Operated by John-Riley Harper. Dedicated to archiving photography from Utah's underground scenes, as well as other personal projects.

Rainbow Gathering '08.
I spent seven days at this year's rainbow gathering, which was in Wyoming this year.

The biggest question I have returning from the rainbow gathering is this: what was the impact on the mosquitoes!? I, myself, noticed a dramatic shift in the cleverness of the mosquitoes after about four days of battling. The early ones were lazy. I must have killed hundreds. Jen, sitting in one place while people were balancing rocks around her, killed one hundred and five, placing them in a morbid graveyard which was intended to warn the others. But after three days of massacre and blood exchange, they would not simply land. They would hover near, test their landing pad, and would require much attention.

Humans were driving evolution by killing the careless. The arms race had begun. If we had been able to stay I'm sure that we would be able to have conversations with them in 100 years.

The stories from spending a week with thousands of people are endless. I could write all night. There was death camp, the warriors of light, searches for people, rock balancing, wacky mysticism, my own secular preaching, nonchalant nudity, incredible and continual acts of altruism, and loud people.

Loud people. When you get so many people together you are quite certain to have a number of annoying ones. And the fact that they are prominent and vocal makes them seem to be more numerous than they are. I mean, some of the kids there were downright coarse. A 15 year old girl's voice could sound like a raspy 40 year old, screaming out constant obscenities. I couldn't believe it at first, but eventually I simply slept through the pre-dawn "good morning!'s, fighting dogs, and incoherent thundering.

It makes sense, though. I mean, what is the rainbow gathering but a collection of numerous regional outsider groups. Most of the people don't fit in, are socially awkward, and have antisocial tendencies. It's an odd mix, and some will always feel like outsiders even among a throng of thousands of others that feel the same way.

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