WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

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WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby sftex » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:06 pm

Hi! my name is Tex and I have a little project that grew BIG since last year's "Rites of Passage"

It's called WhyTheNose? and it's dedicated to the act of wearing clown nose in public, just to brighten people's days!

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Maybe you visited my site after you noticed it featured in Jack Rabbit Speaks?
Maybe you were one of the 23,574 Burners who helped CRASH MY SERVER within 24 hours! :D :) :shock:

Last year, I asked for help with the project, Mark Day in San Francisco answered and we made a f*ckin' magical video on the Playa!
Here's that video again, it was also featured by Burning Man on the Official Facebook page, where it was shared by over 1000 people! (Thanks!)



and again we did a video at Burnal Equinox:



and in addition to the hundreds of spots it's been mentioned, I even got some syndicated TV time...which found me getting mails from all over the country :)

http://www.rightthisminute.com/video/why-clown-nose

WhyTheNose has changed my life...it's become the ultimate expression of all the lessons the beautiful people out on the Playa have taught me.

In a scant 5 years, the Burn and it's inhabitants have transformed me from the "odd guy" in Suburbia to "THIS"
AND, THIS is a constant creative state, where I wear a nose 90% of time I'm out of the house.
At the grocery store, post office, gas station, bookstore, flea market, library, men's room (that's a hoot).

You name the location where I've been in the last year, I've worn the nose.
Why? Because it's the quickest way to break into the "normals" lives and open the door to their heart.
It works.
It works so goddamn well that I know I've found my THING.
Some of you have welding, fire, sculpture, wood, art cars....and those are IMPRESSIVE.
So impressive in fact, that I was always wondering what MY place was in all this beauty? In the center of the Universe, amidst the most amazing and beautiful and heartfelt beings on Earth, what's my art?
How was I supposed to make a difference?

And then the Nose barged it's way into my heart and other hearts everyday as I give them out freely...and have life changing conversations with the people who ask me, "Why the nose?"
I've been given this and I understand that the meaning in life is to find your gift, with the purpose being to give it away.
I can't give them away fast enough, because people are hungry for interaction and authenticity, they are hungry for love and happiness.

The nose gives them license to be child again and get back to the innocence they've lost. It's what WE feel on the Playa, and most of us FEEL that every day.
THEY NEED IT, THE "Normals", the "Others", everyone who hasn't had their shot an in-person experience of meeting the Creator out in the dust.
The nose inspires them that there is HOPE beyond their current world, their bad dream. They experience a little bit of the Best of the Playa when I pull their nose out of my messenger bag and hand it to them.
They f*ckin squeal usually, they laugh, they giggle and CAN NEVER BELIEVE THAT SOMEONE IF GIVING THEM HAPPINESS FOR FREE.
And then, right THEN, I have them and WE (you and I) have OUR shot at giving them the only thing they ever really needed:
FREEDOM AND JOY.

Here's my belief:

Image

Go ahead, call me a hippie...a damn passionate, clowny, handsome, inspired, evangelizing, Playa-reborn rainbow.

Here's where I need your help:

I plan on taking 55,000 (or so) noses to the Playa and turning Wednesday into WHYTHENOSE WEDNESDAY, right after Tutu Tuesday.


That's right, 55,000! and I need your help passing them out!

I need a team of Burners to gift me a few hours between Gate Opening and Wednesday afternoon and help spread these noses.
Even if you have an hour or two one day, it would be a huge gift to this project.

You don't even have to LIKE clowns, but it helps.
Nope, I'm not asking you to wear the noses you give out, when you get back to your non-Playa home.
I'm only asking for you to send this gift back home with everyone we can get them into the hands of...even YOU.
Perhaps, then, when they are refound in a bag, crisp and fresh or worn and dusty, THEY'LL INSPIRE YOU OR OTHERS.
...Inspire someone to go out and do something equally ridiculous everyday to change this world.

Otherwise, why the fluck would you be at the Burn anyway? :D

Wanna help?

Ping me:

Image

Thanks for reading and I hope this will find a lot of interested souls.
Tex
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Sham » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:12 pm

Maybe, just maybe, they can be included in the information guide given out at the gate--along with instructions.
Hey, give it a try.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby junglesmacks » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:15 pm

Fucking awesome :D

..and holy hell MOOP potential on a ridiculous scale. Imagine even 5% of those blowing around in the wind.. :cry:
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:16 pm

Let's just stipulate that I make a comment about Gogol here.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Rice » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:18 pm

Shambala wrote:Maybe, just maybe, they can be included in the information guide given out at the gate--along with instructions.
Hey, give it a try.

Yes, some of the sexy guys and gals at gate do wear clown noses.

But gate does not hand out stuff. That would be Greeters.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby B the B » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:18 pm

I'll tell you what, if this works as well as you hope, you're gonna do some major brain trauma to anyone out there who is coulrophobic.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Eric » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:31 pm

B the B wrote:I'll tell you what, if this works as well as you hope, you're gonna do some major brain trauma to anyone out there who is coulrophobic.


Those people need brain trauma.

Spread clown-love, baby!
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby trilobyte » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:43 pm

Perhaps you could connect with the folks at Arctica and maybe Center Camp Cafe. Those seem like great points to have volunteers distributing noses on Tuesday and Wednesday.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Sham » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:44 pm

Hey sftex, do you expect all the clown noses to be worn on faces? :roll:
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:49 pm

Simon's real sig line?

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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby lemur » Wed Mar 14, 2012 7:16 pm

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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:16 pm

Simon's real sig line?

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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Sham » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:10 am

The cheapest I found these noses is 25 cents each in bulk on ebay. That's $13,750 in red, spongy balls that will most likely be collected at the trash fence in the deep playa. These sponges are certainly moop-worthy.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby trilobyte » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:44 am

Hopefully those who aren't interested just politely decline. :)
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Mar 15, 2012 10:23 am

trilobyte wrote:Hopefully those who aren't interested just politely decline. :)

Oooh, oooh! Great seminar idea for Center Camp Cafe--How to Politely Decline Enforced Gifting!
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby lemur » Thu Mar 15, 2012 11:43 am

clown noses are the pistachio shells of 2012
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby VultureChow » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:16 pm

Shambala wrote:The cheapest I found these noses is 25 cents each in bulk on ebay. That's $13,750 in red, spongy balls that will most likely be collected at the trash fence in the deep playa. These sponges are certainly moop-worthy.



They should apply for a grant

Black Rock Desert prevailing winds and seed disbursement modeling

At least they're easy to spot and pick up. Sounds like fun.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Ugly Dougly » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:28 pm

Shambala wrote:The cheapest I found these noses is 25 cents each in bulk on ebay. That's $13,750 in red, spongy balls that will most likely be collected at the trash fence in the deep playa. These sponges are certainly moop-worthy.

Now you know where to find free sponges.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Bob » Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:01 pm

I think the current orange safety fence has a nominal 3x2 inch mesh, so I'm wondering how efficiently it would trap 2-inch foam noses. I've observed that a great number of condoms (used, as well as still in the package) and ziplock bindle bags (usually) emptied of their narcotic contents manage to cease their peregrinations at the trash fence, but perhaps a wind tunnel study of foam noses would be in order.

As an historical note, I recall the prototype trash fence circa 1996-1998 was a short width of 1/2-inch or 3/4-inch bird netting. Would have stopped foam noses, but it was pretty feeble in every other respect.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby sftex » Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:00 pm

Well, first up...GODDAMN THANK YOU ALL!

Seriously, I'm already overwhelmed in the first 24 hours of this post.
I KNOW this is RIGHT :)

OK, so I'll try to answer all the questions, because I certainly don't have it ALL figured out yet.

FIRST, THERE'S the potential of MOOP. That's paramount in my mind under logistical concerns. My knee jerk reaction is that it's no more MOOP than the Greeter packets or other gifts. (BTW, I AM a Greeter) Also, the act of people politely declining is always their option.

My tentative plan, until smarter minds prevail, is to put the nose and a card (with how to reach me with pictures or stories) into a tiny ziplock baggie. This tactic worked well at Santacon/SantaClown 2011 where I gave out 150, including buttons.

So, beyond MOOP concerns, what IS the best way to distribute up to 55,000 in the first three days of the Burn? I have friends who head up the Volunteer table and it's been hinted I might even have a table to the Volunteer Roundup. Still, I need camps and people to put time into this, however much.

As an aside, I can just see this as a story on Conan or Kimmel about how "those sexed-up desert hippies" launched a movement with the "New Peace Symbol" and it's a freakin' clown nose. I bet Oprah comes out of retirement for this one.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby lemur » Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:50 pm

sftex wrote:Well, first up...GODDAMN THANK YOU ALL!

Seriously, I'm already overwhelmed in the first 24 hours of this post.
I KNOW this is RIGHT :)

OK, so I'll try to answer all the questions, because I certainly don't have it ALL figured out yet.

FIRST, THERE'S the potential of MOOP. That's paramount in my mind under logistical concerns. My knee jerk reaction is that it's no more MOOP than the Greeter packets or other gifts. (BTW, I AM a Greeter) Also, the act of people politely declining is always their option.

My tentative plan, until smarter minds prevail, is to put the nose and a card (with how to reach me with pictures or stories) into a tiny ziplock baggie. This tactic worked well at Santacon/SantaClown 2011 where I gave out 150, including buttons.

So, beyond MOOP concerns, what IS the best way to distribute up to 55,000 in the first three days of the Burn? I have friends who head up the Volunteer table and it's been hinted I might even have a table to the Volunteer Roundup. Still, I need camps and people to put time into this, however much.

As an aside, I can just see this as a story on Conan or Kimmel about how "those sexed-up desert hippies" launched a movement with the "New Peace Symbol" and it's a freakin' clown nose. I bet Oprah comes out of retirement for this one.


moop potential? i dont think itd be flippant to say these WILL be mooped, if you somehow are able to hand out 55,000 of them there will surely be at least hundreds as moop.

I dont really see it the same as a sticker/whatwherewhen/map.... those might end up as moop, but they are surely more of a bit of burning man ephemera and a 'keepsake' to many than some made in china foam nose.... and really, about 'other gifts' ..this seems to be exactly the type of gift that is commonly suggested that newbies/people not bring: chinese trinket junk that nobody 'really' wants ..

(sure they can say no.. but why plan to bring so many if you expect people to say 'no' .....i certainly would say no, and im pretty sure many of the people i know at the burn would say no as well... many many people wont want this 'gift'.. and yet youre expecting to give one to over 90% of the people at burning man... )

your tentative plan sounds like TONS MORE MOOP...baggies and bits of paper...

about handing them out... why would i help you? (not asked in a negative way) ..i mean, its your idea, you like it.. and certainly as we see in this thread some people think its a neat idea, but, what is gonna cause the kind of workforce youd need to hand out 55,000 of these to help you? just liking the idea is one thing.. but actually implementing your plan is another.... people dont want to be stuck with boxes of yer clown noses at the end of the event when youre nowhere to be found.... ..i certainly wouldnt be interested in spending my time at the burn handing them out to my village even if you dropped a box off to us.. and who is gonna have as much passion for this idea as you? youre gonna need to give people a good reason to get involved (incentives?)


as for your envisioning getting in the media for this..... im sure some other sharks would love to eat ya up for that comment.. but really, i think yer just envisioning way too much good for this project and as i see it not really making note of the possible disaster of you being stuck with 10,000$ worth of clown noses at the end of burning man because you couldnt figure out how to hand them out.. you couldnt get people to help you and nobody really cared about it as much as you.... or DPW pissed at your moop, people pissed that you got them involved in a loony plan that didnt seem to be much of a plan...im sure youve considered some of the negative but!! really man.. it just seems a bit much... people have succesfully given out tons of stuff in the past.. thousands of light sabers for example.. but, your plan seems to be a lot different and the 'gift' is a lot different too... you wont be planning a 'light saber battle at the man' which was why they were handed out.. just..giving a thing out with nothing else attached, apparently..

id say!! best tip you could get here is to: go a lot smaller. maybe 5,000 .. maybe 3,000.

you might have got larry to wear one! you might have had lotsa people visit yer website because it was in JRS..but really man... 55,000 things to hand out to people at an event that encourages leave no trace and is in an environment where people bugger off and say 'fuck it' to any responsibilities they might have agreed to before the burn? theres a bazillion things people could be doing out there.. and i dont think youll find many people as inspired as you are to hand out one of these things to 9 out of 10 burners.......

many projects can kick ass at burning man, things that everyone thought would fail end up failing and many things that people thought would fail ended up succeeding in crazy ways... and nothing out there is easy.. but i see disaster all over this one.. ...whether it be personally for you.. or for the people who have to deal with this in terms of MOOP/logistics/blood/sweat/tears/effort/etc..

good luck!! ...dont be surprised to see lotsa people push back against this idea.. as you can see people have concerns about MOOP and rightly so.. moop is all of our concern as our event is contingent on leaving the place clean..

Image
Cory holds up the square used to measure MOOP. Each 1/10 acre site must contain less MOOP than will fit into that square.

http://blog.burningman.com/tag/moop-map-live-2011/


consider the hard workin playa restoration crew when you try to implement this beast of a project..... it wont take too many clown noses to get yerself a nickname.. and maybe a reputation! ...and getting a reputation and a nickname from the restoration crew probably isnt something ya want ;-)

again.. good luck.. think it through, listen to people... i think we all mostly mean well!! ..we want stuff to succeed and we care a lot about protecting this thing that is burning man, which we all seem to largely feel like is 'ours'

;-)
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby trilobyte » Thu Mar 15, 2012 7:46 pm

Perhaps consider planning moop sweeps along the perimeter fence? Once on Thursday should give you a sense of the moop factor (you could see a bunch, a few, or none at all), and then another at the end of the event.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Elliot » Thu Mar 15, 2012 11:22 pm

I love it! I'm going to wear one August 29 whether I'm in BRC or not!
But can we find an American manufacturer for these? I just hate buying anything from Red China.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Bob » Fri Mar 16, 2012 12:20 am

sftex wrote:...(BTW, I AM a Greeter)...


Imagine my surprise.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Ugly Dougly » Fri Mar 16, 2012 12:54 pm

For me, the root of my negative response to that, is the same that I have towards "gifting" in general: the idea that you can buy or make "things" and instantly inject yourself into the decommodified, participatory Burning Man experience.

It's like a child having parents that don't love their kids enough to spend time with them, and in their guilty feelings, bombard the child with toys.

But by all means, go ahead and do your thing. Plenty of burners do.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Roberto Dobbisano » Fri Mar 16, 2012 1:11 pm

rumor has it Santa is Not Pleased.


he finds this akin to Mormons Baptizing Holocaust victims...


the "clown problem" must be solved, once and for all...this degenerate "art" is nothing more than blatant Clownaganda and obviously upping the ante in the great Santa - Clown war to new levels.


Santa may have to blow up the bunkers where these clown noses are made BEFORE they can be used on an unsuspecting playa.

i heard Santa will not ask permission of the Bmorg before doing it, but may want to borrow some of their demo experts.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby percussivepaul » Fri Mar 16, 2012 2:20 pm

I have to say I agree with lemur. Don't be discouraged, but dial it down a bit.

I am happy for you that you've had great experiences with this project. But, 55,000 clown noses implies that everyone in the city is wearing one -- what else could it imply -- and this has moved beyond something fun and silly that people do, and instead become a mass art project that the city is participating in. I would ask you to think carefully about whether this is really a gift that you are giving to the city, or rather is it a gift that you are asking the city to give to you.

There is one camp I know of that distributes things on this scale -- pee funnel camp. Tens of thousands of them every year now. I'm sure they would agree it is a major logistical undertaking (note it is a whole camp, not just one person) and it has taken years of steady growth to get to where they are. But it's easy to see why this works -- pee funnels are something that every girl wants and needs. No doubt they were inspired to grow by the great response they got in the early years.

Clown noses are something different. It's a particular aesthetic that might work for some people and not others. I personally have nothing against them but wouldn't wear one, and I don't feel being given one would cause any kind of transcendent experience, and if you offered me one I might actually say 'no thanks' because it would wind up as MOOP. Especially if you were just standing on a corner handing them out, or something. I mean this kind of stuff: "They f*ckin squeal usually, they laugh, they giggle and CAN NEVER BELIEVE THAT SOMEONE IF GIVING THEM HAPPINESS FOR FREE." -- it must be obvious that a lot of burners are not so jaded or so innocent that a clown nose would totally transform them. There's a particular type of person that appreciates this gift and there are not 55,000 of them -- not even close. Once the point of saturation is reached the gift exchange becomes flipped, and suddenly the person with the clown nose wants it to be taken, and wants the recipient to have a great experience, and the recipient, not wanting the clown nose but noticing this desire, may choose to act graciously and accept it. This dynamic is actually common with people who give out big boxes of nearly useless trinkets -- there are lots of people that do this out there, but it can be problematic when the gifts are generic and impersonal, because it can feel like the giver is giving for the sake of giving, rather than out of kindness or friendship or spontaneity or any of the other ways which somehow feel more genuine. In such cases of mass-gifts the gifts are actually flowing the other way, from the recipients to the giver: the gift of allowing the giver to feel positive about their gifts. It should be clear this is not really how it's supposed to work.

Rather than a wider shotgun approach, why not use the clown nose as a means to forge a deeper connection with the people it does reach? There is clearly something to this project given the responses you've described. You could throw a big party for all the people who receive a clown nose so they can meet one another and maybe make friends. Alternatively or additionally, have a clown nose pub crawl one night, advertised by those clown noses you do manage to hand out in the first few days, but you bring boxes of them with you on the crawl, and freely hand them out to whoever you encounter? Then the gift is actually an invitation -- much more personal, much for fun, no expectations on either side.
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby sftex » Fri Mar 16, 2012 2:46 pm

Thanks so much for all the input....I DO have answers and this is ALL VERY CONSTRUCTIVE and exactly the type of interactive, community driven responses I expect and appreciate in our community.
I'm very busy today and will put a lot of thought into my next post...but PLEASE KEEP IT COMING!
Seriously, thank you all :)

PS, regarding all this Santa nonsense, I'm also Santa:





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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby Rice » Fri Mar 16, 2012 3:29 pm

I like the idea of offering to give something to participants in BRC. I have had the urge to do just that for the last 5 years. I always mull over my proposed gift, wondering who I should give it to, when I should give it out, but mostly why am i wanting to give that gift... So far I have not brought anything to the playa to give out. After serious thought I have always declined.

As a burner who has been offered lots of different types of gifts I find certain things run deep. Gifts for gift sake, nope. I have no attachment to a string of plastic handed to me as I am walking by. I always say "no thank you." I do wonder why the givers get upset if I say "No". If I am not going to cherish it, why would I take one???

So, I guess what I am trying to say is that not all people will want to take your gift. There are lots of reasons why, just keep smiling and look the next person you talk with in the eye and go from there. Offering something to a friend after chatting for a while probably will work better?

YMMV

Have fun, enjoy your burn!
Love Rice

Roach: "I feel like in this day and age, every girl should know how to build a flamethrower."
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Re: WhyTheNose is bringing 55,000 clown noses to the Playa!

Postby junglesmacks » Fri Mar 16, 2012 5:47 pm

PercusivePaul: That was a really.. good.. post.. and dead on IMHO.
Savannah wrote:It sounds freaky & wrong, so you need to do it.
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