The nicest megaphone on the playa


Bunny and I set out for the deep playa on Sunday afternoon. We were heading for the chill platforms, seven raised platforms with futon mattresses and cloth shades with a revolving mirrored heart in the center, to relax and kill some time. Upon arriving we found all were occupied… We rode further out into the playa and happened upon a tall triangular structure. As we rounded the corner to the open side we saw two gentlemen comfortably lying down, one with a megaphone. Just as I thought we were going to get a blast of abuse, the guy opens up with “Hello! We’ve been waiting for you…”. The volume of the megaphone was just barely audible. He said a few more very nice things that I cannot remember. We had a wonderful conversation exchanging light talk and compliments; me with my voice and him with his megaphone. I gave him his new name: The Nice Megaphone Man. I opened my backpack and dug around for something appropriate to give these fine people and came up with a chocolate pie. They accepted it warmly and almost disbelievingly. I dismounted my bicycle and went to sit with them. Sitting only feet away we continued our chat with him still talking barely above a whisper over his gentle megaphone. I couldn’t stop smiling. This encounter was one of the most memorable I’d had so far for its simple kindness and good humor. I sat and drank some water, nibbled on a snacky cake, and enjoyed the shade the structure provided. The nice magaphone man eventually curled up for a nap with his head on his companion’s belly. They looked so tranquil. It was contagious. As Bunny and I rode off, that tranquility stayed with me. We went back to the platforms, found one open, and curled up for our own nap.

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Flamethrower + Spam at Burning Man 2011


This is how I cook spam at Burning Man…

The flamethrower is a Manchester Power Jet with the gas orifice removed. Add propane, no regulator, and you’re ready to cook.

Cooking Spam with a Flamethrower

My summer vacation: What I did at Burning Man


Burning Man 2011 was my first burn. I’ve been meaning to go for 15 years but work and caring for sweetpea had kept me away until this year. I retired a year and a half ago and Sweetpea said to just go and do it.

The desert is one of my favorite places to be. I was sent to many deserts while serving in the US Army, but the Black Rock Desert in northern Nevada is unique among them. No sand for starters. Just talcum powder fine alkali dust. No plants, no animals, no washes or dry streambeds. Just flat wide open expanses that stretch for 30 to 70 miles with only mere feet in elevation difference. It is truly one of the most beautiful environments that I have ever had the privelege to visit. I was there in late July, long before 55,00 other people were there to share it at the burn. It was quieter than anywhere else I’d ever been and totally empty of everything. Nothing but lots of nothing. That all changed in early August when advance crews began to build the world’s largest temporary city.

What I did at Burning Man…

I played with my fireball generator, AKA “Fire Poofer”. I design and build propane flame effects and built this one, “Grizelda MK IV”, to bring out to the desert.

Elder Wrong, Burning Man’s own PBR guzzling Mormon missionary, manifesting his own “burning bush” through the miracle of the fireball generator. You can follow Elder Wrong and his mission at: http://ElderWrong.wordpress.com

Directing traffic on ‘A’ street. DO NOT fuck with a man with a sign, a gun, and orange hair. It’s just not a good idea…

 

Hanging out with the pretty ladies of Burning Man. This is Piney. She is one of the founders of the Booby Bar, a bar featuring two giant domes with huge pink nipples on top. Sadly, 2011 was their last year of exsitence as supporting the boobies was just too tiring and didn’t allow enough time for the supporters to experience the burn. Piney is also a member of Reno’s “Controlled Burn”, a fire conclave that features fire spinners and very large flame effects including two liquid shooters firing 20 gallons of gasoline into columns of fire reaching altitudes of 100 feet into the night sky.

Firing sunset salutes with FOGBANK, the propane & oxygen fueled sound cannon built and operated by Espressodude. The sound of the cannon reaches 180 decibels, twice as loud as an F-16 with afterburners engaged. Espressodude also served up over 50 pounds worth of Starbucks coffee beans in the form of espresso to the citizens of Black Rock City. His espresso, made with one of his two commercial espresso machines, was provided free of charge to the citizenry. His name comes from the fact that he uses his machines at home to consume up to a dozen shots of espresso per day. He is a VERY high energy individual and I can’t even begin to keep up with him…

Brushing my teeth and having it documented by Ben tang of Ben Tang Photography.

Roasting and eating midgets in Terminal City. Here I have shrunken Elder Wrong and thrown him on the barbee. We ate of his flesh but, of course, he was raised from the dead with no complications. We saved some leftovers for him which he greatly enjoyed…

Hanging out with more of the beautiful ladies of Burning Man. Here is the exquisite Miss Savannah. She handmade a wonderful pendant for Sweetpea who was unable to attend. I am honored to count her as a friend and was privleged to be able to wrap my arms around her for hugs and photos.

The pendant Savannah made for Sweetpea. So many of my friends know and love Sweetpea from my frequent mentions of her. Notice the map cast under the resin and the words “Black Rock Desert”. Thank you so much Sav. The Sweet One and I love you very much!

Dressing up for nighttime adventure. I’ll let you use your imaginations… The skirt made from a pair of US Army paratroopers trousers was graciously given to me by Quick, the beautiful Chief Warrant Officer of MASH 4207, “The Best Care On The Playa”, a medical relief camp providing comfort to the afflicted of BRC.  The gold helmet is my genuine kevlar helmet brought home from my gig in the US Army.

Cooking Spam with my 1.5 million BTU liquid propane fueled flamethrower. Knowmad provided the heat while I held my meat. Nom nom nom…

Sunset over the Flaming Lotus Girls 2011 fire art installation, Tympani Lambada.

Burning Man, something to do before you die.