Thursday, April 26, 2012

The one that didn't really get away

It turns out that the truck I bidded up the price on last Sunday has now been offered to me.  Apparently the original high bidder was unable to finance the truck with his bank because it has over 200,000 miles, so I got the chance to buy it as the 2nd highest bidder.  And I've accepted!  So now I just have to get it somehow.

I've been excited about this all day... what fun, I get to buy a strange truck and turn it into something stranger.  The book value on similar trucks seems to be in the $9 - $11,000 range, so I actually think this is a steal.  I should be able to get this beast home for around $8200 including California registration, tax, the $80 flight to Phoenix, taxi to the auction place, diesel to drive home, etc.  So that means when I'm all done with this adventure in the Fall of 2013 after taking it to two Burning Mans, I won't be losing too much money.  Lets face it, this is not about the money.  This is about a crazy dream and following it to see where the dream leads me.  This is a statement of expression that I am compelled to share.

I'm relieved that the truck search is now over, because it was starting to get very time consuming.  And by choosing to go with the flow and take what the universe throws into my lap, the truck is smaller than my recent ambition.  Actually it's more in line with my original ambition, and should be a fairly reasonable size.  It's not excessively large.  This is not about my ego anyway, at least I hope it isn't.  I really want to express my craft of automotive engineering with this thing, and hope I'm not unlike all those other artists at Burning Man who toil away building things that are their passion.  This is not about me or making my name, but about having a vision and creating it and bringing it into a collective reality.

My first year at Burning Man in 2006 was an experience which blew me away.  I'll never forget my first day at Chillonia on Esplanade and 2:30, when off in the distance I saw a pagoda.  I thought, that's cool, an installation way out there in the dust.  Then in the dusty distance, it moved!  Right then I was hooked on Mutant Vehicles.  I got to see the inaugural year of the Never Was Haul, a 3-storey Victorian mansion on wheels.  And last year I was privileged enough to camp and help out Tahoe Twisted, an awesome group out of Lake Tahoe who brought the biggest and baddest Mutant Vehicle ever, Christina the 65 foot Chris Craft on a cement mixer chassis.

So back to 2006.  My vision is really simple.  I want this truck to look like a piece of art.  And then I want to blow people away when they see it moving.  I'm pretty sure very few people have seen a shipwreck.  And I am sure that nobody has seen this:  A slow-moving shipwreck, coming your way.  How's that for a metaphor?

BTW, here's the link to the truck: