Burning Man Cleanup: Dear Gate, —

In this one time at burning man by summerburkes1 Comment

It is with semi-tight shoulders we report to you that the Black Hole, our Gate home base, got a yellow on the MOOP map this year.

Yellow. Not green.

We tried. We tried so hard. We cleaned up all the big stuff and put it in the right trailers and boxes and oversaw transpo and then MOOPed our asses off. Busting dunes by hand with a rake. Digging out burn scars. Going over and over the site. Staying later than the other crews each day and using whiskey as a work tool. *burp*

C-Load came out for the weekend to do line sweeps with us. When we found out we were near the Black Hole, we strolled ahead one block to make sure we’d cleared everything. There was nothing there. One cigarette butt, maybe.

We didn’t pick up a damn thing and we even full-contact MOOPed the site — crawling on my hands and knees through some newly-formed dunes in chicken pants and a tank top, killing two birds with one stone. Skin exfoliation feels nice.

There was no doubt in our minds we’d get green. We were shocked — SHOCKED — to receive a yellow. Thirteen was so ornery about it she even got drunk on ginaritas that night and pimp-slapped a couple people with her flip-flop in the Black Rock Saloon. C-Load escorted her out and brought us a dozen roses each, so that made it better.

Only thing we can think of is that the cleanup managers mistook the border between Commissary and the Black Hole — which changed no less than SIX times during setup — or that some trash from Commissary blew over. To us, it looked like the line sweepers walked through our site without picking up hardly anything at all. But we couldn’t be everywhere at once.

However, all the managers have told us we should be exceedingly proud of our yellow. That in past years, the Black Hole has been so red they considered making up a new category: Black (of course). That it took a crew of 20 to 30 people about 4 or 5 different tries to line-sweep the DPW ghetto this season, and the ghetto got a yellow too.

We think for a crew of 3 to 6 people — this writer, Thirteen, Bloody Knuckles, and a little bit o’ Low Rent and Aristotle and Moses for a couple days there — we did well.

We almost got yellow with green stripes, even. Then when Wilde Childe went out with them to look it over and discuss our score (again), they found a tent stake that the MOOP line also missed. But hey: the “Event Horizon” (our camping area across the street) got green. It was just the Black Hole itself that scored a yellow.

More importantly, and largely thanks to the efforts of Super MOOPer ™ Bloody Knuckles … (drum roll, please) … Gate Road, the Gate site, and D-lot were all so clean that they didn’t even send a MOOP crew out to go over it. At all.

That’s right. You heard correctly.

We stenciled this on everything. Overheard this morning in the Burning Man Gerlach office: “We should totally get pink DPW shirts next year.” … “What, are we trying to out-gay the Gate now?” —

There is snow on the mountains today. Half the crew has already headed to Reno and points beyond, and we’re trying to decide if we’d rather spend money amongst the blinky lights of Reno and get overserved by Jirish Mike at the Hideout … or if we’d rather relax in Gerlach and sew clothes and be around a whole lotta no-people for one more night before the rude re-entry to civilization comes tomorrow.

Of course, as with everything, we’re flying by the seat of our pants. Hope to see you all at Decompression on Sunday.

And may we say: Even though we didn’t see hardly any art, visit any theme camps, go dancing one time, or set foot into the Cafe at all … we truly had the best Burning Man evar. You Gate folks are SICK.

summer (radio handle: summer)


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