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THE ASSLESS CHAPEL NEWSLETTER #46: Civic Responsibility Edition (and Ticket Allocation)

The Chaplain’s Screed

I’m officially starting my yearly rotation of focusing on one of the Ten Principles with each and (nearly) every newsletter.  Larry Harvey claimed that the Ten Principles were always a part of Burner culture and he just wrote them down as a description of the Burning Man ethos.  I call bullshit on that for Civic Responsibility. 

The other nine Principles, ok… I buy that they were always there, but Civic Responsibility was added because it needed to be added.  It needed to be added because more and more people started coming.  And some of them weren’t great Burners.  And people started to get hurt, even killed.  And, of course, Burning Man became this big noticeable event on government land that was patrolled by law enforcement.  So, a healthy dash of Civic Responsibility became a prerequisite for keeping the Burn going, in addition to just being the right thing to do.

I can tell you that BORG and the Burner community take this seriously.  Camp leads are indoctrinated to educate regarding consent, ensure camps are safe and train their campers to keep themselves and others safe.  So, what does this mean for us?

Well, it means that every day, during MOOP sweep, we should also make sure that infrastructure is holding together.  It means we should have safety equipment, like fire extinguishers and a good first aid kit.  I bought a fire blanket to add in this year.  And it means we should all be prepared to keep things safe and educate ourselves (read the newsletters!)

It’s also why I put together the Red Folder, which is neither red, nor a folder, but is full of important information.  Of course, no one has read it and no one will read it.  So… I will be sending you Red Folder materials with every newsletter in video format you can watch and in audio format you can listen to while you drive.

Group News

[partial section redacted]

I spent a weekend checking out Burning Man art and other cool stuff in Reno.  Here are a couple pictures: 

These are pictures of the Space Whale.  It was pretty spectacular.

These lovebees were right next to a cute little wedding chapel!

If you have any news you’d like to share with the group, let me know!

Camp Planning

Wedding Planning

Our amazing team of graphic designers (Peter, Peaches and Ellie) put together some great wedding certificates.  I fucking love them!  I attached the files to this email.  As you can see, there are various versions of them.  I was going to ask everyone to tell me which they like, but I think I want to print out all of them and let the couples choose.

Most of you know this by now, but BORG would like us to put on a big, legally-binding marriage at Center Camp!  The current plan is to do this sometime on Wednesday.  I’m looking into arranging food, drinks and music and am also looking for a couple to marry.  If you’d like to help with this, feel free to let me know if you have an idea for a couple, food, music or drinks.

Other Camp Planning

I’d like to schedule 1-on-1 and small group meetings with everyone starting in May.  Below is my schedule.  If you can’t make the date, please send me some alternatives.  Look out for Google invites from my business email – all times are PST. 

·         April 30th ­8p:  Cassidy and her friend

·         First Week of May: Peaches, Peter, Curtis and Katie, in Salida!

·         May 9th 8p: Mojito Molly

·         May 22nd 8p:  Sia

·         May 28th 8p:  Fresh as Fuck and Rahul

·         May 29th 8p:  Ellie

·         June 4th ­­8p: Stupid Seamus and Red 

Black Rock City News and Acculturation

·         Burning Man Live had a great interview with Moshe Kasher, who started going to Burning Man on his own at the age of 16.  He’s a really interesting guy and the interview is well worth listening to.

·         Burner Express Air tickets are now available from SoCal, Nor Cal and Reno.  Not sure what they cost, but there are two major advantages.  First, no line to get in.  Second, you can show up on Saturday without a Work Access Pass (now called Setup Access Passes.)  Learn more here.

·         One of the greatest things Burning Man has done for the world is Burners Without Borders.  Here’s their latest newsletter if you want to learn about the great things they’re doing and how you can contribute.

·         Here’s an interesting post in the Burning Man Journal about how Burning Man helped push the word “gift” as a verb into common use in the English language; and how it’s now had its meaning diluted.

·         Submissions for the Remembrance Plaque are now open.

·         Cool video of the DMV.  Basically, Mutant Vehicle porn.

Placement / Ticket News

[section redacted]

Adding New Camp Members

If you have someone you’d like to add to our camp, let me know.  We currently have a ticket and vehicle pass available and can almost certainly get more.  Just think long and hard whether this person is a good fit for Burning Man and The Assless Chapel.  S/he must read and sign the agreements and get them to me.  I also need to do a Zoom with any additions to the camp, but am mostly relying on you to not bring someone who is going to be a good campmate.

Ticketing Calendar

Here is the ticketing calendar this year (these events usually occur at noon PST):

·         FOMO sale is open (don’t do it!)

·         February 20th: Steward Sale tickets allocated.

·         February 21st: Stewards Sale tickets allocated.

·         March 1st: Stewards Sale form opens.

·         March 8th: Steward Sale form closes.

·         March 13th: Stewards Sale opens.

·         March 15th: Stewards sale ends.

·         March 20th: Ticket Aid opens.

·         April 10th: Main Sale registration opens.

·         April 12th: Main Sale registration closes.

·         April 17th: Main Sale.

·         April 24th (est.): STEP opens.

·         June 5th: Ticket Aid closes.

·         June 29th: Last date to make changes to WAPs.

·         July 20th: WAPs allocated.

·         July 24th: OMG registration opens.

·         July 26th: OMG registration closes.

·         July 30th: OMG Sale.

·         August 10th (est.): WAPS sent to Assless Chaplain.

·         August 12th (est.): WAPS, tickets and vehicle pass distribution finalized within camp.

Current Pre-Build, Build Week, Burn Week and Exodus Schedule

Here is my preliminary schedule for pre-build, build week, burn week, Exodus and post-Exodus (keep in mind there will be many changes and additions):


Upcoming Tasks

To Do in the Next 10 Days


·         Send me any updates on your plans to join us.

·         If you haven’t yet, please look through the spreadsheet, so you know where to find essential information.

·         Let me know if you have any news you want to share.

·         Help figure out a couple to marry or arrange for music, booze or food.

·         Let me know if you CANNOT do the time I scheduled to meet with you.

·         Once STEP opens up, arrange to sell and buy tickets and vehicle passes.

·         Let me know if there’s someone you would like to add to our camp.

·         Download this mp3 to listen to the Red Folder section on Conflict Resolution or download here to watch it as a video.


·         Review red folder and begin Quixotic quest to share with everyone.

·         See if we can organically find a couple to marry.


·         Get me the signed agreements.

To Do in the Next 60 Days


·         Find our camp listing and share.

·         Find out our placement and share.

·         Print wedding certificates.

·         Print out wedding certificates.

TAC and Stupid Seamus

·         Stain, sand and spruce up The Dusty Altar Bar.  Add wheels?

·         Pull out and spruce up the altar and signage.

Closing Thoughts

The Communiversity was a free university in San Francisco during a brief period in the late 70s.  It was, it seems to me, an attempt by the last of the hippies, whose time was receding like a tide, to embrace Civic Responsibility.  Instead of just rejecting elements of society, it was an attempt to replace them. 

The Communiversity birthed the Suicide Club, which in turn birthed the Cacophony Society, which in turn helped create Burning Man.

Though the link to Burning Man seems indirect, Burning Man certainly still shows its roots in the Communiversity.  Of the many things Burning Man is, a communiversity is certainly one of them.  I’d say my Burning Man experience has taught me many things as well as any university class: basic construction, extreme camping, [redacted], survival skills and preparation, leadership, counseling, self-care and the list goes on and on. 

This learning process is crucial to Burners making Burning Man as great as it is.  After all, as Hunter S. Thompson – and many others – said:


"Anything Worth Doing is Worth Doing Right"


The Man Burns in 135 days! 

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