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Sex Guide for the Playa
Don't believe the hype

First of all, let's get something perfectly clear: Sex on the playa may be fun in that "Woo-hoo! I did it!" achievement sort-of way, but in general, it's highly overrated. Sure, there's a certain romanticized notion to bumping uglies in the middle of the god-forsaken desert, but the truth of the matter is, it comes off as much cooler on paper than it does in execution.

Why? For a variety of reasons. For one thing, have you ever laid or kneeled down naked on the hard playa surface? Not exactly comfy, especially if you're going at it for more than a few minutes. And a blanket doesn't exactly help much. And here's another thing: it gets dirty! And I don't mean in a kinked-out, "hit me harder, baby" sort-of way, either. Playa dust gets into every single crevisse of your body, including your mouth and your hair. It's messy, and at times annoying.

Lastly, there's the whole privacy issue. If getting off in front of others is your and your partner's bag, then fantastic! Black Rock City is an exhibitionist's wet dream! But if you get performance anxiety, finding a bit of privacy on the wide-open playa can be a bit difficult. There are people everywhere, and even when you think you're alone, you're never really. Go ahead and go out into the middle of the playa and start getting nasty. See how many people seem to ride by on their bikes just close enough to sneak a peek. It shouldn't be surprising.

As for boinking inside your own tent or RV, again, privacy becomes an issue. How close are you camped to someone else? Chances are, you're here with a group of people, and none of them want to hear you going at it through the thin nylon walls of your tent. And what about an RV? Certainly it's a much more comfortable place to fuck than on an air mattress inside a tent, but unless you're travelling solo or as a pair, you're probably going to have to place a "If this RV's a rockin', don't come knockin'" sign out on the door.

Sure, there are lots of possibilities for sex out here on the playa but don't delude yourself. Sex out here can be fun and certainly worth it but it's fraught with more complications than you're probably bargaining for. Adrian Roberts

Some quick tips

First off, keep in mind: playa mud is not an effective lubricant.

This year, everyone has a camera or a video camera so if you don't want to end up naked on the Web in a hardcore video, stay in your tent.

And remember, just because someone gives you a condom, doesn't mean they want to have sex with you.

And finally, hitting on people in line for the porta-potties hardly ever works but saying "Hey, you wanna come over to my air-conditioned RV to take a shit?" might be worth a shot. Dennis Hinkamp

Wash and brush
I know, I know, it's not very "earthy" or "survivalist" or "edgy" to shower at Burning Man. And it can seem like a precious waste of water, especially when you know the dust is going to gravitate right back onto your skin just as fast as you wash it off. But we're not talking about dust. Playa dust smells good. We're talking about bacteria, which, over the course of several broiling days, grows robust and plentiful as it frolics in the copious sweat accumlating in your armpits and pubes. If you foresee sex in your immediate or near-immediate future, do your partner a favor and at least sponge off.

And while you're at it, brush your teeth too. I love playa people who don't want their partners to smoke because "it's like kissing an ashtray," but then don't bother brushing their own teeth all week long. I'd rather kiss an ashtray than a week-old plateful of spoiled pepperoni, sour BeHop pancake batter, and mold-encrusted Pop Tarts.

Tokyo Rico



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