7-28-17 Camp Resources Information Update
General Thoughts & Intro
KK Campers, Just a reminder about KK camp resources and your relationship with them, as we pack and make final preparations for the burn. As you all know, a camp at Burning Man is a community. We share resources, share experiences, and we work together to create and gift and do more than we can do as individuals.
A big part of that is being a responsible citizen in our camp as well as in BRC and in the world. Once again, if you have not read the first timers guide and the survival guide, you should really do that now. And the ten principles.
To get back to the camp resources, I wanted to discuss what the camp resources are, and how to interact with them. This will only cover the major ones, and will be discussed in more detail at the next camp meeting as well as in further emails and updates. If you have questions, please direct them to veteran camp members, your pod leads, and your camp leads if you can't get an answer from the other sources. We want to help, but also, radical self reliance is a super sexy virtue.
Remember as well, that your camp dues do not cover even half the cost of camp. The rest come from fundraising and other efforts that we do year-round. The more careful you are with our community resources, the more you are respecting the sacrifices that your friends made all year for you to have this camp and this experience.
Camp provides dinner every night. There will be vegetarian options, and usually something vegan as well. If you have any particular allergies, please make it known in the poll that Joelle put up on the KKBM17 Facebook page. In the end, you are responsible for checking what is in the food and also, if you have very restrictive dietary needs, you should be bringing your own food as backup, snacks, etc.
Camp food is budgeted and purchased for campers only. Your guests are not allowed to eat, no matter how close they are to you. Often we have some leftovers, and once the kitchen gives you the all clear, we can share with others. But don't pester them, and don't take food for outsiders before everyone in the camp has eaten their fill.
Breakfast is made most days, but there are no formal shifts. Speak to the kitchen leads if you want to take on a breakfast. We always have eggs, bacon and usually some pancake mix. Often, whoever wakes up and feels like cooking takes the lead. The kitchen must be cleaned and restored to its proper setup before the first shift starts for dinner prep. This is a community effort, by us, for us. Nobody serves and caters to you.
Each camper is responsible for bringing their own plate, cup, fork, spoon, knife, napkins or paper towels etc. Ask fellow campers for good suggestions. We do not do disposable and we do not provide any utensils or plates. Remember, your garbage is your own responsibility, and your provision of everything you need to eat is your responsibility. If you do not have this, you will have a problem trying to eat with your hands.
Kitchen is 100% off limits to anyone who is not cooking for the camp (breakfast or dinner). Do not go in there. Not to wash your plate, not to use a knife, not to take food. Food is a camp resource, and only for communal meals. Snacks are not provided by the camp. Sometimes kitchen crew may bring around plates of some treat, but that is a bonus gift that they do at their discretion, and not something you can rely on. Ice is not provided by the camp, you can go buy some at the ice sale places on playa (bring cash for that).
In kitchen, the leads are in charge. Listen to them and do what they say. It makes it easier for everyone.
We all chip in (part of dues) for water for the camp. We pay by the gallon, based on what we use. This water is only for campers, and not to be shared outside the camp. Bring some type of gallon jug, camelback and/or other vessels to get water to your pod or tent and to carry around with you on playa. DO NOT WASTE. Also, remember that we pay for both clean water and for removal of grey (dirty) water. So, if you make waste water, we are paying for it twice. On the scale of a 200 person camp, this adds up quick. (also, if you don't know about grey water and black water and water disposal on playa, you need to read the BM survival guide ASAP).
Our camp builds shower stalls for campers to use. These are outdoor wooden stalls, that drain into an evap pond for the grey water. There is a rope system for you to raise your shower bag up. What is a shower bag and do I need one? Glad you asked. There is no system built in to bring your water to the showers or to heat it. You need to purchase a solar shower bag (like this: https://smile.amazon.com/Coleman-2000014865-5-Gallon-Solar-Shower/dp/B0009PUT20/). You then fill it with water from the camp water. Careful, it weighs over 40 pounds when full. Then, you leave it our in the sun for a few hours so it heats up. When you are happy with it's heat level, you take it to the shower stall and string it up and then shower with it. One 5 gallon bag should be enough for 2 showers, or two people to shower. Seriously. Remember, you will be dusty all the time. Your hair will be dusty all the time. If this is a problem for you, I have someone ready to buy your ticket :-). There is no excuse for using more than one bag for a shower. Really. When you finish your shower, remember to take ALL your things from the stall. This is not a place to "gift" people your leftover soap and shampoo. Anything left there is MOOP and bad behavior. ALSO, write your name all over and decorate your shower bag. We all buy the same cheap one, and they tend to get lost, misplaced, re-appropriated regularly. Make it special and it is more likely to remain yours.
Our camp is spending almost $30,000 for electricity this year. Prices have gone way up, and things we intended fell through, and so here we are. Fuel is costly on playa. We need to do everything to ensure that people are all taken care of and that our grid meets our needs. Also, less fuel used lowers our cost a lot. Our power company estimates we will burn 1,000 gallons this year. Lets see if we can keep that number lower and be good citizens (also, please do not reply with your thoughts on our power cost and fuel usage - really - we spent months agonizing over options, this is the best we can do this year, and next year we hopefully will have a better and cheaper solution - but comments from the sidelines this late in the game are not appreciated).
You can help by following these rules:
- No air conditioners, no heaters of any kind, no microwaves or other electric appliances. Seriously. We will cut off any pod from power that is found doing these things.
- Fans (including swamp coolers) and coffee makers are allowed
- Charging phones, batteries, cameras etc is obviously allowed.
- Lights for pods should be LED as much as possible.
- Turn off all lights during the day, unplug things when not in use. At night, we prefer lights to be on even if nobody is in the pod, for safety purposes.
- EXTENSION CORDS - IMPORTANT - Make sure you ONLY purchase 12 gauge cords (sometimes noted as "12/3" on the product description). Cords must be for outdoors. Use only outdoor, commercial grade power strips. This is needed to (a) minimize power draw and (b) safety . It does rain at Burning Man. It also gets hot. strained systems can cause fire. WE are all surrounded by copious amounts of flammable tarps, materials, fuels, etc. Do NOT be cheap. We will unplug and remove any cheap or lower quality extension cords.
Please note that each POD has access to a spider box (some pods may share a box), but there are not enough outlets for each tent/person to get their own. Therefore, work with your pod to get enough extension cords and splitters to run the cords up the pod structure poles and drop them down in various places near tents, and then each tent can plug a shorter cord into those splitters and power strips. If this is confusing to you, speak to your pod leads, to the pod queen and king (Amanda and link) or to your nearest elder resource. Good cords and such are not cheap, but this is not an optional expense if you want access to power.
RVs all plug into the grid directly. There is absolutely NO running of your RV generator (or any other generator) in our camp. This is a huge safety risk and not tolerated.
We have porta potties in our camp. We pay a lot of money to rent them and to have them serviced. We do this, because it saves us all the struggle of having to walk 4 blocks at inconvenient times just to be able to use a toilet. It is great, really. Just ask anyone who was there pre-porto days. However, they don't get serviced every day, and each use is one less space for more waste. SO, like the rest of our resources, these are NOT to be used for anyone outside our camp. Do not offer, do not tell anyone that we have them. Really. People are crafty and sneaky at BM. If you see non campers using the porto potties, please tell them that these are private and ask them not to use it. Together, we can save our potties from becoming a shitstorm.
DO NOT leave your garbage in the porto potties, they are not a dumping ground. DO NOT throw rash in the porto potties. FYI - United can't remove trash from the portos, and your camp lead team has to personally remove it if you throw something stupid in there.
DO be considerate, wipe the seat, lift the seat, don't squat and spray, just generally be a great citizen. Clean up a mess if you find it. Light the way for your spray at night. Leave the potty as you would want to find it, because you may be the nest person to find it.
KK has lots of tools. We build with them. We look a them fondly. Tools are our friend.
If you need to do something which requires a tool, you MUST ask permission from one of the build leads (Ken, Mark, Isa, etc) OR the owner of the tool if it is not a KK tool. You must know how to use and care for the tool (ask for a lesson if you need one, we all love teaching).
When done with any tool, it must be returned to the proper place and put away. ASAP. There is no excuse for leaving valuable tools around your POD just because you decided to have a beer to celebrate that one screw you successfully drove into the wood.
Remember, you are responsible for our own garbage. there will be some collective recycling (aluminum cans only), and some compost collection. However, make sure that you de-MOOP all of your things before you bring them to cut on waste, and make sure that you have a plan to take your garbage out at the end of the burn. THERE IS NO CAMP GARBAGE.
As always - please - no glass bottles. It is a lot of heavy breakable mess to take out. Champagne and wine is the exception, due to lack of better options.