The B-Man and I, having never experienced Burning Man, asked the people we knew who had already participated what to expect. Their answers were maddeningly vague. “You just have to experience it on your own,” was the usual answer. They were right. It’s too complex to explain with words.

However, a lack of information did not prevent The B-Man from exercising what I’ve come to see as a strong trait shared by the people from the Midwest: making sure everyone is well-fed. Despite the fact that we were told it’s too hot to cook and people are too tired to eat and everyone in our tribe are carnivores, The B-Man forged ahead and provided us with incredible meals everyone raved about. Quiche, sweet and sour meatballs, individual macaroni and cheese cups, and a Mediterranean Smorgasbord (he’s Scandahoovian, doncha know), plus a slew of other munchables. We were all so grateful.

He made, right in front of everyone, the perfect Burning Man fruit salad! Canned fruit cocktail chilled in the cooler, shredded coconut, a box of vanilla pudding, all squished up in a Zip-loc bag. Mmm, refreshing and delicious.

What seemed to amaze people most about The B-Man was the fact that he went at all. No one (except me) believed he was up for the challenge and would back out before the event. The P’s even waited to buy their tickets until the last minute because they were so sure he would bail and they were planning on buying ours.

One thing I’ve learned living with The B-Man is it’s easy to underestimate him, and it’s kinda wonderful for everyone when we’re proved wrong.

Our tribe had planned several themed days, one which was The Stepford Wives. We dressed up like the women from the original film and slowly walked through the other camps as if we were, well, robots. We drifted past the other Burners dreamily offering Chex mix, muffins, and extolling the virtues of Easy-Off, and leaving a trail of perplexed faces and confused smiles. It was great fun.

While we were dressed as the prim Stepford Wives, The B-Man had opted to be the Stepford Hoochie. He wore a shorter dress than any of us and had a size 66 double jeez chest (courtesy of two pink balloons). He strutted with sheer sassiness and was cheered by everyone as the defiant human counterpoint to our mechanical behavior. He was definitely the crowd favorite.

On the night of the burn, I wore a vintage prom dress from the ’50’s. It’s beautiful and I loved the idea of wearing my fancy white dress in the desert. I just had my hair cut short for Burning Man, and I didn’t want to wear a wig because it was too hot, and I didn’t think I looked too good, but hey, it’s Burning Man and I didn’t care if I looked like a freak.

When The B-Man saw me, he said I was lovely and he loved me very much.

These are the reasons why The B-Man will now be called The Amazing B-Man.