Post Nuclear Family – This is the reunion site for the Post Nuclear Family. Mutants are welcome.

Events

Feel free to join in or wander off, and ignore (or adopt (or mutate)) any of this advice.

PLAN

The Burn
It’s helpful to familiarize yourself with the 10 Principles. There won’t be a quiz, but these 10 principles will probably all be tested throughout the week (especially radical self-reliance). Burning Man is a harsh desert environment where there are no stores or vendors other than coffee, tea, and ice. Porta-Potties are placed in banks around the city. I try to leave them better than I found them. Speaking of “ew”, the black rock desert will coat everything you bring in a fine layer of beige alkaline dust, and the weather can range from amazingly amazing to dangerously dangerous. As unreal as Burning Man might seem, it is very real and hardship might become a part of your experience. The ticket warns the bearer of serious injury or death. All that said: Burning Man is fucking awesome. Here’s a timeline of its past history.

Roll Call
Are you planning on camping with us again this year? Let me know as soon as possible and I’ll add you to the roster before our camp fills up! We are trying to keep our numbers low, so talk to us before inviting anyone new. The answer is always “of course!” and new people are RAD but it if we don’t have the space or if it’s a large group then we can quickly become a collection of strangers.

Early Arrival Team
If you’d like to help set up camp or the Sensatron before the gates open on Saturday night at midnight then please let me know. There are only a few passes distributed to us every year, so try to hit me up soon.

PNF FB
The Post Nuclear Family Facebook page is set as a private group, let me know if you need an invite. Because we are managing our growth, please do not apply to join the group unless you are planning to camp with us or have camped with us in the past. It’s not just another FB forum for “ttitd“, it’s a place for our community to set up camp on the Internet to plan, regroup, visit, and share. Let me know if you have someone to add to the group so that I know which person to approve.

TICKETS

Before buying a ticket at the Burning Man (BMOrg) site you must create a “burner profile“.

The Main Ticket Sale is in early January and sells out immediately. There are additional rounds of ticket sales throughout the year, some at lower prices, even. The process can be tricky and stressful, but if you look you will probably find your ticket (and a car pass for each car that drives onto the playa). Usually, tickets “manifest” in amazing ways if you’re open to possibilities and communicate your needs (and sign up for the STEP program). If you are helping Post Nuclear Family set up or break down or are providing some awesome infrastructure please contact camp at post nuclear family with the dot and the com to be added to the “Directed Group Sale” ticket list (which ends even before the main sale). BMOrg sets aside some tickets every year for the artists and camps that make burning man rad. Here’s the Burning Man ticket page.

PREPARATION

Newbies
If this is your first burn then you might be overwhelmed by how much there is to fuck up. In reality, you will be fine. I know someone that showed up in shorts and a tee shirt and decided to give away his clothes as he entered the gate and walked through naked. By the end of the week he had a wardrobe of costumes, had eaten every day, and had enough water that he somehow didn’t die of dehydration. So, I would recommend not being too afraid of being unprepared, and enjoy the process of preparing yourself. As far as “comforts of home” this is arguably a good opportunity to rough it. i.e. Think of the burn as more of a journey than a vacation.

COPS

If a stranger is asking for drugs, no matter how “cool” they seem, it may be a police set-up. They could even be a busted burner who made a deal with the cops to bust someone else for a lesser penalty. Some come dressed as a group of burners: a cross dresser who’s twin sister has a lesbian girlfriend, and they dance with you and your friend for an hour, and then ask if you have anything. You share it without asking for money, and then you’re surrounded by cops. True story of our neighbor. $10k in legal fees, no record but fuuuuuuck. The point of that story is the story itself: they’re not busting people all the time, but they made grand theater out of it so just don’t be the star of that show. Do not allow police to search your tent because they will take that invitation to search our whole camp. Don’t let anyone see you do anything, and assume all strangers are potentially narcotics officers. If a stranger is looking to score, they are not be “radically self reliant”. The good news is that the arrests are statistically rare and they only happen when they see it. The police are not trying to arrest everyone, they’re trying to make examples. So keep it out of sight while you go out of your mind.

DO NOT get caught doing drugs on the Sensatron! It puts every passenger at risk for search.

Burning Man has a team of amazing volunteers called “Black Rock Rangers” that are there to assist us. They look like forest rangers, and they’re unusually friendly and helpful. They are not affiliated with the police, but you should still not do anything illegal around them.

Survival Checklist
Burning Man has an online survival checklist. I think it’s useful. Our camp will have fire extinguishers, a well stocked first aid kit, and an emergency poop bucket, a camp stove/kitchen, so no need to get those things.

You’ll want a little more than a gallon of fresh water per day, and lots of food that’s easy to heat up or add hot water. If you plan on taking showers then bring water for that. Please don’t got for luxuriously long showers, we have 60+ people in camp and it costs money to drain it.

It may be tempting to visit Wal-Mart along the way. They are a super convenient shopping megaplex that has 24 hour service in Reno with a burning man section in the back of their store. I’ve decided to stop supporting them (and stop hemorrhaging money) so it’s easy to pass on by, it just takes knowing that you’ve got everything.
Here’s what BMOrg has to say about surviving.

CAMP

Living Room

NEW SHADE! We have a peaked roof 20’x20’ shaded room for our living room this year. It will have a YELLOW roof and be fully, fully rad. After all the shade solutions we’ve had over the years we are now fully legit.
The living room is your place to unwind, relax, soak your feet, pass out, tell a story, etc. It will get messy as all BM living rooms do, but it’s a good policy to MOOP it when it’s getting sloppy.
New couch, new coffee table, new lights, new shade structure… So much muchness, it’s much too muchly much.

The Cooling Tower

We are going to stack our scaffolding up tall. Mount it at your own risk, and if you’ve been drinking you may want to be careful to bring a cocktail with you so that you don’t have to climb back down to get another. You may want to bring extras for those already up there.

Camp Shower

Zach and Rodin are bringing their camp shower. The shower is pure awesome.

There are instructions to follow at each step. If you’re unclear about anything, ask around until you find someone that knows. Bring your own water for showers, and don’t refill the tank when you’re done using it. Note: The shower drain is for soapy shower water only, no urine or kitchen water no matter how clean it seems. This area gets messy fast, so please be conscientous of so many Nukies sharing a single shower. Even if you brought a lot of water it’s a good idea to take quick showers to keep the tank from filling prematurely.

It bears repeating: Please don’t refill the shower reservoir when you’re done showering. The next person will fill it with their water and so on.

The main shower tank is getting drained on Friday morning, so that’s the last of the showers so that it can be packed up and ready to leave the playa.

The BMOrg policy is: “NO PUBLIC SHOWERS” unless groups have explicit permission, which involves inspectors and managed conditions. Your own guests can use the shower if you or they provide the water and you make sure to take responsibility for them, but we are not offering the shower as a public service. If you want to help someone with their show (radical inclusion, after all!) you’ll need to provide them with water or use theirs, and you will need to help them figure it out so they don’t leave the water drained and burn out the motor, or leave a mess in the drain screen, etc. etc.. Let’s not promote its usage because it will get expensive if it fills up early and it will suck if it breaks down, but it’s not exclusive.

Geodesia featuring “The Black Light Lounge”

Zach is bringing his 24′ diameter dome of evolving purpose. He will be setting up hammocks inside, and we’ll be rigging it with black lights and Julianne’s Wonder Horse for “Ultra Violet Portrait Night”. We may have massage happening in there, el pupo acoustico may make an appearance, and it’s basically a cool dark place to escape the sun.

 

Camp Beacon

We will have a ball with lights on it raised high so that you can see our camp from far, far away. Take a look back as you leave to orient yourself.

Open “Bar”

We don’t have a bar, but we certainly have alcohol around. Shut Up and Drink It will be served all week. It’s a perfect blend of shut up, and drink it. Feel free to announce cocktails and pass around beers or add alcohol bottles to the kitchen. Make sure not to give alcohol to underage visitors without checking for ID because it’s sometimes a sting operation. (The cop scene out there is not that bad, but when it’s bad it suddenly is.)

Kitchen

Our camp kitchen is for everyone to use. We have a propane stove, PNF cookware, and some spices. Please clean up the prep area and dishes when you are finished. Make sure to turn off both the stove and the propane tank when the cooking is done. Items labelled PNF are for general use.

We love sharing food, but please don’t leave extra food in the kitchen when you leave the playa. If you’re donating anything to camp, make sure that a campmate accepts responsibility for them. As awesome as donating food to the kitchen is, please don’t abandon your leftovers in the kitchen.

 

Pro(pane) tips:

  • Try to boil only as much water as you need to reduce the amount of gas needed to heat it
  • Check around if anyone else wants hot water, and add more as needed
  • Check around if anyone wants in on some of your food to share (there are lots of vegetarians, vegans, and gluten free people so it’s helpful to know your ingredients)
  • Bring a bowl and utensils when someone shares food with you, and if you’re feeling extra grateful you can add something to the meal and/or help clean the dishes. Please always clean up after yourself (dishes, garbage, leftovers)
  • Clean pots and pans on the quick side of slow. No rush, just let’s not get gross.

 

Water
Everyone needs to be responsible for your own water, but we’ll have an extra water in the kitchen for people to refill water bottles and to help with cleaning, etc. If you have an extra water jug it’s cool to replace empties as they happen.

Gray Water
After 16 years of varying success dealing with all the disgusting water that a camp generates, in 2015 we tried an experiment and it worked beautifully: take care of your own gray water. We have seen too many evap ponds fill up and not “evaporate”, and whenever there’s a single collection point it automatically gets sloshy and requires work to maintain it and a hazmat suit to deal with it. But a single person using water responsibly only generates about a single gallon jug of gross water over the course of a week. Use an opaque container with a wide mouth so it’s easy to pour into it and you don’t see the grossness floating inside it. Take it off the playa yourself. Gray water in the truck tends to spill or get punctured, but if you must put it on the truck, talk to me and we will arrange that.

You can keep your water usage to a minimum by eating everything off your plates and cooking pans, wipe it “clean” with a napkin, then spritz it with a misty water sprayer. If you do it with only a little water you can actually drink your remaining food before adding a little soap, and a final wipe, and you’re done. You can even throw away the paper towel. No sloshy water to deal with. If you’re cooking meat you may want to involve more water and soap, in which case you can use your large mouthed water bottle with a screw on cap to collect your gray water all week. This seems to work a lot better than all the other solutions I’ve seen over the years. Paper plates may seem wasteful, but they burn nicely and don’t generate any gray water.

Sharing Food
We don’t have camp meals, so we don’t have camp chores, or planned menus. This keeps us all free to share food with others on our own terms, clean up after ourselves, and eat what we want, every day, whenever. If you are making something and have extra, you can call out around and people can join in with their bowl and fork, or even adding something to the meal. Popular things to share are fresh and natural, or real; typically foods that come in their own packaging, like avocados, bananas, tomatoes, apples, watermelon, etc. Veggies, fruits, and meat rots pretty quick out in the desert so it’s better to use it earlier in the week and save your packaged and vacuum sealed foods for later. Many people in camp are some combination of gluten-free, sugar-free, unprocessed, vegetarian, non-dairy, kosher, etc., but don’t let that stop you from offering a shank of partially hydrogenated GMO panda meat.

Dasha turned us on to prepping our food at home and then vacuum sealing and freezing it so that it keeps your cooler cold and it’s easy to heat in boiling water without generating any gray water. Ask around in camp if you want to borrow a vacuum sealer before you go.

Zoological note: Things marked PNF are fair game, but I only ask that you not use pots and pans and knives marked “Siadek” on animals, and please don’t store meat in coolers marked “Siadek”. But the camp kitchen is available to all diets and lifestyles.

If you have any restrictions, or special foods that are not meant to be shared or something special to share with everyone, then please speak up!

Ice
Ice is available at Arctica stations (at center camp and the 9 and 3 spoke portals, 9am – 6pm daily, closing finally at noon on Labor Day). It’s cash only and costs $3 for cubes or a big block. Will is heroically making regular ice-runs on his art car, the di ser Piero, and the Sensatron often goes out for missions. If you’re part of a group mission, check around the camp to see who else needs ice, and help carry and distribute bags. Be prepared to get your own ice if you miss the camp call.   Un-attended ice will be distributed to whichever coolers will fit them. It’s a “snooze/lose” situation, so be proactive about your cooler levels. If people return with your ice, it’s a good time to get up and get it before it gets left out or claimed.

Drain your cooler water in large arcs away from foot paths so that you don’t create a muddy pool, and make sure to MOOP it before draining it for any material floating in it. Even little particles of food are considered MOOP.

Garbage
This is a “leave no trace” event and we should all be responsible for our own garbage. It starts at home with minimal packaging, but everything you bring that doesn’t slip out your butt or pee-pee hole should be in a stinky bag in your car when you leave. The truck will have a lot of camp garbage on it, but we can’t take everything. Basically put your own MOOP in your own garbage bags and save the camp MOOP for random bits of ew. Do not bring styrofoam or anything else that creates microscopic MOOP.

We’re going to have =4= separate trash bins for:

  • Burnables (cardboard, wood, paper)
  • Recyclable Cans (the recycling camp only takes crushed aluminum, not bottles or tin)
  • Recyclables (bottles (see “bottles” below), tin cans, aluminum, plastic)
  • Garbage (ew)

When using these communal bins to sort everything out correctly, crush your cans, remove plastic from burnables, etc. If our communal trash area is neat it will be neat-o. If a can is full, please remove that bag, tie it up, and replace it. The garbage bags will be near the cans. At some point we will inevitably need to sort trash again because not everyone will know which thing goes where. It’s not a big deal and there’s no need to stress over it.The River
The River is a non-existent winding path that virtually makes its way through camp so that people aren’t pinned in behind tent ropes in the back. Each camper places themselves along this virtual “bank” to define a walkway that makes S turns back and forth. Set up wherever you like along the bank of the river to watch people and things float by. The goal is to be able to walk a bike from the front of camp all the way to any tent without tripping over things along the way.We can help you figure out how to define the bank the river, and to avoid the prevailing winds and to provide shade for people around you, but it’s ultimately up to you where you go. Everyone has a lot of dear friends in camp, but I would caution against trying to form a protective bubble around people you already know. There are so many opportunities to see each other around the camp, it’s sometimes refreshing to get some distance so that you can have a place to find and lose yourself. This is not a “cafeteria cool kids table” situation, it’s your home to claim a space.

Art Cars

We have 2 art cars in camp
There are all sorts of operational procedures for the Sensatron, but the TL;DR is that while it’s seductive to ride on art cars all week, make sure to get off and go exploring. Except for a few nights where we go out as a camp, we always like to make room for all the fellow playa wanderers. Plan on being surprised by opportunities to ride! That said, I look forward to being surrounded by my favorite people, listening to new favorite music, while we explore a thoroughly, thoroughly amazing place.

Sensatron
New array of lights, new programming, new air shocks, new amplifier, new fabric, new tail lights, new under lights, new front end, new fabric on the poles, new flags, and holy amazing what: thank you to everyone who kicked in for the Sensatron! The premiums came out to $1800, so I’m still short on some of the things I want to do for it, but we made so many amazing improvements and now it’s running great. Thank you again to the 4th of Juplaya Krewe that came out to black rock to help build it up: Eric Jacoby, Scott Keeler, Christopher Paulicka, Helen Hong, Zach Lovering, and Ron. That was great fun, and great work, and now we’re going to enjoy an amazing upgrade to our alien friend from Cygnus. This is the Sensatron’s 8th burn, which is infinity sideways.

We’ll need help setting it up and breaking it down, and if anyone wants to kick down $$$ for the storage fee, gas, conduit, screws, and on and on, feel =free=. All money that comes in for the Sensatron goes into endless things that will improve it.

The Infernal Wanderer
Zach and Rodin are pioneering the Wanderer out to the playa while Eric and Mary stay at the homestead to spawn. Congratulations, you two/three!

Omega-2
Bender, Keeler, Sasha, et al. are launching their salvage ship into deep space for deep playa adventures.

di Ser Piero
Will Crawford is reinventing his personal transport for the playa this year, and will be making periodic ice runs.

LOADING UP AND MOVING OUT

“All Hands” Truck Loading Party at The Storage Unit (Sunday, August 27th, Noon)

We could use all hands to get things packed nicely into the truck. This is a volunteer mission. You can arrive late, leave early, help load only your things, or stay all day and help us lug all the stuff from all over town into the big rental truck.

We’ll begin meeting at the Storage Unit in El Segundo at noon, and when the truck is loaded with stuff we’ll head over to Cosmo’s place to pick up bicycles and end the day with a load-in party at Cosmo’s Tower. ALL HANDS! <- that can make it, no stress and no worries if you can’t make it… Note: The truck is a camp resource that is paid for by donations. One truck costs about $2500 to rent and about $800 in gas, $200 in cleaning fees, etc. Sometimes we need to get a second smaller truck. If you would like to contribute toward the trucking the journey to and from burning man for the camp infrastructure (whether you have things on the truck or not) then consider making a donation. Whatever money we get goes into rentals, fuels, upgrades, and sustenance.

Increase our budget for awesomeness with a voluntary and anonymous donation:

Storage Unit Address: The storage facility is pretty well-hidden behind the parking lot at:

1 Chapman Way
El Segundo, CA 90245

It’s just South of Alaska on Douglas Street.  Call Jason Siadek if you need access to the security code, or follow us in.

The First Transport Is Away! (Monday, August 21st)

The truck begins its intrepid journey to the playa.

Reviving the Sensatron (Tuesday, August 22nd)

The truck arrives at the ranch in Gerlach where we’ll prepare the Sensi for the burn.

EARLY ARRIVAL ON PLAYA (Wednesday, August 23rd)

Early settlers will start setting up Post Nuclear Family (2016 at 4:45 and “High Renaissance”)

ALL WEEK: SUNSET

NO F#RKS GIVEN
Sara will host an open mic 2 minute story-telling and sharing session in the living room for anyone to share whatever you want to share. Bring your dinner and listen in or share, there will be no f#rks given.

We otherwise do not have planned meals or scheduled chores. Be prepared to feed and clean up after yourself. If anyone wants to share food, go for it. There are a lot of vegans and vegetarians in camp and a lot of people don’t want gluten, so if you plan on sharing please keep those various things in mind. THE KITCHEN is for everyone, so feel free to cook up a storm. We have strategic reserves if we ever get low on gas (which we never have). Anyone who wants to share news from the day and plans for the night should come on home around dinner time.

SUNDAY:SUNDAY, AUGUST 27TH: BURNING MAN BEGINS!

The gates open this year on Saturday at midnight! The line is long, it is not infinite. Be prepared to wait. Meet the cool people around you. Relax. Act casual on adult drinks because the police are very serious about DUIs, even on the surface of the playa and at 0mph.

MONDAY: JACK SHIT

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TUESDAY NIGHT: ADVENTURE NIGHT: LEVEL 3

Freeform roleplaying on the playa! No dice, no rules, just total characters. If you would like to participate, make up a character that you would like to play, piece together a costume, and maybe a magic item (or some high tech gear). Your character can be from any milieu, but medieval fantasy is the common tongue. It goes from about 9pm to midnight, usually ending at a tavern to share stories. Like always, feel free to join in, break off, form your own group, etc.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT: ANIMAL NIGHT

Inhabit your spirit animal! Gather on the Sensatron (and bikes and other art cars) in animal form and we’ll go out onto the playa in full effect! If the Sensatron is full you may need to bike along.

IMG_1255-2

THURSDAY:ULTRA VIOLET PORTRAIT NIGHT

There will be props, body paint, costume pieces, black lights and ultra violet radiation galore. If you have UV reactive body paints, makeup and costume props to lend then rad! (literally)

FRIDAY NIGHT: SPACE NIGHT

Fill up your tanks with the best gas for Outer Space!  (our technicians recommend 78% Nitrogen, 21% Oxygen, 1% Argon). We’ll buzz the spacey art and visit the observatory and maybe see if we can find any of our home worlds. Midnight: Surprise Guest DJ for deeeeep spaaaaace beeeeeats!

SATURDAY AFTERNOON FINAL RECYCLING RUN

According to their website the recycling camp packs up on Sunday at 5pm, but they don’t like to be overwhelmed, so we’ll get them early on Saturday with our crushed cans (only).

SATURDAY NIGHT: MAN ON FIRE!

We’ll drive the Sensatron out just before dark and watch the man burn.

SUNDAY AFTERNOON: MOOP PATROL

Afternoon: Let’s take the Sensatron out for a massive MOOP patrol and clean the desert!  If you’re leaving before Sunday make sure to MOOP in your final hours to maximize your minimal impact. We MOOP all week, but the MOOP gyre builds toward the end.

MONDAY: EXODUS

Final reload of the truck. The truck drives away Monday late afternoon from a clean patch of playa. Some people will stay behind to extract what remaining triptonium we can find and then leave Tuesday or Wednesday. That’s my plan, anyway.
If you have to leave before the truck is packed make sure to bundle all of your stuff together and LABEL it clearly, and place it near the truck.
Don’t leave gear behind without giving it to someone personally.

Driving Away
If you’re caught in a “pulse” release of cars, turn off your engine after each pulse. They pulse every 60 minutes or so, so it’s better to start the car than leave it running.

Don’t throw away your garbage in local trashcans along the way. You can bring it to specific places:
http://survival.burningman.com/leave-no-trace/pack-it-out/#.UZMgKpVk4qY

The Sensatron returns to the hills…

The Truck Returns to Cosmo’s House (probably Wednesday evening)

We will need help unloading the truck back at Cosmo’s house. We need to leave the driveway clear and all stuff out of Cosmo’s house within a week, preferably on Wednesday night.

If anyone has an event, please let camp at post nuclear family dot com know and we’ll add it to the site.
(We’ve been spammed by attack robots, so we have to do things manually.)

TIPS

  • Be cool, neighborly, learn names if you’re feeling bold. Go on adventures with some of these familiar “strangers” you’re camping with. Everyone is one or two degrees of separation from a dear friend.
  • Try to put your stuff away. Make sure things don’t blow around. Anything glass will get knocked over, so avoid glass and if you see a situation getting precarious you may want to get involved. The beautiful wine glasses dancing on the fluttering tablecloth in “Amelie” were actually made of plastic. When winds pick up it’s good to look around camp and see what needs battening.
  • Stake your tent down, and light your tent stakes if you can, solar lamps are great. If you can light your tent frontage along the river it will make a nice path. Cover the sharp points of your tent stakes and aim the guy lines away from walking areas. If anyone has to step over a guy line to get by, it’s in the wrong place.
  • MOOP the camp regularly throughout the day. If you ever have spare energy, take a moment to roam around looking for feathers, bottle caps, zip tie fragments, barbie heads, and… well that’s pretty much it. Feel free to deposit random camp MOOP in the camp’s trash bins.
  • Keep your water bottle full, make sure you have some whenever you go out. Check out your water supply throughout the week, if you have too much water for the week, share your water in the kitchen. If you have too little, bum some off anyone that offers.
  • Spit your toothpaste out into your trash.
  • You may want to bring baby wipes for vicar’s baths, cotton swabs for your ears, medicated powder for your crotch, earplugs for your butt, and buttplugs for your friends. Also eye masks are great for attempting to sleep while the sun decides otherwise.
  • If you see someone struggling with something heavy or awkward, you might consider jumping up like a hero and saving the day.
  • Make that crucial choice whether to go back out or not, and love your decision.
  • Get shade when you can.
  • Enjoy yourself. This too shall pass, so let it go. If you’re feeling generally fucked try to remember HALT, you might: “hungry? angry? lonely? tired?”