30 Days of Burning Man – Day 1 The basics

Posted: July 27, 2012 in Burning man, photography
Tags: , , , , ,

Day 1 – The Basics

This year there is a possibility that there will be a much higher percentage of newbies heading to the desert so I thought I’d spend the 30 days before the gates open throwing out some information, some images and a little bit of wisdom, advice and snark about the place I love so much. These posts will be generally directed at Burning Man virgins but hopefully some of you old dogs out there will contribute through comments or get some enjoyment out of them as well. So here we go.  .  I’ll include at least one photo from Burning Man each day and once a week I’ll do nothing but photos.  I hope the posts are sometimes helpful and also enjoyable, enjoy ~ ZD Blue


The Basics

So what is Burning Man?  You’ll get as many answers to that question as you will get descriptions of what it is like to fall in love.  I often use the line that it is a naked, pagan, art festival in the desert.  I use it as a line, a shield if you will to deflect off people who I really don’t want to have a deeper discussion with about Burning Man.  You see most people have only heard a little about the festival and then it has usually been from someone who has never been there.  People typically think that the event is nothing but a drunken, drug addled party in the desert and naked, they always know there is nudity at Burning Man.

The interest and direction most people in the United States take in regard to Burning Man seems to me to be more of a reflection of how uptight the US is concerning anything different or unusual.  In America we also have an obsession with nudity and sex and want anything involving either to be dirty and inappropriate.  For those who show a little deeper interest in Burning Man I explain to them how far from the truth my little phrase or the default world’s ideas about Burning Man truly are.

First, here is a link to the Burning Man website, yes Virginia there is an organization that directs this event, sells the tickets, etc… there website is:  http://www.burningman.com/


The man – yes there is a man that is burned at the festival, he is referred to in this highly creative community by this creative name.

Burners – us, the people that attend Burning Man.  There are levels to this but we’ll talk about that later.

The Org – the people that administer and run the event.

The playa – the area where the event takes place, an ancient lake bed in the Black Rock Desert.

Playa name – the name you use on the playa, sometimes it’s self-created, sometimes the universe just creates it for you, sometimes you get stuck with one by someone else, hopefully it’s a name that allows you to embrace your true self and be just a bit freer on the playa than you are in your regular life.

Black Rock City – the city that sprouts up on the playa during the event, often abbreviated to BRC.

Gerlach – refers to Gerlach, NV the nearest “city” to the event.

Virgin – a first time attendee to Burning Man

Rangers – really helpful volunteer type folk who are NOT law enforcement but help out at the event.  Just a note there are a lot of cops at the event, sheriff, state police and federal BLM folks.

Bacon – the most delicious pork product in the world, yes, dumb asses bacon is bacon but it’s the unofficial, official food of the event so deal with it.

Snark – a lot of what I just said about Bacon, or was it?

Home = playa

Default world – the place you are when you are not home.

READ THE SURVIVAL GUIDE on Burningman.com!!  An absolute necessity for anyone coming to the event for the first time.

  1. […] moment many, many times because of the confusion that exists in the general public over what Burning Man really is all about. In this particular instance I was sitting in my mother’s kitchen back east with two of my […]

  2. 13pink says:

    This is fun!! Love this pic too!! Will be there again this year!! Excited!!

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