2009 Burning Man, by Ray Bangs

Burning Man Project T.A.Z.

journal and photos by Ray Bangs

AUG 31 - SEP 6, 2009

Hippie bonfire parties at San Francisco's Baker Beach in the 60's and 70's spurred Larry Harvey and friends to start burning a wooden man. Eventually, the beach parties grew so big and cacophonic, even San Fran couldn't handle the hoopladida, and so started a whole new dusty wave of situationist expression to their new glorious playa in the desert flats outside Reno.

Over these past thirty years or so, Burning Man has evolved into a wildly popular annual event, a dandy dada celebration of crazy, a randy revolutioning idea or many, a naked costume party, unrestrained horizons, calling out to burners of all kinds from all reaches of the globe and beyong, freaks be free, aliens and artistas, cappies and commies, with all kinds of expressions intending to burn or be burned, a glorious week of radical inclusion.

An experience forged through extreme leave-no-trace self reliance, a challenging and rewarding experiment in temporary community, daily dust storms, afternoon siestas, a strong potential for self awareness leading to an integrity check on your soul, the many gifts you give and many gifts you receive, meeting a google-load of strangers in the full sense of the word, strange yet they become instant friends, oh so much music and so many adventures, many many many miles of good walking and surreal scenery, hopefully a few mindbending experiences in the T.A.Z. (temporary automonous zone), and all culminating in the world’s biggest hippie bonfire.