on burning man

I’m in the middle of the conversation on Facebook about Burning Man. I asked a humorous question: Do fat people go to Burning Man?, because every time I see photos of people at Burning Man, they’re always svelte models or skinny dudes or guys wearing Mad Max/steampunk clothing. A woman I know from high school (who had just gone to Burning Man) responded, and I kept asking her questions. One question I asked was (again, humorously), “Did you do drugs? Are you on drugs right now?” Trying to joke around, but I guess deep down I was curious. And she said, “What happens at Burning Man stays at Burning Man.”

To which I said, “So you did drugs then.”

And she repeated herself, and subsequently deleted all of her comments in that Facebook thread.

Now, look, we can talk sociology and why a bunch of rich, attractive people would spend lots of money to sit out in the desert and take a bunch of drugs, but let’s not mystify the goddamn thing. There’s nothing mysterious about Burning Man. There’s some crazy stuff out there, some weird sculptures and people dancing with hula hoops, but it’s basically kids doing drugs. I mean, why else would you watch a giant stick figure get burned down unless you were high as a kite? Who would do that sober? Maybe some of your weirder cousins, but other than that, people on drugs.

There’s nothing wrong with this (unless harm is involved, of course). But why does a gathering of people have to become this transcendental thing? Why can’t we just be happy with each other? Why does it have to be “bigger” than that? I love theatre, and I practically think of theatre as a religion of sorts, but I don’t think there’s a mystery to theatre. It’s people on stage pretending to be other people. That’s all it is! The audience buys into it, and we’re all good. There’s no mystery!

My point really being: if you say mysterious stuff like, “What happens at Burning Man stays at Burning Man,” you’re basically saying you did drugs. Just like when you say, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” it means you drank a lot, gambled, and probably slept with a prostitute. I mean, you wouldn’t say that if you went to a salad buffet and then off to bed at 9pm, would you?

NOTE: I have never been to Burning Man (or Vegas for that matter), nor will I ever go to Burning Man, for I am a cantankerous old fart.

By Josh

I'm the guy who owns this site, ya dummy.

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