Thursday, February 02, 2012

Going Home to Black Rock City!

Just found out we were lucky enough to survive a confusing lottery tier system to purchase tickets to Burning Man 2012! This year's theme is Fertility 2.0 and I'm gagging for a re-boot. With confetti.

The poster rather resembles the clusterfuck of their lottery ticket system - or a metastasizing cell, or maybe Charlotte's Web when she released all her baby spiders in the air? In any case, it's a very cool take on the layout of Black Rock City - and its expansive growth.
From the website: Theme camps cling in fertile clusters to its latticework of streets, artworks tumble out of it, like pollen on the air. These nodes of interaction mutate, grow and reproduce their kind. Burning Man communities have now escaped this capsule world: our culture in a Petri dish has effloresced - it spreads across five continents. 

This fertility theme reminds me of the book I'm reading by Stephen Jay Gould, Full House, which postulates we human beings are not the apotheosis of evolution, as most would like to believe. So we have consciousness, but is the fact that our brains excrete thoughts any better than the camouflage excreted by an octopus; the speed exerted by a cheetah?

If we're the be all end all of evolution, how is it a microscopic bacteria can take us down? How the mighty fall! Yet you don't see bacteria or viruses celebrating their own fabulousness; creating gods that only allow them into their exclusive heavens. 

Gould suggests, as did Darwin (sometimes), that natural selection produces local adaptation - and not overall progress. We humans are but a flourishing bough on the arborescent tree of life. We all go forth together. And yet it's interesting to me how we think not only that we're the best - but we're the only! How has our consciousness helped; how has it hindered? I would wager that it's more a curse, and that humanity's greatest gift is not consciousness but rather our conscience, which ought be more evolved.

Planned Parenthood lost their funding from the Susan G Komen Foundation, which caved to radical right wing pressure to drop Planned Parenthood because they provide legal abortion as an options to women. Let's punish women at Planned Parenthood by politically denying them cancer screenings and mammograms!*

A succinct sum up:

It's not entirely surprising they have politicized health care yet again. Certainly they sure as hell politicized AIDS (lack of) funding, so cancer's rather late in the game no? Or is it just another case of the gays being way ahead of the trend?

In any case, it makes  me wonder what kind of bough our species really is on that arborescent tree of life? And when I re-read that amazing short story, 'Big Blonde', by Dorothy Parker - about a bubbly woman's slow descent into boozy despair, and the words Parker uses resonated: "She was beginning to feel toward alcohol a little puzzled distrust, as toward an old friend who has refused a simple favor...." I may feel this way toward the world in general. Like maybe it'll do me in. And/or that maybe that alcohol is the old friend I actually can trust?

Burning Man - get me hence, far from the maddening default world!

*Donate to Planned Parenthood here.


jade said...

i luv your guts

Jesse Archer said...

love to you Jade!