Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Why Not Buy a Goat?

The Burning Man theme for this year is Caravansary.  Here is a brief summary of what that means (from the Burning Man website):

“For countless centuries, travelers along the Silk Route crossed paths in caravansaries, a network of oases and sanctuaries that dotted the 4,000-mile road from Europe to East Asia. These bustling caravan stops offered more than just shelter from the desert wilderness; they were vital centers of cultural exchange, bringing together traders, pilgrims, monks, nomads, traveling entertainers, and wild-eyed adventurers from all points of the compass to share their stories around a common fire.”

I’m excited about this theme.  It makes perfect sense for the playa’s physical conditions and community of amazing people from around the world.  True there was much commerce along the Silk Route and there is really none at Burning Man, but I don’t think that is a disconnect.  Instead of exchanging goods, we simply give.

At Burning Man we give stories, ideas, art, joy, hugs, food, shelter, clothing, love, companionship, happiness, support, laughs, tears and so much more.

Really, at Burning Man, we give ourselves.  It is the most valuable gift anyone can give and receive.  Because giving oneself to another is love isn’t it? Everybody should be loved.

With that said, part of the fun is giving keepsakes that represent our time together at home (Burners call the playa home – this place we live in 51 weeks of the year outside of Burning Man is just the default world).  I have been given necklaces, bracelets, patches, stickers, shirts, rings and charms as reminders of the people I have met and shared time with on the playa. 

Our camp has given away metal Burning Man cutouts from the lion’s head on our art car (Ian is an amazing craftsman).  



Rich and I gave away inscribed dogtags that fit the Cargo Cult theme of last year and represented the Colorado contingent of our camp.  I personally gave away poems punched out on a typewriter to my camp mates and neighbors. 



This year, Rich and I are planning on giving away bracelets with the help of a brilliant artist friend.   The idea comes from the Caravansary theme.  The bracelets will have beads and silk (get it – silk for the Silk Route) that are the colors from Colorado’s state flag.  And then the part I love the most is the centerpiece of the bracelet – a goat.



It will actually be a goat Milagro.  Milagro means ‘miracle’ and each one represents a wish or a prayer and is meant to bring  good luck and happiness and prosperity.  So that is good, right?

On the Burning Man site, they explain Caravansary in more detail and include some Proverbs of the Caravan of Dreams.  My favorite one is this:

“If you have no troubles, why not buy a goat?”

Oh my gosh that is beautiful. And it explains why nobody I know owns a goat.  I wish everybody had a goat.  I need a goat.  Well, at Burning Man, we will give some goats away in the form of these bracelets.

For the past week, I can’t stop saying it in my head the way Kramer does when he is doing the live movie phone service on Seinfeld (“Why don’t you just tell me what movie you want to see…”). 

I keep thinking, “If you have no troubles, (cue Kramer voice) why not buy a goat?”



17 comments:

  1. I'm wearing the stupidest grin right now--raised drinking goatmilk, milking goats, and playing with kids every spring. (baby goats are called kids--and did you know they can run up trees? Hit six feet high easy!) Childhood snapshots in my mind.... I think, "why not buy a goat?" is gonna stick with me for a while. :)

    Hey, can I donate to your trip and get one of those bracelets? (and one for my mum, the goat herder?) Totally serious.

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    1. Ha, awesome - glad this stirred up fond memories. You may not donate to my trip but you may send me your addy and I will give you and your mum bracelets. It may be a few months though. My email is on my profile.

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  2. Love it!

    Your Buddy Kind

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    1. You and our camp mates will be the first recipients, Ian. Well, after Chantel (above), lol.

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  3. That is a great theme and your gift is perfect. I've never been to Burning Man but it sounds amazing. Have a great time.

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    1. Burning Man is a way of life that I wish everyone would experience.

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  4. Um we might eventually buy a goat or two. If we can handle the chickens. I totally want one of your bracelets.

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  5. Love this idea, and agree with your statement that everyone should have love. And goats. I'm going to need one of those goat bracelets...my birthday is right around the corner ya know??

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    1. All you want is a bracelet? What about Vegas?

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    2. Vegas is awesome, but I'll settle for a goat.

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  6. I think people are going to love your goat bracelets!

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    1. They will. They love getting anything. I think these will be a real hit with all the meaning behind them.

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  7. That is really cool! And as weird as it sounds, I love your typewriter! When I was a kid we had a big, metal serious typewriter and then we had a little typewriter for us kids to use. It didn't have smileys on it, but it was along the same lines. I hadn't thought of that typewriter for years until I saw yours in that photo.

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  8. I have always wanted to go to Burning Man since hearing about it long ago. I have just never made it. One of these years... *sigh*

    My sister has goats. She milks them and thinks they are the most wonderful thing around. She can have them, I will stick to cows.

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  9. First, Crap! I have somehow missed your last several posts. You already know I'm a stalker, but if I comment on a couple of posts that are from like, 2 months ago, don't be all weirded out. Anyway, I love your goat present idea. Super cool, and I can't wait to read about this years experiences at Burning Man. I wish I could go...

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  10. I don't know you but feel like I do. I've known Dawn McBride for almost 5 years and we work together. I was supposed to meet you last year, or year before can't remember, as you made your way through Salt Lake but was unable to make it. We have a close friend that is obsessed with everything goats and wants to own several of them. We (I) tease her all the time about this....because really....why would anyone own a goat???? But now....after reading your post I get it!! She's so freaking happy and worry free why not buy a goat. So to you I say thank you!!! Thank you for making this whole need for a goat and opening my eyes to the beauty of goats make sense. I look forward to meeting you guys one day as you make your way through the Great Valley of Salt Lake City. Cheers!!!

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Gimmie some lip