The Brew: Burning Man Bummer and Jimmy Buffett’s Endless Summer

By Al Perrotta Published on September 4, 2023

Happy Labor Day!

Since so many folks are kicking it up today, we’ll try to keep the Brew fairly light. But first, breaking news out of Mexico.

Say Cheese! World Record Set for Biggest String Cheeseball!

Congratulations to Pijijiapan, Mexico. On Thursday, their dairy farmers broke the Guinness record for creating the world’s largest string cheese ball. Broke the record? I mean, the 80 workers involved in putting the cheese ball together shattered the record. The old record was 770 pounds. This homage to fromage came in at 1,230 pounds!

According to AFP, the string cheese ball took 1,500 gallons of milk to craft. CNN has the video:

Burning Man Festival Turns to Flooded Out Nightmare

Over 73,000 “pagan spiritualists,” as Not the Bee put it, got more than they bargained for at this year’s Burning Man Festival. Heavy rains and flash flooding struck the site in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada, stranding the crowd, with an order to shelter in place. Fun in the mud a la Woodstock? No. The clay ground can actually burn skin. Further adding to the hardship, the port-a-johns are nearly full and trucks can get in to empty them. A doctor on the scene reports “The port-a-potties are probably going to start overflowing, and that’s gonna mix with the mud and the rain, and it’s going to possibly spread infectious diseases.”

And more rain is coming in.

Tragically, one death has been reported. Though a cause of death has not been given.

The “counter-culture-event-for-people-who-now-run-the culture” Burning Man festival gets its name from the giant human totem that is set ablaze at the conclusion of the weeklong festivities.  

The pricey festival got off to a troubling start earlier in the week when climate activists blocked the solitary road into Black Rock Desert for hours. That is until, tribal rangers came along and cleared them out.

We pray for the safety of those gathered and waiting to leave.

Joe Biden Visits Hurricane-Damaged Florida, Says Schedule’s Been Too Busy to Visit East Palestine

Joe Biden went to Florida Saturday to inspect damage from Hurricane Idalia. The White House claims he was supposed to meet with Gov. Ron DeSantis, but DeSantis inexplicably bailed. Biden said Friday they’d meet, but on Saturday he said “I don’t know” what happened.. However, DeSantis’ office said there were “no plans” for the two to hook up, adding that security arrangements for such a meeting would hamper recovery efforts. The White House denies the presidential visit was going to cause problems. Miscommunication … is one or the other or both playing politics in a time of trouble?

While on the ground in the Sunshine State, Biden was asked why he hasn’t visited East Palestine, Ohio. In February, the small town was ravaged and poisoned when a train carrying toxic chemicals derailed and was deliberately set ablaze. Biden said, “Well, I haven’t had the occasion to go to East Palestine. There’s a lot going on here, and I just haven’t been able to break.”

The accident was seven months ago.

Yeah, those ice cream cones in Rehoboth aren’t going to eat themselves.

Summer Never Ends … As Long as You Can Sing a Jimmy Buffett Song

The final weekend of summer began with news of the passing of singer-entrepreneur Jimmy Buffett at the age of 76. Tom Sileo shared the story on The Stream.

It seems fitting Buffett would pass as we say goodbye to summer. Buffett created a music world — and business empire — around the idea a “perfect endless summer,” as AP put it. Open water, Caribbean breezes, and good times with friends and strangers. Like Springsteen with the Jersey Shore, God may have created the Florida Keys, but Buffett put ‘em on the cultural map.  

Pick up a Jimmy Buffett songbook sometime and the first thing you notice is he generally kept to simple chords. He wrote songs to sing along to. And sing along millions of fans did, at concerts … and in the car, at bars and at karaoke.

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Even you’re if not a “Parrothead” – the name given the devoted legion of Buffett fans – his Caribbean-soaked songs just seem to make things brighter. Even Saturday, after hearing the news, I turned on the Sirius XM channel dedicated to Buffett, Radio Margaritaville. Usually after a popular musician dies, listening to his music is a downer at first. Yet, as Buffett tunes rolled in one after another like soft waves, I couldn’t help but form a smile, even as a tear was in my eye.

Good luck finding a secular artist (this side of Motown) whose music just makes the day seem fair and sunny regardless of the storm. What a legacy to leave behind: Helping make the day sunny and fair, and the course true, for those in your reach.

As long as we have Jimmy Buffett music, we will always have summer. Our prayers go out to his family, and Parrotheads around the world.

As his beloved Florida recovers from Hurricane Idalia, what a fitting way to say farewell. With a performance of a song he wrote after Katrina, at a more recent hurricane benefit show … with someone and the crowd singing along. “Breathe In, Breathe Out, Move On.”

Along The Stream

We’ve got a really cool “Sunny Side of The Stream” for you.” New York Man Says He Can’t Stop Smiling, Asks ‘Who Am I?’ That God Chose Him.” Stream publisher James Robison says, “This awesome GOD-filled broken man revealed more Jesus and the true Father God than 90% of the preachers and church folk sadly ever do. That’s the God and Joy Jesus came to reveal to a world in darkness and defeat.”

Also, John Zmirak catches the latest on Maui with Jason Jones:  SEE “On Biden’s Watch, Two of the Greatest Catastrophes in U.S. History: Afghanistan and Maui.”


Al Perrotta is the Managing Editor of The Stream, chief barista for The Brew and co-author, with John Zmirak, of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Immigration. You can follow him at @StreamingAl at GETTRGabParler, and now at TRUTH Social.

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