Packing to move

When you are moving you become uncommonly aware of all the crap you have accumulated in your life to this point. In this case, there are two of us and we are mostly handling our own things. So, I am being forced to realize how much crap I actually have to deal with. How much STUFF I have been toting around and never looked at since it landed in that box ten, even fifteen, years ago. 

When I left Las Vegas in 2011, I filled a dumpster with stuff that I discarded and regretted leaving behind. It was really hard to have walked away from some of that stuff. But, stuff is just stuff. My ex and I managed to collect so much. I managed to just keep so much stuff, I promised to clean house when I start unpacking. 

Stay tuned for details. Not that anyone is reading this silly blog. But I guess it gives me a place to ramble on. 


Started working on the Music Section today and made a decent first dent. It’s coming to light I am taking too much on again and the music page is going to evolve over time. Of course there will be lots of links in there, but time will tell.

I went out on Saturday night and over-did it. Then I had to go to work for an OT day on Sunday and and suffered… like suffered. Still not 1–%, but that could be other things too. Ugh, dieting. Ugh, the fucking holidays. Ugh, working on the non-profit. Ugh, lots of Ughs.

Anyway, this is just a short groan session. Toodles.

This thing… it’s awful (trigger warning)

the man in the mirrorLet me start off with a trigger warning on this one, because I am talking about suicide and death. This subject has been on my mind and if you have not been able to tell from my recent posts about Burning Man this year, then you have not really been paying attention. 

Last week I found out someone I knew was killed when he was hit by a car. I hear he was killed instantly and did not suffer. The loss of someone who shined that bright in the world really bummed me out. We were not friends in my definition of friends, but we were comfortable with each other to be very friendly. He was, in my opinion, a bright light in the world. 

Flashback to the beginning of the year when another soul I saw a a tremendous and brilliant light in my universe was taken away because of a heart attack brought on by drug use. His college age daughter came into my work a couple weeks ago and gave me an amazing hug. When the person in the previous paragraph news hit me I think I was transported back when I found out when person B was lost. 

Add that there are a lot of people around me suffering because of recent suicides that were planned out. I feel the heart-ache from these friends and see the pain of losing those people. 

Add to that these cheesy messages crudely attempting to reach out to people who are thinking about suicide:

If you or someone you know has talked about contemplating suicide,
call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at:

Maybe these appeal to people who are triggered and not sure of they want to end it all. Recently, people in my universe seem to be planning it out and that is not the customer who is calling these numbers above. 

I would never call one of those numbers. I think calling Walmart Customer Service would be more enticing. That!.. would surely kill me. 

I can tell you how close I was to being one of them. But the thing that keeps me from doing it is the faces of the loved ones who around me. To think about hurting any of them is more than I could endure in life or death. I firmly believe in leaving this world better than when you arrive and I strive to do that everyday. I fail at it tremendously sometimes. But… I get back up and push on. 

I wanted to get this off my chest. I firmly believe no one will read this. Nor is anyone really paying attention to my blog. All these years of waaaah and whine hardly appeal to people today. And it should be noted while I blog more when in a funk I am often in a lovely place! Thank you for… well nothing. No one reads me. 

Hey Blog

I promised myself I would write here more. The trick is not to let this become a place of non-stop complaining. There was a long period where I think that, that was all that was coming out of me. So, I think I am going to riff a little while and see where this goes.

  • The editor I hired to look over my book that I spent a few years working on has completely dropped the ball and admitted he was never going to get it done. There was the suggestion of a refund, but I am not convinced. The book does need more work, but I am finishing up a sequel to it now. Which is really helpful because I can further assess out some of the longer term plot points and characters I was using. Book 1 is about 400 pages, Book 2 is starting to get close to 600.
  • The universe is yelling at me to make some changes, and I keep holding back. It will kick my ass if I do not heed the clear messages I am getting. I have never been afraid to make leaps of faith. The truth is it has generally worked in my favor to jump. The biggest things holding me back are my age and the fact I do not want to stress out my CMonster.
  • I have been trying to lose weight. I have been dieting and watching what I eat. I have been drinking a lot more water, less coffee, reduced sugar. In the scope of things, animal proteins down 90% and eliminating wheat as much as possible.
    • eliminating wheat has reduced inflammation in my joints and reduced my pain significantly
    • same with meat, taking out all poultry, almost all pork, almost all beef made me feel much better….
    • but, in the last couple weeks  I noticed sugar and meat were sneaking back in and it is time to slap that down again
  • Our apartment is lovely. We are so blessed. We are talking about moving far way. It is looking pretty serious now. Might be time to leave the bay area.
  • I did a thing last month! I hosted a web broadcast and it was pretty cool the way it turned out. I am the founder and chair of Queerburners, a non-profit for LGBTQAI Burning Man participants. It went really well and I have three more planned and possibly two more as well. Check our for more details.
  • I have been blessed with some social things this week and feeling a bit more connected to the world. It has been a long time and I was really feeling very alone once again. Like, no one wanted to hang out. It’s been weird, but I think a lot of people felt that way.
    • Last Thursday hanging out at Ocean Beach for a Sunset burn and celebrating an early birthday with Bern
    • Breakfast with my friend and fellow weirdo Craig at Orphan Andy’s in Castro
    • Last night in the Laurel with Scoot and Propeller sitting around a lovely fire
  • Eager to hang out socially at Power House or the SF Eagle. But, seriously hung up on my weight and health right now. I am genuinely worried that if I do not get a hold on it that I am as good as dead.
    • You know when people are close to you pass on, I have a theory that it is death getting closer and closer until death finds you or someone else close by to take. So close sometimes. I have got to get my health back.

Rants completed.

Our relationship is complicated

It has been a while since I cared for this blog. This one or the layer above it which is just personal stuff. I have slowly started trying to test the layers and start looking at it again. There was a cathartic release in the past, especially for someone like me who feels more and more focused on what is good for me and what is not.

Me at the last Burning Man Global Leadership Summit in 2016.

Clearly to me, starting in 2019, I started seeing my relationship with Burning Man as complicated and unhealthy. I was ready to walk away cold 100% and not look back. But I was invited to participate in something profound for the future of the community and jumped back in.

I have actively been someone who stood in front of the room, or spoke up, or volunteered, or created for the community over the years. Leadership was a natural part of who I was my whole life, but never have I been in a place with so many people willing to strip a person down who dared to do.

Burning Man Global Leadership Summit 2015

And the willingness of people to take my successes and try and make it their own has astonished me. People I trusted and felt I could count on just gutted me with their own ambitions they could never have carried out on their own.

And finally the lack of guts in Burning Man organizational leadership. Survival of the org was all important, but evolution was so hard. Any change in the culture was at the end of a sharp stick.

Then when I was asked to be part of Burning Man Culture Direction Setting as a project, coming in at Phase 2, I thought I was going to get a chance for magic. The leaders in the community wanted the same thing, BMorg was listening!

Me leading a Burning Man gathering called Theme Camp Speed Dating

We finished Phase 2 in April this year and when we did I saw some great changes on paper, but I left feeling like this cooling off period to the fall and seeing these changes implemented is still in the air.

The voices of people from the Org were still the same on some levels and I finished the last meeting by leaving a little early and feeling defeated.

There are people, including the CEO, whom I have had a lot of belief in. There were some members of the founders whom I knew were never going to evolve. It was part of being gay at Burning Man and being seen the way we were that made me sad.

There is a part of Burning Man in Black Rock City like in a lot of cities where LGBTQ people accumulated. In this case it used to be called the Gayborhood. We really had to fight to get some recognition that the Gayborhood was more than a collection point, it was a zone of safety for the vulnerable.

I tried to start a new relationship with Burning Man with this program and I am feeling like it may have been a mistake. While some important changes will be coming, if implemented, it is merely a scratch on the surface. In the end there was little culture rescued. There was no real change.

Burning Man was not cancelled for 2020, but Black Rock City IRL was. The culture is fairly sound. It involves putting a lot of heads in the sand. It involves a lot of self-negotiation. Figure out what you can live with and what you can’t. And there I am.

Burning Man Out

I have seen it in other people and I see people bounce back from it with a variety of results. I think I am feeling really done in by this thing and I am struggling to get a grip on it. I struggled to be part of the Burning Man community as a leader/do’er/or anything meaningful because I really immersed myself.

When I joined the Burning Man community in 2008 I come in through the Las Vegas Burner community and became integrated and began participating from day #1. Captain Bill put me in charge of some drunk idiot and I made sure he stayed out of trouble for the night.

His wife (Captain Bill’s) Amber gave me my playa name; Toaster. I think it happened a short while after my arrival as part of their decompression (or something like that) which was a launching platform into a new life for me.

I found spirit and rejuvenation for the first couple years, but as politics and hypocrisy began rooting deep into what I thought were good things all I could see was a cancer growing out of control.

One of the owners of burning man once told me I was a “burr under her saddle” and she padded it to imply there was a good and bad side to that. I called out shitty behavior that I saw happening and in the end it just buried me.

I left Vegas partially because of the drama and craziness of people who were supposed to be leaders in this community.

It’s so much about the drugs and sex and it is not the hippie love fest people think it is. There is homophobia, sexual assault, and practically condoned alcohol and drug abuse rampant out there; at the BRC or in the community. I am not innocent about these things, but I think I have gone as far as I can.

I have huge projects that need to be given to someone who cares, but the level of ambivalence and narcissism with leaders and community members is deafening. They say it is like herding cats. I say it is playing dodge-ball with 50,000 Hellen Kellers.

So, I am seriously considering bowing out entirely and with that clsing this chapter of my life. Not sure it is for me anymore.

Months Later: What?

Been weeks since I let go of some things and as much as I tried to keep a positive attitude over Burning Man’s ticket fuck up I am finding I just can’t. The Lottery was a big FUCK YOU  to the general Burner population and a lot of people are saying so.

On top of that – the divide between the have and have-not’s within the Burning Man world of today has never been so apparent. Coming to San Francisco was like taking a bath in this world has finally given me a perspective that it’s time to let go.

It’s time to let go of trying to be a part of the machine and the hope of being welcomed in a culture that is a hop, skip and a jump from what real people do. When I see Larry celebrating the purchase of his 100,000 dollar car and this culture of delusion and hypocrisy it just stabs at my heart.

I believe in the nice idea of Burning Man but they have finally just lost it. I bet old hippies said that 5 years ago. And another group of hippies 5 years before that… and now they are growing to 70,000 tickets next year and it’s just a dead ship drifting in the ocean (makes sense in my head).

Angry, no. This is the new lallapalooza … Coachella 2.0 … can;t say I would be surprised to see a banner for Burning Man brand coffee in center camp soon.