While you all are frantically packing to head off to the desert this week I've been enjoying my personal calmness with the decision to not join you... coupled with a bit of sympathy anxiety, but still, I have some time to reflect I suppose. Watching post after post from people essentially totally losing it over tickets, packing, DJ gigs etc seems pretty normal but the ones that get under my skin the most are those of you oozing with relief to "finally go HOME."
This idea has always bothered me, people calling Burning Man "HOME." Burning Man is not your home... you are your home, your "default" life is also your home. It makes me a bit sad that the whopping week (sometimes longer) of Burning Man is the pinnacle of some people's entire year, so much so that it's HOME to them. In your entire year... only 7 days you feel at home. I have to question what it is that's holding you back in your "default" life so that one week in the most hellacious, yet albeit awe inspiring places is so paramount that you call it your home?
My first year on the playa the last night I was there I ran into a new friend and I expressed how blown away I was by everything and how much I didn't want it to end. He replied to me and told me that Burning Man really never ends, there's so much that goes on year round that you don't have to worry about this week ending since we get to take everything we get on the playa and take it home with us. That's home. Where you make it, where YOU are. Burning Man isn't your home, it's merely a catalyst for you to create your own home. And what is the point of Burning Man if you don't take what it gives you, what you give it, what you learn, what you forgive or forget with you off that desert road? Burning Man should be thought of as a tool for progression, it's a difficult experience, and it is what you make it. But if you're waiting all year long to "go home" you're doing it wrong.
I won't be headed out to the dust this year, I genuinely question if I will ever decide to go back. I don't have any FOMO or regrets about this decision, aside from maybe missing the companionship of my friends. I know that what I gain from Burning Man I can also experience every day. I can say Hi to strangers, give someone a random compliment, or ask everyone in a bar for a Cinnamon Swirl hug if I really wanted to. I can also contribute to events and functions and our community off the playa in many ways. Yes, there will always be something special about the rigorous and unpredictable experience that is the epitome of Burning Man, but if I have to send you all off to the desert with one request it would be to please, stop calling it "home," and make a better effort (yes EFFORT, sometimes you do have to work for things you know, not this "manifestation" vampirism some of you are so akin to) to take what ever experiences you have on the playa with you and incorporate it into your daily life, and if your life represses you to the point you feel you cannot do this, then challenge yourself to change it. You are your home, you live there every day.
DJ, Artist, Model and everything else.