Bruce finds a muse

It’s Thursday night—make that Friday morning, about 3 a.m. I’m in Center Camp, in the heart of Black Rock City, and I’m here to take a breather. It’s been a wondrous night already; I’ve been taking advantage of this warm, calm evening. I take a seat on a dusty cushion, breathe deeply, and sit back, savoring, soaking and slacking. I don’t have to wait long before a person of interest appears. She’s a classic burnbabe, maybe 25 or 27, sporting a lithe figure, framed by a sparkly halter top and gypsy-esque pants. Her face is super-cute, topped with a thick headband and playatized semi-dreadlocks.

And she had a hoop. A simple hula hoop of small diameter. And what she proceeded to do with that little doodad was downright dazzling.

She walked out into the middle of the performance space, raised her arms, and twirled the hoop above her head for a few beats, getting a rhythmic feel for it. Then she let it spirally slide to her waist, expertly catching it above her hips, where she parked the hoop and began to gently pump it. Whip, whip, whip went the hoop, circling her luscious hips with a most exciting speed and authority. Very quickly, I was a fan. You go, girl!

She let the hoop drop to a latitude just above her knees and kept it there, totally in control, with the hoop easily and lazily circling with just the slightest twitches of her thighs. Fascinating. And, it must be said, kinda sexy. I mean, yeesh. She continued to sling it right there, the hoop carving sure circles while riding on her firm, dusty quads. And then, with an imperceptible flick, the hoop slid upward, perching once again above her hips. She was now ready to bring it. Bring it for real. Suddenly, that hoop was rocketing around her hips in fifth gear, and the ripping rotation she achieved was happening with a minimum of visible effort. There was no major thrusting or gyrating going on, just these subtle but perfectly efficient hip moves that had that hoop slingin’ through space with a whirlwind velocity.

She didn’t keep these hoopulations up for long, but long enough so those of us entranced onlookers could appreciate that what we were witnessing was not some jive hula hooping from the vapid ’50s, but hooping that would be at home in the ancient bazaars of Babylon or Rome, hooping that could proudly take its place with the best of fire dancers, jugglers and acrobats. Hooping that smacked of timeless celebration, a welcome part of any grand festival of The Goddess, where men and women dare to come together to laugh, leer, and emulate satyrs and nymphs.

After a few minutes, she stopped, slung her hoop over her shoulder, and walked back out into the city. Thank you lots, hoop goddess! Then, the guy with the crystal ball perfectly balanced on his shaved head stepped into the performance area …