I will never go to Burning Man. These are the reasons.
1. Communism. There’s no commerce, except for the occasional barter. Most people interact with mutual charity. I don’t want to spend a great deal of time in a place where my basic human needs (and some more complicated human needs, and some basic human desires) cannot be satisfied by the deft application of currency. Our financial and economic systems have evolved over the last couple millenia to resemble an actual working model of fairness and capitalism. I like it.
2. Hippies. There are lots of them at Burning Man.
4. Desert. The “playa,” as the expanse of nothingness in the Nevada wastelands is called by its erstwhile residents, is a goddamn nightmare. Temperatures routinely reach 100. Night time is usually blessed by freezing temperatures, but that doesn’t make up for the staggering, inhospitable wilderness. It’s dry, dusty, grimy and is far away from civilization. Here’s a map. Look for the nearest town. Keep looking. Yeah, it’s that far away.
5. Guerilla Street Theatre. I don’t really know what that is, but I think I know what it might be, and it scares me.
6. Everybody There is High Or Drunk The Whole Time. That’s a probably exaggeration, but if it’s even remotely close to being true, I don’t want to be there. I don’t mind the occasional drink myself, and I don’t mind when people use low-impact recreational drugs around me, but I do not want to spend eight days in close proximity to drunk, high, communist hippies in a desert.
Also, I think that the patchuli-doused, hemp-wearing, dreadlock-sucking ecosnots who get pissed off at modern civilization for using, you know, internal combustion engines, probably haven’t done all the research.
Also also, it’s pictures like this one that convince me, without doubt, that it’s a good thing the Burning Man and I will likely never meet.
So, imagine the picture above multiplied by about 10,000, spread them all over a desert, make sure they’re well-marinated in large quantities of booze and acid and take all of their clothes off. Sew in a thick thread of socialism combined with egocentric pseudoenvironmentlism, and I can think of no tapestry of humanity more fit to not have me near it.
There’s one reason that I might one day find myself at the playa, though. I like to be fair and balanced.
1. Frequent, Public Nudity. Patchuli-doused ecosnots might be intolerable as human beings, but some of them are pretty hot.