Burning Man ’07: The Story of Ladies’ Night, and the most perfect Mad Max car

In this one time at burning man by summerburkesLeave a Comment

OMG dude freak OUT. Look at the car we get to drive.

Little Matty got kicked out of the event for some things he didn’t even do. Everyone’s really bummed about it, and he was being so good, too. Little Matty’s from Deathguild camp, and other than the Thunderdome itself, Matt’s car is the first and last thing we remember about Burning Man.

It’s a Mad Max fantasy come true, and it’s the most beautiful car ever made. Indeed, to this writer, it sort of embodies what we love about the whole dirt rave.

And Doyle is in charge of the car since Matt got kicked out, and C-Load after him. Neither of them want to be seen in that car, as it’s garnered quite a reputation for mayhem with the Rangers. Both of those boys have art cars already, too, so Doyle thought Matty would enjoy the fact that during the event a bunch of hot Gate chicks would be piled on his car.

So Doyle put us third in charge. Which means not only do we get a vehicle for the time being — we get THE vehicle. We are, for now, the guardian of the most bad-ass vehicle of all time.

Best day ever. Matty, if you’re reading this, we’ll take care of your baby like we gave birth to it.



A number of years ago during Burning Man setup, some of the ladies of the DPW, including this writer, were stuck on the ranch in the middle of a big fat sausage party. Not only were we surrounded by boys — they were burly, power-tool-wielding, heavy-equipment-driving, Carhartts-and-boots-wearing boys. No metrosexuals at all.

Suffocating a bit from all the testosterone (not in a sexist way, but just saying) we gals decided we wanted to have a “Ladies’ Night,” to trade skin products and lipsticks and groom each other and gossip and honky-tonk in a girly-girl estero-fest. No boys were allowed, and all the girls were told to gather in the commissary after dinner.

Coyote and Will Roger showed up in dresses. So we had to let them in and put makeup all over them. Other macho boys watching from the periphery (and not being allowed in, seeing as how they didn’t have the proper attire or body parts) marveled at how easy it could be to get chicks’ attention just by lowering your guard enough to put on a dress.

The following year, all hell broke loose. “Ladies’ Night” became the otherworldy, chaotic, gender-bending Thursday-prior-to-the-event ritual we all celebrate before the tourists get here — to get our ya-yas out in the privacy of our own desert home and watch the men wear dresses. And boy, do they wear dresses. They go all out.

Years went by, and Ladies’ Night morphed and grew. There was MCing; there were trophies; there was a massive Walk-Off. Someone built a runway and a stage and a red carpet at the entrance and a stripper pole. There were DJs (NO RAVE MUSIC GODDAMMIT) and there was extreme drunkenness.

There was even an epic party-crashing episode on the part of the Gate staff — who dressed as clowns and rammed a clown car into the side of the commissary and Rabbi put some chocolate cake batter in a Ziploc and pretended to take a Cleveland Steamer on Spider’s chest.

And then the creepy sex people started to take over.

Spanking booths? F*ck off. This is not the event yet; take your glowsticks elsewhere. Ladies’ Night became too big, voyeuristic, too furry-legwarmer-and-blinky-light crowded for our taste (and a lot of others). So we threw a bomb: we called VIKING NIGHT for this Thursday night.

We don’t even know what that means yet, aside from gathering to wear fur and leather and listen to heavy metal (particularly The Sword’s Age of Winters) and go RAAAAAAR. But the Viking-Night-calling served its purpose: Ladies’ Night was moved to another secret night and location.

Some people in Black Rock City have even taken to arranging their schedules to get on the early arrivals list in order to be here for Ladies’ Night — but sorry, it already happened. And if you come to the Gate and ask where Ladies’ Night is on Thursday, we’re going to tell you it’s in First Camp.

And then, there will be marauding and berserking.


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