The Blissful Idiot goes to Burning Man: Volume III/Episode 4 – Return to the Temple (Side A)


Catch up: Episode 1 / Episode 2 / Episode 3

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I try to avoid the Temple completely. I also try to avoid quiet reflection. I don’t really like to find my true self. Because I did a couple of times and it scared the shit out of me.

Gonzo from NYC

Dear Diary + Mr. Fluffy pen,

Once I’d gotten my one-on-one with David Best, I soon came to the not so astonishing revelation of “well now freaking what?” Considering I knew absolutely diddly-poo about this wacky Temple business, other than the thing making my poor asshole pucker up 32.5 times over, it made just a tad bit o’ sense to become better acquainted with the black hole. And what better way to embark on a “Temple research project bonanza-thon” than by taking a nap first – AS FAR AWAY FROM THE TEMPLE AS POSSIBLE! Ok, ok, ok, so the very notion of stepping foot inside its clutches still gave me a heaping case of the heebie-jeebie jimmies. Baby carrots, Mr. Fluffy, baby carrots. Ok, baby steps too. But I’m gonna eat baby carrots while taking baby steps. I mean, look, let me just do my thing here already. Geeeeeez.

On that note, after my nappy-poo, I cautiously emerged ready to take on the afternoon. About 20 feet away from my campsite, a holly jolly neighbor of mine, who goes by the name “Crow,” and who just so happened to be an artist himself, was fiddle-farting around in the bed of his pickup truck. “Hey neighbor! What the fuck are you doing back there-Did I scare you-Want some alcohol?!” I figured I’d get him nice and lubricated on a few Lime-rita’s to see what kind of filth he might have on a fellow art-eeeeeeeeeeest. Wizard status withstanding, surely these special Burner yo-yo’s run in the same Jumanji circles and go shopping together for all the artsy-fartsy crap. Fuck, I dunno. All I know is he kept blabbing about absolutely haaaaaaaaving to get out to this “installation” thingy whatever he’d been assembling on the stupid playa. I’m like, “Oh my God! Fine. Go play with your wacky art. See what I care!” (no baby carrots for him!)

It was on our meandering trip out to this curious contraption he called “Essential de la Playa” (think it’s Icelandic) that I was able to pick his goofy brain a bit.

“What’s with this David Best anyways? Is he a wizard? Is he, is he? It’s okay. I won’t tell anyyyyyyyyoooooonnnneeeeee.

Crow: “Haha, I don’t know about a ‘wizard.’”

“Then why does it look like a goddamn wizard designed the Temple? Huh? Tell me already.”

Crow: “Well, in my opinion, the thing that David does best is that he always uses classic lines. Classic vernacular. He chooses very sacred shapes and symbols. He’s always using these spires to pull things from top to bottom and then having something halfway up meeting them. He follows very primitive lines and uses very classical structures that already have hundreds of years of human connection…David is just the best Temple builder that we have.” Oh my goodness, the filth. Such filthy spiraling human frolic mayhem. So freaking scandalous indeed!


However, before he could continue going off like a human textbook about the Temple, we just haaaaaaaaad to snap a selfie next to his fancypants installation. Getting caught up in the moment, I decided to ask him to be my bi-racial, non-sexual Temple date for the day. Oh I couldn’t wait. It was gonna be awwwwwweeeeesooooooome! But what seemed like a pretty easy proposition immediately turned into a whopping game of ‘fraidy cat sissy pants tug of war. The interaction went something like so:

“C’mon, we’ll go together. It’ll be a blast.”

Crow: “No. Nu Uh. No way, not today.”

“It’s gonna be ok, we’ll hold hands. You and me. Let’s do it!”

Crow: “I already said NO.”

“Damnit! Hold my fucking hand already, you pussy! Temple besties forever and ever – YOU AND ME.”

Crow: “Listen, I can’t do it. There’s a lot of energy in there. You take on ‘other’ energy sometimes being inside, which is why I wait…until the very last night.”

“Fine. Guess what? You’re not being a very helpful Burner person right now. Like whatevs. Pfffffffffffffffft…”



Geez Louise Mr. Fluffy, I found nothing to be folly jolly about that exchange whatsoever. That’s the last time I ever ask anyone to go on a bi-racial, non-sexual Temple date with me! Not gonna lie, as we parted ways I was feeling pretty vulnerable. Pretty delicate. Pretty awkward! It didn’t matter though. I put on my big boy face, mounted my ultra shitty rental “bike” and trudged along into yet another goddamn sand typhoon. God, I hate those things. Soooooooo inconvenient! Pffffffffffft!

After eventualllllllllllllly finding my way to the 9 o’clock crossing, I stopped to collect myself. Indeed Mr. Fluffy, I’d officially reached a “sink or swim” moment in my Burning Man vacation getaway spree. I was either gonna continue on this insane Temple expedition and confront my fear of it – solo – or turn around like a lil ole Nancy, get shit-canned sideways, only to end up face first somewhere on top of filthy-ass Distrikt. As tempting and entirely questionable AF Plan B sounded at the time, I refused to give in. I wouldn’t do it! Ok, on second thought…No, JUST NO!

cremerica_bm16_temple_hazePeddling faster and faster through the dusty haze, I aimed toward whatever glimpse of the Temple space needle I could see. That’s right Mr. Fluffy – I WENT FOR IT. “Here we go, no turnin’ back!” The closer I approached, the more I could feel its spooky tractor beam pull oozing around me. Oh Jesus, it was just been too goddamn much though. As desperately as I wanted to follow in the wake of some art car debacle playing nothing but horrible mariachi music just so I could find out why anyone would blare nothing but god awful mariachi music in the middle of a fucking desert, alas, its allure was no match for what beckoned beyond. Indeed, it was no match for the last vestige of “order” before hitting balls deep playa action. No match for the landmark where the largest freak show clock on the effing planet struck midnight. No match for the cosmic nexus located at the intersection of “Fuck your Burn” and “Fuck your Burn.” Fuck my burn?! FUCK YOUR BURN! Ok, ok, you get the point already. The Temple wanted my soul and I’d have to do my very bestest not to let the thing have its way with me. It’s like, “Ok Mr. Temple, take it easy on the heavy petting until we go out for ice cream sandwiches. Mmmmmmkay?”

After arriving upon the bicycle littered outskirts of the Temple “parking lot,” I immediately sensed the sphere of suspended reality radiating from the perimeter. “Ohhhhh geez – this again – here we fucking go.” But get this – before I could even begin climbing into my big boy space pants, it was too late. Every nano-particle of my sweet, innocent body instantaneously numbed over with goosebumps galore to the point of not even being able to feel my asshole pucker up. No more canary in a coalmine for this peckerwood! Just as the tutu man from a few days ago had stood transfixed upon the beast in the most unflinchingly epic staring contest in the history of mankind, I too could now feel its hypnotic presence sucking the entirety of my focus into a far-reaching parallel Temple quadrant somewhere in the multi-verse. Trying saying that 200 times in row!

Listen Mr. Fluffy, your little eyes would’ve never been able to comprehend what I saw. I know it might sound kinda bonkers, but I swear there were these lil fun-time elves atop the inside of that pagoda pleasure dome. And, and, and they were playing leapfrog in nothing but their jammies. Such filth. And then…and then…this one elf kept slappin’ the others in the face with a bag of wet salami. Oh geeeeez you guys, now that’s just silly!

Right as I was about to lose all forms of connection with the outside world, I heard a shimmering sound. It was…………..a voice………a female voice……….….and………….it twas echoing towards me…

Voice: “Hey, isn’t it funny when someone says ‘We’re takin’ the boat out?’ “

“Boooooat? Whaaaaaaaaa?”

Even if faint at first, her words had somehow penetrated into the soupy fog of nonsense enveloping my being. And I’ll be damned if those two entities weren’t merging into one giant goddamn supercloud of indescribable nonsense.

Voice: “I heard this dude earlier talking about his art car. ‘Gonna take the boat out for a ride if you wanna join!’”

“Haha yeah, oooooooooo-kaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay…”

Whether she was clued in on my vastly removed state of mind or was simply going all Chatty Cathy to the fucking max on my helpless ass was uncertain. Nonetheless, I could sense her moving closer and closer, getting ever more through and through to my core.

Voice: “But really, it’s pretty funny when you stop and think about it, right? Considering we’re out in a desert, riiiiiight? There’s not a single body of water out here, ya knoooow?”

“Funny. Right. Ice cream sandwiches. Good stuff. Yeaaaaaaaaaah…”

Then…without hesitation, she grabbed me by the arms and looked directly into my dazed eyes.

“Like I’M ON A BOATBITCH!!!!!!!”

And with those 6 words – I had awoken. Before you could say “Temple elf leapfrog slip’n’slide rager for the ages,” my hypnosis immediately shattered, shifting me from floating entrancement to a walloping case of the giggle fit Sundaes. Oh my goodness Mr. Fluffy, you should’ve been there!

“Ohhhhhhh Jesus, a boat ride in the desert?! Now that’s just bonker sauce city. What the golly… You should just…you should go on tour with that! No seriously, get the fuck outta here! It’s just too much, I tell ya! Wooooooooooooooo! Ohhhh shit, where the hell am I?”

Whether her bold proclamation was a bonafide solid gold side-splitter or a total reach job in the topical humor department was well beside the point. Her random whimsy straight out of Goofyville, USA was exactly what I needed. She’d managed to ground my silly ass right as I was about to float away into the abyss. This kooky gal had thrown me a Burner lifeline, alright. Oh golly Mr. Fluffy, talk about one hot doozey of playa magic!

Once I’d shaken off the petrification jisms and regained my composure, we had a chance to get beyond the boat banter. Apparently this gal went by “Electra” (no relation to Carmen) and came from a strange land called “Lost Anglelust.” Really beginning to talk amongst ourselves, we eventually weaved the conversation around to what had brought us to this mad conundrum in the first place. Next thing you knew, we were Temple bosom buddies. It was right then when she came much closer. Oooooooo, so you wanna get all touchy-feely with me, do ya? Perhaps not to offend the Temple, she confided to me in a near whisper.


“Even though I’ve been told by several people, who are really close to me that I have really sensitive energy, honestly I had never seen it. I never believed it…until I came to this place.”

“Uh yeah, like – meeeeeee tooooooooooooooo

“And whatever intention any person brings here…maybe they just want to come and check out the art. That’s exactly what I did. I was like, ‘I know this shit’s gonna be bad ass!’ “

“Off the fucking hook. Fuck your hook.”

“But it brought a lot of really raw stuff out of me…”

“Goodness gracious!”

“It was something I had been holding onto and didn’t even realize…And I was like, ‘I NEED TO RELEASE THIS’ and, and then… “

“Go on, GO ON.”

“Then I was like, ‘Holy shit – THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING.’”

Indeed, it really was happening. After absorbing everything she’d just thrown at me as if I was her special confidante, it was a rather perplexing moment, Mr. Fluffy pen. Although her words initially gave me a case of the cold shivers on a pastrami weirdo sandwich, I quickly realized that my once shaken to the core nerves had subsided substantially. No longer feeling like I was tumbling along this bizarre Temple roller coaster jamboree alone anymore – it gave me a lasting jolt. Maybe it was courage, maybe it was gumption, maybe I just needed to poop. Fuck, I dunno. Whatever it might’ve been, I was finally ready to plunge my way through one of those fancy entrances and take on the wooden creature…