Hello all you moop maniacs and line sweepers extraordinaire, and welcome to the very last installment of Moop Map 2015! That’s right, I’ve got the complete (though not FINAL-final) results for the entire city grid of Burning Man 2015, all mapped for you.
I’ve also got one more person to introduce you to – though there are countless amazing, fascinating people out here working Playa Restoration, I can’t introduce you to each of them. Luckily, miss Auntie Social speaks for many of us.
Auntie Social was the Man Base Stage Manager this year, and has been a member of the DPW since 2009. She does many amazing things in the outside world as well, so I’ll be sharing some of her photos of a truly creative, original life. Get inspired!
I used to go to Death Guild in San Francisco, and a bunch of the club would disappear at a certain time of the year and go to this thing called Burning Man.I finally started getting interested and asking questions in 2000, and didn’t make it out to the desert in 2003. Because it was a few years until I made it out here, there was lots of time to look at pictures. So it all felt very familiar when I got here.
I was sober my first year, so it wasn’t about the big party or anything like that. I just wanted to come and see these big art projects I’d seen my friends building.
It was a great year. I camped with Thunderdome and it was a lot of fun running the dome and getting to know the DPW. Then there was Camp Carp and Space Cowboys – the Death Carp Cowboys – I was like, ‘I love it here! This is great.’
I didn’t join DPW until 2009. It was incredibly overwhelming at first. I thought I knew a bunch of people, but it was nothing like what I expected – it was so much more.
My first year of DPW, I was working as Assistant Manager for the Commissary, so I got to meet everybody and make a lot of friends really quickly. It made me feel even more comfortable and like I belonged than at Thunderdome. Burning Man is one thing, but this is completely different. So much more tight knit and so much more…just amazing.
I don’t think there are many work sites where you get the opportunity to build such relationships with people. When you’re working together all day, and partying with each other at night, and eating all your meals together, and living in close confines – sometimes it drives you nuts, but it’s also one of the things you miss most when you’re not here.
Just being able to go next door and see somebody that you adore completely and be like, ‘Yo, let’s hang out,’ or ‘I need a shoulder to cry on.’
I definitely consider many people out here as family. I keep in contact with them throughout the year and greatly look forward to seeing them.
I was at the Man Base more hours this year than I was there cumulatively in all of my years.
I got to meet a lot of really cool people, and the Man Base this year was amazing. It was so cool to watch people just hang out and do their thing and go to Burning Man. I got to observe and spy a little bit.
But it also made me realize how much I enjoy pre and post event. There were so many people who would just run up to something and post for a picture in front of it, without even looking at it. Whereas there are times when we all just line up and look at the sunset. Sure, you might snap a quick photo, but then you put the camera away. I love the moments when we’re all just hanging out, and taking it in, and being a part of this beautiful place.
I find that if you’re in a large gathering with people you have a connection with, it doesn’t matter where on this planet you are.That said, we’re in Gerlach, Nevada, which is one of my favorite places on the planet. There’s something amazing about the prehistoric beauty out here.
So I don’t know if it’s really the community aspect, in this place, or whether you can feel it someplace else. I’ve been doing this since I was 23, and I’m 34 now. How much of it is this place teaching me how to move that feeling to the rest of my life? Or how much of it is really that you can hang out anywhere with the right people and have a grand old time? I don’t know.
For the past couple of years, I continue to think it’s going to be my last year. And then I come out here, and by the end of the season I can’t imagine it not being a part of my world to some extent.
Auntie, you’re one of the steady stars of our community. I can’t imagine this place without you, either.
To all my DPW and Restoration and Burning Man brethren – whatever it is, we found it. And once you find it, you have it forever.
A Map For You
In the greatness of the universe, our city is but a speck. And in the expanse of the site that was once Black Rock City, nary a speck remains.
Playa Restoration’s line sweepers had quite the adventure in bringing you this final map. They forded rivers, sloshed through the mud, and even changed their plans to stay an extra couple of days so they could complete the epic task of mooping the city of Black Rock.
Resto, we salute you! Black Rock City, we salute you too! Here’s a hurrah for the one-two punch: a city full of people who really did their best to Leave No Trace, and a dedicated crew who did whatever it took to restore the playa.
This is what it takes to pass the inspection and ensure that Burning Man keeps happening. And so it shall. Onward to 2016.
One last word: This is NOT the final map. The final is still being created, and will be released in a few months, along with detailed information about what was found where. If you’re wondering about what happened, and you’re a placed camp, you will hear from your Placement representative in a few months with more information. For now, celebrate the close of a truly successful season, despite the odds and the weather, and give your Burning Man representatives a few weeks to breathe. We love ya!