Burning Man in Oakland Next Week.

3 07 2009

Michael Christian’s Bone Arch at Burning Man 1997.

I remember this year. 1997 was the first, and God-willing, only time that Burning Man was moved to the Hualapai Playa. The local sheriff’s department pulled an Enron. They put armed cops in the ticket booth and collected 100% of all the ticket money as it came in. This is a shake-down, suckers! Burning Man almost went bankrupt that year.

This was a piece that Michael Christian had put together from local horse and cow skeletons. Talk about using all the parts of the buffalo. I remember all that dead grass on the playa and everyone was riding around with cow skulls that year.

I had a lot of fun in 1997, but I never want to see the Hualapai Playa ever again.

Amazing Burning Man Art Carnival in the post 9/11 / Oscar Grant / Lovelle Mixon Oakland next week.

With Michael Christian art.

And The Flaming Lotus Girls

Flaming Lotus Girls Serpent Mother 1

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And The Mutaytor

How crazy is that video?

There’s like 50 people in that band, including the bassist from Oingo Boingo, and 100 people on the stage for one song.

It’s like what Lollapalooza could be if Perry Farrell still did drugs.

Skatin’ Place. Ride the SoulTrain at Burning Man 2008.

29 04 2009

Skatin’ Place is one of my all time favorite local TV shows. D Miles has been doing his Skatin’ Place parties in Golden Gate Park on Sundays since forever and a day. He also produced his own public access TV show for 7 (!) years till he was fired for basically asking some straight forward questions that needed to be asked, like why did you guys just move the studio to a Market Street location where the rent is around $12,000 a month instead of moving to a city owned building off the beaten path where the rent could have been $1 per year?

I don’t know, I live in the real world with real bills and it’s crucial if you want to survive in this city that you know how to live within your means and learn to do without things that are beyond your means.

Now Public Access channel 29 is broke and has been spare changing its viewers every chance it gets. I still like and support some of the shows on there, but no way in Hell I can get behind a bailout of that station. Time for Access Channel 29 to die-off like the dinosaur that it is.

But D is still cutting new episodes of Skatin’ Place and he still Burns!

I love it when I see OG’s that still get excited by Burning Man. It’s pretty trendy for jaded hipsters to bash on Burning Man these days, when they’re not getting American Apparel stores and American Apparel jobs kicked out of the Mission.

As long as D is still making new Burning Man Skatin’ Place videos I will give them airtime.

Burning Life Aquatic Man.

28 04 2009

DPW blue submarine and home base 1

I’ve seen this DPW Blue Submarine around the neighborhood before. It’s indigenous to The Outer Sunset but this is the first time I’ve seen it docked out in front of what looks like its homebase.

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Check out the rust on that submarine. The fog out here will eat cars and fire hydrants alive.

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The Outer Sunset Has FREE Curbside Parking Right By The Beach.

25 03 2009

free parking at the beach

How beautiful is that?

I grew up in Hawaii and San Diego so I grew up around this happy-go-lucky, tropical, party beach culture and was kind turned-off and a little frightened by Ocean Beach when I first moved here. Most of the time it’s really foggy and overcast. Like if London and Russia combined forces to bioengineer the most depressing beach possible. Anyone touching the water had bodysuits, homeless people constantly swimming MUNI upstream to die alone, and Elliot Smith haunted that walkway.

Guys walking by themselves.
Wearing sunglasses and staring at the ground.
Thinking about all the mistakes in their life.
As they walked past tagged-up dead beached whales.
Before being jacked-up from behind.

It was kind of a downer beach.

But I discovered quickly that even on foggy summer days the beach was beautiful at night. I could open any window of my house and hear it all night. I could hear any car that drove by me from at least a few blocks away, but I could hear the ocean all night.

And on sunny weekdays this place is a beautifully eerie and deserted rust bucket. I love it.

This is The Great Highway.

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I was here when the Burning Man People had a free art opening for the first of their new bonfire pits last year.

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It was WINDY AS FUCK. I remember almost Burning Man dust storm conditions with this Crazy Turrets Homeless Dude drawn to the fire that would not shut up. Unsuspecting couples would be walking up to the fires from out of the dust storms and thinking that Crazy Turrets Homeless Dude was part of the local Burning Man charm without realizing that local rangers had told Crazy Turrets Homeless Dude to shut up while other people were giving speeches at least 3 times now and it wasn’t working. There was instant blind cooperation among strangers and the local Sunset beach cops busting DPW guys for drinking on the beach. Proof that The Universe really does have a sense of humor. I thought it was a nice effort on the Burning Man People’s part, but honestly I wondered how long the fire pits would survive before being tagged-up or destroyed. But check it out now that it’s completed in 2009 –

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Nowhere near the level of trash that used to collect around the old city bonfire pits and no tagging! That’s amazing.

I like this partially bloomed flower / acorn design the best.

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That 45-degree angle is a great design and is a hell of a lot more practical in blocking the wind, which is essential to starting and maintaining your fire under windy as fuck conditions. I was cruising by at 4:20 and there was already a fire going in the acorn fire pit with girls playing music and dancing nearby.

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ocean beach 10

Good times.

Also, by Burning Man People I mean a combination of The Black Rock Arts Foundation and Burners Without Borders. I just like referring to them as Burning Man People, which has a nice ring to it. Like Children of The Corn.

Serpent Mother. FREE art opening on Treasure Island.

11 03 2009

Flaming Lotus Girls Serpent Mother 1

The new art piece from The Flaming Lotus Girls is this amazing 168 foot stainless steal snake. It has a hydraulic joy-stick control panel that moves around her 20-foot neck and head that they encourage the audience to play with.

Flaming Lotus Girls Serpent Mother 8

This was their free art gallery opening on Treasure Island on Saturday night. An inside art gallery opening so minus the flames that you would see on the playa. Some people might call this large-scale art, but lately I’ve been thinking The Serpent Mother has got to be the single coolest action figure in America right now (or at least the coolest action figure in America till next year’s Burning Man)

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If I were an eccentric millionaire type, I would be commissioning my favorite Burning Man artists to build me pieces like this all the time. And then I’d hire David Best to build me a mansion that I could store them all in. And let’s not forget my master plan of buying up old missile silo bases and storing my extra Burning Men in them to survive the coming apocalypse. I’m telling you, when I win the lottery I already have a plan on what I’m going to do with the money. I’m going to buy up Burning Man art pieces like other people buy comic books.

And in the warehouse area next door there was a huge loading dock area with the Homouroboros – the spinning barrel of monkeys tree.

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Burning Man Batcave 2

Here’s a video of the Homouroboros from Burning Man 2007.

And the rest of the warehouse was a loading dock area for Burning Man art cars and other art projects.

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You can see the blueprints of an art car on the side of this bus.

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It’s like if Batman was into Burning Man, this would be his Batcave.

Generations from now archeologists are going to have a field day trying to document and explain all of these amazing large scale Burning Man artifacts that they are going to find hidden away.