Thousands of Burning Man photos spill onto the internet when revellers finally get back to normalcy (and more specifically Wi-Fi) following the festival, depicting enviably hedonistic and surreal scenes in the desert.
They don’t quite do it justice though, not getting across the human connections made on the playa.
An AskReddit sought to address that today, with users being asked for ‘cool/fun/crazy’ stories they have from there time out of, or ones they’ve heard from others.
They didn’t disappoint, with tales involving fire-breathing dragons, grilled cheeses and a lot of drugs and nudity:
‘I once traded 25 glow sticks for a ride on a small airplane that was nearly out of gas, flown by a crazy guy who I later saw drive a 16 penny nail through his d*ck, in to a 2*4, on stage in front of a couple hundred people.’ – Dronephotographyfan
‘Not my story, but a girl who was a big burner told me her favorite Burning Man story once:
She decided to wander out onto the playa one night for a little alone time. After a while of walking around in the dark she comes upon what looks like this portable toilet out in the middle of nowhere. She thinks to herself, “I could pee right now,” walks over to the porta potty and opens the door. Only it’s not a toilet. Instead there’s a guy standing behind a wooden bar top with shelves of liquor behind him. He smiles at her and says, “Welcome to the smallest bar in the world, what you like?” After the initial shock wore off, she steps inside and orders a shot of whiskey. She stayed there for a while, had a couple of drinks, thanked the bartender and then walked back to her camp.
The best part of the story is this: how long was that guy standing in that “bar” waiting for people to show up? He could’ve been out there for hours.’ – PaperClipsAreEvil
‘My favorite memory was from 2002, I think...
I had moved back to Chicago from the Bay Area and spent the year building a custom multi-seat bicycle. In my excitement to get back to the playa I drove pretty much straight through from Chicago to the gates of Black Rock City (32 hours) and they let me in a bit earlier than they were supposed to because of my Illinois plates.
So, it was dark, I drove over to where we liked to camp, threw down a tarp, an air mattress and my sleeping bag. I then proceeded to strip down and went to sleep.
The morning sun woke me up and I got out of my bag. I was totally alone. Center camp was aways off and the closest car or tent was maybe 500 yards away. Now, I’m standing there buck-ass naked and I decided to brush my teeth before I dug out clean clothes...
As I’m brushing, some random dude comes riding by on a bicycle from out of the desert (further out, away from the humanity I could see) and, as he pedals by, says with a completely straight face, “Nuthin’ say’s ‘Burning Man’ like a naked man brushing his teeth.”
I never did figure out where he was coming from or heading to.’ – adowner
‘My brother has gone a few years, and my favorite story from him is riding around the desert on acid in a firetruck that was modified to shoot flames.’ – killemyoung317
‘My friend and I were biking around one night at the Burn in in 2010, and we came across a dragon art car belching fire. It was part of a three car parked convoy, and was playing some of the best grimiest beats I’d heard all week.
Our canteens were empty but our spirits high and we were contemplating a camp trip when a man pedaled up next to us with a little cart attached to his bike. He asked us if we liked grilled cheeses. We of course said f*ck yes. He got off his bike, opened up his little cart and proceeded to make us fresh, hot grilled cheese and bacon sandwiches, with ice cold bloody marys to fill our canteens with... It was the most amazing cheese related experience I’ve ever had.’ – schnozzberrypie
‘Buddy went, did mushrooms with an old dude. Ended up sucking the old guys di*k. It was hard for him to reconcile [he wasn’t gay], but our group of friends thought it was pretty great.’ – krifter
‘The Daft Punk concert out by the trash fence was like nothing you’ll ever experience in the default world.
Honestly it blends together after awhile. After a week in the desert, meeting a guy with fennec fox in a pouch around his neck was more amazing than any amount of fire shooting art or nudity.’ – Megatron_McLargeHuge
‘A story from my friend: He arrived with lots of jewelry, one set of clothes, and a bag of weed. He was offered a drink of “water” and doesn’t remember anything else other than he woke up day or two later next to two random chicks, one with a strap-on, a sore ass, and a burning sensation when he pees. He’s planning to go back again...’ – Jsdestroy
‘I got to DJ on my camp’s art car for 8 hours straight... We were also serving gourmet grilled cheeses. We had at least two dozen people dancing with delicious sandwiches in their hands.
at one point we broad sided another art car and served the people in between the two mutant vehicles sandwiches while they danced to the music I was playing... Amazing.’ – imurdotme
‘We spent about a day and a half putting up our camp, staking down and tying the pavilions, arranging the crap inside, and so forth. We thought we had made it pretty darn secure. A windstorm midway through the festival disagreed.
Out of our group only my boyfriend and I were there at the time. We had no way to contact the rest of them so the two of us were running around like headless chickens trying to prevent everything from being blown completely away while having every orifice blasted with dust.
Another funny part was the night we all took acid. One of our friends misplaced her glasses somewhere in the camp and we spent a couple hours helping her look for them, searching over and over in the same places because our memories weren’t functioning too well. You might think it was a waste of an acid trip but I can’t remember a time before or since when I laughed so hard for so long. Possibly the most fun people have ever had looking for misplaced glasses.’ – PM_ME_UR_ICE_CREAM
‘A bunch of people in full body raccoon suits rummaging through random people’s coolers loudly at four in the morning.
A jar of mayo out on the deep Playa, with a sign reading “free mayo”.’ – xiMbd03u1
Tickets for 2016’s Burn will be available here.
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