The drop of a dubstep song and the scent of tequila: Las Vegas. A place where they pump extra oxygen into the casinos and clubs to keep you wide awake and dissipate the scent of cigarettes. I called it “home” for less than two years, but sometimes I feel I lived two decades inside them.
I like to believe that my life in Las Vegas made me a better person. It taught me so much about human interaction, the highs and the lows of life, and how you never know exactly what somebody else’s personal struggles are, no matter how perfect their makeup or how thick their wallet is. Living and working in Las Vegas was a study of the human condition – and how I can make someone’s day or night tremendously improved by my influence. Continue reading Right Place, Right Time→
So my resolution this year is about writing. It’s about this blog becoming an actual platform for the stories of my experiences that have informed my philosophies on life – personal & political & anything between. As I’ve said many times: the only thing I truly feel like an expert in are my own experiences and my reactions to them. By articulating them here, I may be able to find a way to share what knowledge I’ve unearthed through pursuing love, through enduring pain, through aspiring to be as fearless as possible and my ever-growing need to embrace doubt and truth as recklessly as possible. Maybe these stories will be useful or inspiring, either to others or simply reflecting back at myself.
So I promise 24 stories this year. Two a month. There are days when I feel that I could write entire novels of my life, and other days when the lake of inspiration is dry as a bone, but over this year, I can do 24 pieces of this puzzle which forms my personal picture.
Anais Nin said it best: “We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.” — I’m taking that to heart this year.
So I’ll start with this past year. 2013 was an exciting year of my life. To be honest, pretty much every year since 2007 has been a progressive attempt to top the previous one in terms of challenging myself, embracing new experiences or diving further into what I’m capable of. Continue reading Twenty Thirteen→
Half-written blog posts litter my “drafts” folder. It’s not like I don’t write, I just never write enough on one subject to feel it deserves to be posted on my blog, so it ends up being a post on Facebook or a comment. This habit needs to stop, this blog is a place for my collected thoughts, but it’s not collecting anything but dust lately. Virtual dust.
I just spent the Thanksgiving holiday in Boston and New Hampshire with my family and friends back East. After eight days, I flew from the East coast back to the West, but instead of my residence of Las Vegas or my home-of-the-heart, Los Angeles, I came to San Francisco for a little vacation from my vacation. I’m being hosted by a sweet-hearted lover and am enjoying the city by way of Vespa and BART.
I left Black Rock City exactly two weeks ago. That’s enough decompression for now, time to share some of the experience. This is by no means all-encompassing – so much occurred that I have no words for, so much exists only there, and everybody’s experience is completely different. This was mine.
I’ll start with the basics: Burning Man is a week-long annual event held in the Black Rock Desert in northern Nevada. For event details, I’d refer you to Wikipedia or the official website. I was attending for the first time, with a number of veteran Burners. My camp was primarily friends of mine from Los Angeles, and we were a registered theme camp called Steampunk Saloon. We had a pretty badass promotional flyer designed by the even more badass Art Lazaro.
Now, as one of my favorite first-burn blog entries already tells it: Civilization as we know it has ended and 50,000 survivors came out to the desert to throw the biggest party the world has ever seen. This is the Black Rock Desert. There was nothing here. Hundreds of people showed up pre-event to start making the skeleton of the city, complete with road signs, greeter booths, Center Camp and lots and lots of Porta-Potties. By the way, dear people, some of whom I actually know, THANK YOU, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Continue reading Burning Man 2012→
I’m leaving for Burning Man in less than 12 hours. A large trailer is filled with my belongings – from camping gear to food to things with which to make art and costumes with which to be art.
It’s actually my first Burn. I’ve spent a large portion of my life, both as child and adult, going to festivals around the country – nudism, art, yoga, neo-paganism, psychedelics, electronic music, fire-spinning, hippie drum circles – none of this is new to me. 50,000 people practicing leave-no-trace radical self-reliance in the desert? That part’s new.
I’ve been partying with Burners forever. Black Rock City is a home I knew I had before I’ve even been there and before anyone told me it will be. I’m thoroughly prepared in the necessary senses.
I’m in need of a whirlwind right now in my life, I feel. I need to be swept off my feet, and this is just the event to do it.
I’m camped with a bunch of my LA friends at our very own Absinthe-swiggin’ Steampunk Saloon.
I have a camera, I hope I remember to take pictures.
See you on the other side.
“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.” – Anais Nin