The ATX Clocktower

In Austin, Texas, on New Year's Eve 2008, we burned time.

A clock tower, fully functional and constructed primarily of wood, counted down the hours on the last day of 2008. Standing more than 34ft, and with more than 90,000 in attendance (burners and non-burners alike), it was lit ablaze by burner crews of specialists. It was the largest metropolitan area burn event ever... taking place, of course, in the largest active burn community in the world--Austin, Texas. Here is the video of the day and the burn:

The event was free to all.

Those who don't know about burners--the last great tribe of mankind--should check out the main site... this is one of the legendary icons of our time. Don't miss it.

Burning Man (Main Site):

Painting: Let It Rain

Let It Rain
by PTM Design

...available from Z Gallerie

Give Peace a Deadline

Book: Give Peace a Deadline
Authors: Nathan Otto and Amber Lupton

I'm holding a knife. Edged blade, Teflon coated and with serrations on the lower part near the haft. The significance of the blade will soon become apparent.

I have very few physical desires. Getting a gift for me proves difficult. This knife is one of two things in this world that I had desired. The person who gave me this knife had no idea of how important it was to me, and I have little to offer in way of thanks.

There is a greater significance. The person who gave me this blade fights for peace. More than that, he has placed a deadline on peace, set milestones and goals for achieving it and has spent all of 2008 circling the globe to gather everyone from church groups, to the Dalai Lama, to friends and family enrolled in this mission.

When I heard about it, I recoiled. My immediate thoughts about world peace are flower wearing commies and love parades that firmly declare that war has no place. Nathan and Amber, the authors of "Give Peace a Deadline", corrected my assumptions. Peace is simply not allowing politically organized violence... not killing. I still shied away from it, and still do.

What really swayed me was when the two authors linked me to Penn & Teller's episode of "Bullshit" centering on world peace. It really is worth watching. As such, I'm re-posting the three parts here:

I still haven't been won over. Not to dedicate many of my own resources to it. I am no fan of communism. Despite the progressive nature of their mission, and that of, I still fear that it will fall into socialist trends. They've won me over enough to promote their book, however.

"Give Peace a Deadline" is well written, with many studies to support their statements and cause. The peace they suggest is a lazy-man's piece, and I believe they will succeed because of it. For those who are not lazy--who want peace with all their being--they have much more active methods included in the book as well.

The book can be purchased off of Amazon here: Give Peace a Deadline