couple who I highlighted in a separate video.
59:09 - Bunny car with go-go dancers - sorta?
1:01:50 - Blue laser light goes directly into the lens of the GoPro for an interesting effect.
1:05:37 - I begin to head for the burning remains of the Man and on the way realize that the barrier is down and we can go right up to the fire itself.
1:07:17 - I arrive at the fire which is (could you guess?) VERY hot. I have some concerns about the functioning of the camera, but it rolls on without a glitch.
1:07:44 - Note the uniformed firefighters stationed around the fire. There are too few to prevent any fool who wants to try to jump over burning embers. Probably their role is to try to extinguish any costumes that burst into flames.
1:11:16 - Somebody tosses something into the fire. I didn't know about this tradition.
1:15:55 - Drummers sitting on the edge of the fire.
1:18:12 - I begin to make my way from the fire back to the art cars, where the party continues.
1:22:38 - Death Star.
1:23:55 - Man toasting marshmallows in a woodburning stove that hangs off an art car.
1:29:52 - BRAT.
1:30:00 - Monkey spanking.
Michael Holden's Burning Man Photos
This Is Not The Onion
Hunters in Sweden use cinnamon buns as bait to draw wild boar out of the woods and into the sights of their guns. "But local officials warn that the practice, while increasing the chances of a successful hunt, it increases the risk that the boar suffer from weight problems and poor dental hygiene."
The Lost & Found Files
Burning Man Lost & Found has begun to post photos from lost cameras on the playa. Always an interesting way to see ordinary life at Burning Man: