This week would have been Burning Man. But with the annual festival canceled this year, many Burners are putting on their own mini-Burns. Me and my friends are planning one in Joshua Tree. But along the way, I have learned what NOT to do when throwing your own mini-Burning Man.
1) Don’t over-schedule: The main organizer of our group has proven that OCD and cocaine don’t mix. This guy put together an hourly schedule on an excel sheet, assigned everyone numerous, needless tasks, and signed them up for makeshift workshops they have no interest in, accounting for every part of each day. It made a free spirit like me feel claustrophobic and pressured. This led to a tense phone call that included some yelling, name-calling, and a resolution that was more passive-aggressive than helpful. It has made the whole trip feel weird. Just let it flow, bro…trust me.
2) Be COVID-safe: That means keep it small, stage it outdoors, and no friends of friends, even if they’re attractive. Temperature reader? Bring it. Got a cough or fever. Stay home. And don’t breathe on people. You can party hardy, and still remain a few feet apart. Like Sting sang – don’t stand, don’t stand, don’t stand so close to me.
3) Decide on the playlists beforehand: If you wait until the actual party to sift through your Spotify and Soundcloud lists, it might get contentious. You will assuredly have music snobs who want the most obscure s*** that few people can dance to, versus EDM newbies who keep pining for commercial crap that just pisses you off because it sounds like something you’d hear on a cruise ship ad. Find a good mix or two (I suggest Mayan Warrior mixes to keep it in theme) and make sure you get it all queued up, so the party can groove.
4) Don’t Invite Your Ex: I get that you still want to be friends. I get that they hang out with some of your clique, and you kind of like it because it shows how secure you are with it all. But She or He is only going to make things awkward. They will rehash all your old issues, especially after their fifth White Claw, and prevent you from hooking up with your new interest, whose friend you invited hoping it’d make it easier for them to come. You can’t have it all. You’re not going to launch a whole new relationship era in your life while still trying to resolve unfinished business with your last one. Move on.
5) Stay Off Hard Drugs: Just say no to coke, K, and the Mals, and keep it psychedelic – even legal, with cannabis products. Have wine, have cheese, be high on life. You’re gonna have to get back to your real life and all its problems come Tuesday morning. You want to be prepared – not spent, strung out, and hung over.
…And remember, have fun! Because who knows when we’ll ever go to a real Burning Man again.