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Hope Feels Good
by Mathew Gilbuena

Published on March 10, 2021

At the Everywhen Project, it has been an absolute whirlwind. What day is it today? Is today the same day as yesterday? It's a full-blown production house, perhaps akin to a feature film studio. But there aren't many things quite like this.

A day is filled with phone calls, emails, video chats, shower thoughts, dreamworlds that run in counter-time, sketch pads and note pads, locating and working with new partners and technologies to find ways to invent, iterate and inspire one another to take that next step. To dare to push the vision further. To create something new.

Thankfully there is the #dramabar, a fully staffed virtual bar with 166 brave souls. Our latest conversation is about Bill Murray in a porta-potty, and rubbing magic lamps. It's what we do.

In many ways, the project is filled with creative folks who are only alive when they are creating. We have a blank slate: we dare each other to do things differently. To improve. To figure out why it is the way it is. Why are we using the name Mustachios? Aside from that hilarious Mario GIF from some early 2000s commercial, does it work? Nah. So, Loco Ocos it is. Need help? Go find a Loco Oco. I can't wait to see what they wear.

That's right, it's the square hole! I can't stop watching this. In many ways, its is analogous to those losing their minds over there being another event on the playa. We're creating this thing for you. But, but, there can only be this one thing in the desert, that only can hold a finite number of folks. And if not that, you can only have 50 or less of your friends. Nothing more.

We've all imagined, ahem, about how things out there could be different, so here we are. A community electric grid? Yep, we're doing that. Equal access to all types of land and neighborhoods? Done. A place to sleep away from all that @!&^*$! noise? Well, we'll try. Solar-only zones? Check. A low ticket price? We hope so. Taking care of people in a hostile environment is an incredibly expensive operation.

I've seen some comments complaining about our, ah, Bureaucracy. We have many layers - it's true. Through organizing a collective economy of scale, we're able to negotiate for and transport bathrooms, medical resources, and fund the awesome art that you'll be enjoying out there. We do it because we want to give others the opportunities that were afforded to us: the freedom to think, to have a vision, to nurture that desire to create, to gain access to funds to create, to go through the human experience of success and failure (and much growth!) -- and, finally, if you have the drive and the will, to have a place for others to enjoy and participate in the journey to whatever it was you did. This act of creation is the fabric and foundation of our community, and the source of our joy.

Our team was a bit panicked when the Mandala City map and plans leaked online. Well, that's the Freedom of Information Act for you. With the cat out of the bag, we opened the homestead deed applications, the art applications, and the ticket sales. With the go/no-go decision weeks away from the permit authority, we still need to begin collecting funds so that artists can plan for the builds. Go or no go, our primary mission is to give artists a lifeline to continue creating. And so.. here we are. Please grab a ticket. You're helping an artist make a better tomorrow for us all. The event will happen, in some form or another.

To the folks at the Everywhen: you rock. It is our collective energies, dreams and hopes that keep us all forging ahead, with the team rejoicing in the fierce support (and controversy) from the community. We're creating an art festival in the desert. It's a place we've camped at over the 4th of July. It is a continuation of that journey and dream. And, of course, many of us come back again in August for that other thing in the desert. We're the next generation and our take is a bit different.

Before they were mainstream, don't forget: Burning Man was very controversial. And before them, the Cacophony Society. And before them, the first Homo Sapien who stood up on two legs. After us, it will be that weird colony on Mars. Those people!

Thank you for helping create the shared vision that is the Everywhen: a destination in the desert to develop community, fund art, and to try new things.

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