Burning Man, the annual event where tens of thousands of people camp out in the Nevada desert to take drugs, make art, take drugs, connect with each other, and take drugs has been canceled. At least, the physical event has been canceled, because hold on to your ayahuasca-vomit-bags -- Burning Man is going digital. Here's the official statement:
"After much listening, discussion, and careful consideration, we have made the difficult decision not to build Black Rock City in 2020. Given the painful reality of COVID-19, one of the greatest global challenges of our lifetimes, we believe this is the right thing to do. Yes, we are heartbroken. We know you are too. In 2020 we need human connection and Immediacy more than ever. But public health and the well-being of our participants, staff, and neighbors in Nevada are our highest priorities.
We are, however, going to build Black Rock City in The Multiverse. That's the theme for 2020 so we're going to lean into it. Who'd have believed it would come true? We look forward to welcoming you to Virtual Black Rock City 2020. We're not sure how it's going to come out; it will likely be messy and awkward with mistakes. It will also likely be engaging, connective, and fun."
We imagine a great many people now are concocting ways to liberate their minds in the center of their living rooms and strategizing where best to push the credenza in order to make room for a drunken orgy of one. You may be tempted to point and laugh at such endeavors, and we encourage you to do so, as the thought of 50,000 people gathering online to watch someone build an effigy, that ends up getting set ablaze, sounds less like a festival of free thought and more like a failed University of Pheonix carpentry class.
But, in the spirit of Burning Man, we're willing to keep an open mind. Hosting a virtual event allows folks of all kinds to attend Burning Man, not just anyone with enough cash and free time to fly out to Nevada for a week. And sure, this online forum will probably just turn into a rehash of Chatroulette, as naked body after naked body dashes across your screen, but at least there'll be cool glow-in-the-dark paint designs on the genitals this time.
Top Image: GemGemRemy/Pixabay