Contain yourselves

We are now living in times of pandemic. Some of us are scared. Some of us think that all this is just another conspiracy. And some of us secretly hope for the “zombie apocalypse” to come true. And all of those scenarios are cool. They all serve their innate purpose – provide us with solace and give us a purpose for justifying our existence.

But sadly, there is one more deeply disturbing scenario. Scenario that has far-reaching and just as deadly endgame as the “zombie apocalypse”, “virus wars” or possibly even the new rise of Cthulhu. And unlike all the previous scenarios, this particular trend is revolving around an ancient human weakness – stupidity.

Stupidity is the most powerful force on earth. It can cause damage and ignite havoc without any prerequisite “elemental forces” or special “powers”. All stupidity needs to exist is possession of the human carrier who is happy to be the host for the parasitic creature. Sadly, when ancient Greek thinkers where hoping for relentlessness and relying upon human condition, they still foresaw in the depths of their minds, that this ancient evil will hardly ever be conquered.

We possess the innate will and autonomy over our minds, but none of them will save us in case of losing the battle to the forces of laziness and stupidity. We are disposed towards being better than “animals”, but during these trying times, more and more humans have proven, that unlike animals, they will not be tamed or contained. Not even in the face of a deadly viral pandemic.

We still go shopping, especially when there are sales ongoing. We run marathons and gather for the pub crawls. We take our kids to the park and let them run amok in the wild. All for the sake of our sanity as parents or well-being as human beings. But what will we do when it comes for us?

We are living in trying times. We are living in somewhat desperate times. But are we really living in the “reign of stupidity” times? I hope it is not the case. I do not know why, but I still believe that we can be better. That we are better! Contain yourselves my fellow human beings. I know it is hard. I know it is painful. But I also know that it is of utmost importance that we keep ourselves safe from our own ignorance and outright stupidity. Not just for the sake of others. For our own sake!

Sales will be there when pandemic ends. Once it is safe again, run out in to the world and enjoy it! Let your kids loose. Take your loved ones for a stroll oug on a town. Go for a walk with the one that makes you smile despite the rummaging heartbeat within. Show the unity of strength and mind.

But in order to do all of that, you need to do just one immensely important thing. Contain yourselves! Stay the fuck home! Show the stupidity who is the boss. Do not let down those who believed in us back when the gods treated earth like a violence infested and dirty playground. Because if you can not do that, then we are all sentenced to death. If not from sickness or disease, then certainly from the overflow of stupidity  that will eventually suffocate the life out of this human race.

On Personal Autonomy

Recently there have been a lot of discussion pertaining to what is acceptable and what is not acceptable when it comes to the human interaction. Main theme of this discussion has for somewhat “obvious” reasons centered around men mistreating women by their words or deeds. But awkwardly enough, only on rare occasions has the discussion shifted to the opposite side of the court – women mistreating men by their words and/or deeds.

I have spent the better part of my life on the door and it makes me said when I think about all the vile and disgusting incidents of unwanted human contact. Handling different situations and being privy to violence is a “dark” yet inseparable part of the nightlife. When it comes to men they mostly get rowdy and aggressive, but only on rare occasions do they allow themselves to become grabby. It has, in my mind, a lot to do with the fear of “fag” stigmata or at least the inner fear of being misunderstood in a way that will damage your social role and position in the eyes of your peers.

Unfortunately, my worst experiences are with women, who encouraged by the alcohol flooding their bloodstream, become the worst kind of humans – grabby and foul-mouthed barbarians, treating everything in their sight from the minuscule position of their still functioning lizard-brain. it is not the violent outbursts that scare me. It’s the constant need to be on your toes, ready to react to each and every unwanted act of “attention”, which they consider to be funny or at least “wanted” by the object of their drunken desire due to the fact that folk wisdom has spoken of the man as a walking genitalia, that wants what it wants, when it wants and wherever it wants.

When denied their wish, those prime examples of evolutionary decline revert to insults and violent outbursts in order to convey their utmost dismay towards their target. They can’t comprehend that there might ever be a scenario, where their advancements will not be met with in kind approval or at least a lukewarm smile and a wink “that a girl!” Lizard is awake, Lizzie is asleep!

From a personal point of view – I have accepted a long time ago, that I occupy the spot in the “ugly” category of the society. And over the years I have come to be content with my place. But it still doesn’t mean that I welcome unwanted attention. I too don’t much appreciate being grabbed by the genitals or have my head or other parts of the face and body touched without my express approval. Just like unwanted physical contact, i also find it repulsive when someone is trying to expose themselves to me in order to “convince” me to go with the flow or rubbing themselves against me in order to provoke my “inner lust”.

My body is my property. Let me decide what I want or do not want to happen to it. I acknowledge the sad fact, that statistics are on the female side. But it really doesn’t mean, that only males are to blame. Ladies! We can be harassed just as easily as you. So if you want to fight the problem, don’t expel us from being part of the solution merely by stigmatizing us as being inherently part of the problem.

Overwhelming Desire to Belittle

Night is always profound. Just as the inner workings of human mind. Or so one might hope. But unfortunately it is not always the truth.

Over the years I have constantly found myself in quiet (or sometimes not so quiet) contemplation over an issue that strikes as peculiarly odd. I have yet to grasp the inner workings of the mind of those members of society, who find profound joy and inexplicable pleasure in belittling others based on their chosen profession.

As a bouncer I have no problem with understanding the ups and downs of my chosen vocation. To be blunt it is rather hard to find any “bright sides” in the profession that has grown out of need to establish physical barriers between those who are in danger of falling prey to violent moods of their surroundings and those eager to express themselves by unleashing their inner demons upon the world and those around them. But every now and then there are some dim rays of bright moonlight shining through the dark clouds.

I personally have found a mere “thank you!” from someone whose peace and well-being you have guarded over the course of their stay in the establishment under your purview the highest praise you can get. I can’t really explain it, but every time somebody thanks me for a job well done I feel like my mind has turned a clean slate and all the ugliness that preceded that moment has vanished from my thoughts. “But dread not!” I say to myself – it will return most ricky-tick! Just wait until the next shift and hope that someone is there to turn the page of that “dark notebook” you call your “mind”.

And as surely as sun sets to make room for the moon, every night there are those who find their purpose in belittling those who are in their mind “subspecies”. I personally find it to be both funny and frustrating. Humourous bit of the situation is usually in a fact that those “superhumans” rarely have anything remotely original or witty in their “vocabulary of oral ejaculation”. Mostly they get their kicks out of pointing out the obvious – they are there to let loose, you are there to pick up the pieces. Blah, blah, blah …

Every now and the you might stumble upon the “jewel” among the turds and meet some progressive wankers who point out their educational background, wealth of their mommies and daddies or price tags on their close as basis for their “regal” treatment. But even those “special circumstances” are usually expressed in dull form and without an ounce of self-belief. And let’s be frank – if you are not buying your own bullshit, why should others give a toss? So do not despair, they don’t and they hardly ever will.

So to all you “special people” out there. Go ahead! Give it you best shot. If it makes you feel better or somehow more important – have a go! But keep in mind that every chalice has its measure. So whenever you are contemplating whether or not to show your lack of human decency by diminishing someone job or vocation, do keep in mind that might be the day when the chalice runs over. And if that should be the case don’t be shocked if your feet get soaked.

Suffocating Silence

Many think that night is too quiet. Too desolate for your own good. It grabs you by the throat and squeezes until you either go bonkers or yell your lungs out so as to not surrender to the suffocating silence of the realm of darkness.

But me personally, I rather enjoy the silence of the night. Even if from time to time it does become a bit suffocating. It gives me the ability to reassess my perspective. To dig deep into the darkest parts of my mind and face the demons lying in wait down there in the cthulhuesque darkness.

These thoughts are almost never pretty. But none the less they are there and it is necessary to engage with them. If for no better reason, then for the sake of sanity of your own mind. Even if you are afraid to admit it; you are well aware that even the brightest of minds holds darkness down below.

It’s that darkness that drives the mind towards the light. Or more precisely, it’s the inner struggle between the two that motivates many of us not to jump of the deep end and dive head first into the abyss. We want the light to win, but not all of us succeed in that battle.

When darkness does take over, the night is the best time for it to happen. Solitude is far better travel companion than overcrowded streets of the city during daytime. Darkness gives us room to re-engage with the inner demons and hopefully get them back into the bottom of the pit.

If however we should not succeed, we must be prepared for the consequences. Whatever they may be or whomever they engulf. An inner battle lost is another stretch of darkness taking over.

Darkness as Shelter from Sight

There are those among us, who rely upon darkness as refuge. Commonly they are considered to be among those not desired by the society. Sometimes it is so due to their inclination towards unlawful or vile. But sometimes it’s because society would prefer to not notice them in order to avoid the unpleasant contemplations about whether or not one or the other individual is worthy of our attention and support.

Not everyone, who seek refuge in the night, are criminals on deviants. Truth be told, there is a fair share of them as well, but they are not in the centerfold of this particular line of thought. There are those of us, who seeks shelter in the darkness, because they fall into the realm of what China Miéville in his novel “The City & the City ” calls “unseeing” – come daylight, majority of the society will go out of their way to not notice them, because even though it’s not illegal (as opposed to the plot of the previously mentioned crime noir novel), it is uncomfortable for many due to the attached expectations from certain groups, that whenever noticing the particular groups of undesired social elements one is expected to show some degree of compassion and charity.

For these “undesired” groups (homeless and poor mostly), darkness of the night becomes a gateway to escape the vicious glances of society and find some hoped for peace and shelter. They know they are unwanted. And they know that they have played a part in their own demise. What they do not understand is the viciousness of the crowds and what have they done to deserve it.

In this sense they are a lot like children. They desire one thing and one thing only. To belong and not be cast away. And just like many children, they end up with the short straw in their hands, knowing that nobody out there cares for them. And that is the feeling that is cloaked in darkness every time the night comes.

Night brings peace and shelter. It brings a prospect of short yet restful sleep. Sleep that is more often than not filled with dreams full of hope and happiness. If you can not experience it in the real world, you might as well experience it in the shadows of the night while floating on the waves of your dream world.

Night makes them happy. It hides them from venom of the world and gives them long-awaited solitude to go about their own way. They do not have to be alert every second. They can relax for a bit. Take the load off. But deep down in the lizard-brain the fear and anxiety are still there. Ready to leap out as rapidly as lightning and strike at every enemy in sight.

Unlike society engaged in “unseeing”, darkness is neutral. It simply exists. And it’s up for grabs, as they say, by anyone or anything that feels like melting into it. Darkness doesn’t judge. On the contrary – it exhilarates and encourages to explore, examine and engage. It gives those without any hope a glimpse of light at the end of a not so long tunnel.

Darkness has gotten more than enough people of the lege at the critical moment. Way more than people themselves have managed. Darkness inspires, but not in a burdensome way. Darkness grants leeway when society and others don’t.

So don’t be afraid of the darkness. Don’t shy away from the night. Whenever you wish to vanish, they will gladly get you out of sight.

Darkness and the Solitude

Darkness grips me every time it arrives. It grips me from the inside more than it engulfs me from the outside. I learned to deal with darkness very long time ago. Back when it was trying to find itself a permanent place within my bodily frame. I am still not quite sure if I have gotten rid of it for good. That’s why I always fear the deep grip of the moonless night.

Darkness is my solitude as much as it is my battleground. Its solitude provides me with an arena in which I can unleash my inner demons while keeping them locked within the battleground of my mind. I have no fear of the abyss, for I have locked my eyes with it and yet somehow managed to keep hold of the edge of the precipice. Its cold smile will forever stay with me as a reminder of the dangers hidden within the reckless handling of ones inner demons.

Darkness also grants me solitude of thought. Whether it’s an empty apartment that serves as a habitat for a wretched soulless body of an old and tired nighthound or a dimly lit city street that provides a footing for a nighthounds watch, both of them are equally suitable stages for the dark yet gripping onslaught of inner demonic battle.

Solitude of thought has always been my escape. Ever since I learned that majority of the humankind views me as an anomaly, a glitch in the system, inelegant sequence of code holding the time-space continuum of this place we call “the world” more or less together as a contextual background for further advancement of variety of means and methods of self-destruction, procrastination and Bacchanalia.

And what a longed for escape it has been. Welcome darkness my old friend. I can be whatever I want to be. Feel whatever there is left to feel. And if I’m lucky – delve into the deepest, darkest corners of my mind without the fear of being constantly interrupted by onslaught of surrounding others or being betrayed by the grim grin indicating the full heat of the inner demonic battle.

Darkness is my “safe haven” amidst the muddy waves of mundane existence. It gives me shelter I need to indulge my inner battleground with the fierce standoff between my inner darkness and the abyss that desires to embrace me as a whole. A battle each and every one of us has, but not many are comfortable to admit. No worries, more room for me.

That’s why come darkness, I feel the surge of energy that drives my senses mad and leaves my heart pounding. I feel relief when I win and terror whenever I come to the point where I feel that there is no more strength left in me to hold on to the edge of precipice and it might well be that the time has come for the abyss to embrace my soulless form.

Somehow it has as of yet never come to that. But who nows what the future battles darkness has in sight. It very well may be, that what is written here as a warning, may one day soon become the heading on my tombstone …

The Abyss of Reasoning

Progress of time has brought with it the progress of human need for explanations. And don’t get me wrong – I am not saying that this is necessarily a bad thing. But in the context of night-time economy, one ought to admit the limits upon the possibilities of meeting such a need as thoroughly as each and every individual might expect his or her needs to be met at particular time and space interaction.

Words have held power ever since they were created. Before them there were monosyllables and utterances, that had their place within the timeframe of that particular stage of human development they found convenient to attach themselves to. Though even today we are still in need of reliance upon assistance delivered by various forms of visualisation accessible to us as species.

The night is no exception. It sets its own terms and limits upon what is there to be said altogether as opposed to what might be within the realm of expectations adhered to by different participants of nightlife. As it sadly turns out, there is usually more left unsaid. And that is the curiosity of the realm – one needs to balance the timeframe allocated for communication with the adjacent needs of the venture in progress.

To put it more bluntly, nighthounds are not very keen on talking. That of course does not mean that they have nothing to say (though truth be told, most of the time one ought to be grateful that they are not saying anything. Words can hurt you know …)

Generally it has to do with the fact that there is not much to say about specific event or venue. But it has also something to do with the fact that keeping mum helps you to avoid being dragged into a prolonged discussion which from its inception is on a highway to nowhere. Because contrary to popular opinion, “highway to hell” is by invitation only!

An old bouncer proverb tells us that “ask no questions hear no lies!” And oh how true that proverb is. More times than I can count have been spent on aimlessly rotating hot air in my mouth. You just switch on your “asked-n-answered” filter and keep on going with the same argument over and over again. It’s a bit like a first date – clumsy yet full of effort.

The hardest part in these prolonged “dances of syllables” is to stop yourself from falling once you have gotten dangerously close to the abyss of “endlessness”. What you have to figure out is, how to stop the interaction as politely as possible without giving the opponent any descent way of re-engaging with you in a new discussion that unfortunately will still follow the same hopeless track.

Ideally of course, one would not have to worry about the abyss. It should be avoided by providing diligent and coherent answers to the main questions. Alas! Life is far from ideal and therefore every nighthound knows that it doesn’t really matter, whether or not you answer all the questions. What matters is the inherent understanding of the opponent that at one point this discussion will come to an end notwithstanding whether the opponent is pleased with the outcome or not.

For if one lets the discussion out of hand, one most certainly will end up in the abyss as deep as the darkest hole of the universe. And ain’t no sunshine when your gone!

Darkness and the Moon

I have always felt more at home in the dark. I guess it’s because I can worry less about my appearance and the effect it has on people around me, when I can have at least a slim hope of being less visible. Even though deep in the shades of my mind I am fully aware that darkness brings out the edges even more than the light does.

It is especially true at those nights, where full moon is bright ablaze in the night sky. Unlike the sun, moon calms me down. Makes me feel welcome. Dissolves my inner fears and smooths my outer roughness. Moon is my friend, whereas sun is an inconvenient companion. If it where up to me, I would spend all of my existence in the moonlight.

But there is also a certain charm to be the fact of being inconvenienced by the sunlight. It makes one question his inner self. What secrets does he hide beneath the grotesque surface of his outer self? It might be nothing. Just a simplicity of an uneven shapes of ones dreams.

But it can also be a whole load of something. Something sinister and cunning. Something as Kafkaesque as a wounded animal in search for its last stand-off. Or a wounded sellsword in search for a last payout, that would set him up for a time being and provide the oh so desired window of opportunity aimed at the physical recovery. For he knows that his soul is shattered and there ain’t no spell or potion out there in the whole wide world that could ever put those pieces back together again.

Darkness for me is the same as the shell is for a tortoise. It’s a wall. Its a shield. Its a sanctuary.

It’s a place where I can feel whole again. Even if just for a short timeframe. It’s still better than nothing at all. Its still more of a healing than a curse. And it’s for damn sure way better therapy than imagining the world ablaze ever will be.

Darkness and the moon are the sombre companions of every nighthound. Even if we don’t howl at it out loud, we still damn sure houl at it within. It’s this inner howling that sets us free. Gives us meaning and purpose. Makes as feel alive again.

It’s like a drug. You can never escape its grip. Best you can achieve is a loosened leash. But you are still shackled by it nonetheless. And these shackles are so hard to break free from. Not physically, mentally it is. One can go on for ever persuading oneself that he has freed himself from the shackles of the night. Bust as soon as the full moon is high up in the sky, the inner beast inside of you is full awake and adamant to have his spot in the moonlight howling bonanza.

So be aware and be prepared. That’s how the saying goes anyways. And it is easier said than done. No matter the effort, moon will do its utmost best to break even the strongest member of the pack. It is its challenge to you. And its gift to the night.

When time stands still

Sometimes time just stands still. Even though your brain realises that actually it is not the case, you still somehow feel that it is not moving in its usual pace. Something out of the ordinary overwhelms you. You can feel the gripping tension of certain hopelessness. Hopelessness that makes you feel inclined to produce some kind of counter reaction to your surroundings in order to feel that time is actually moving.

Usually time stands still when there is no one around. When it’s just you and the surrounding night. One might think that it’s a good thing. Having the night to yourself. Just you and your thoughts. What could be more appropriate. No one interfering in your world. No one smashing into your existence. Just pure and soothing silence provided by the night that wraps you in its dark garments.

As soothing as it might be, it does not help with the fact that sooner rather than later someone is going to shatter this solitude. And then you will have to snap back to reality and react. Downside of the matter is, that between shattering interference and reaction you are expected to carry out, there is always minute but yet still perceptible stillness. That time-space continuum that looks like a gap in the well rehearsed sequence of actions. You might think that no one saw it. They couldn’t have. That it was oh so brief.

But alas, someone always does. And even though most of the time situations like these do not involve any harmful side effects, it only takes one to cause damage to the future sequences.

That one time where you weren’t fast enough might make all the difference. It shatters your self belief. Even if only for a little while. It makes you doubt everything you know. It begs the question of whether or not you should carry on.

Getting back in the saddle after that one time is difficult enough. But it is even more difficult to convince oneself that that was all it was – just one unfortunate mishap that will more than likely never happen again. And it might not. But the fear of it lurks in the back of your head like a deadly shadow. It is even worse than the mishap itself because it breeds doubt and insecurity. It keeps you on the verge of the dark side. It allows the doubt to take over. It becomes the master of you instead of you becoming the master of it.

Realising the danger of time is important. This realisation helps you to at least attempt to prevent the inevitable. It is inevitable because it is bound to happen to the best of us. It is inevitable because time is older than the world and therefore has more experience with taking over the world than the world has experience with taking over the time.

But nonetheless it ought not deter one from attempting to do ones best. Time will always find a way to stand still. It is ones task to figure out the way to prevent most of its attempts to stand still. Without these attempts, there is no way to survive the night.

Can you make an exception?

I have been asked by many how come bouncers are so stubborn? Why be so rigid and stiff towards those who don’t feel like following all the rules. Well, my answer is always the same – for every exception one would make, ten more would crop up like magic mushrooms after Chernobyl.

Bouncer game is as old as the world itself. There have always been those tasked with enforcing the rules to even the playing field. Even if just for show. As long as there have been some kind of standards for addressing human behaviour, there have been those tasked with upholding them.

Same goes for the door. In order for the ground control team to do their job properly, it is the absolute must that the ones on the door do not deviate from the rulebook. (Even if it is almost nonexistent). For every standard set, there ought to be a reason, which in turn leads to a reasonable explanation for the execution of the rule. If one tasked with upholding the rules lets his guard down, pretty soon the existence of the rules will become meaningless at best.

You don not make exception unless there is a rule that allows you to do so. And nine times out of ten this rule does not exist precisely because it undermines the ability of the functional application of the rules as a framework. Say you make an exception to one, and some time later another person comes, but this time with slightly different reasoning for the necessity of the exception. How thin would you stretch the canvas before tearing it to shreds?

If we use legal system as an analogy, there are good reasons why for example in the so-called “civil law system” rule of analogy is applied cautiously if at all. How do you balance the scales, so that neither rules nor exceptions would not outweight one another? Unfortunately there is no good solution, because every case is “a thing in its own right”. Therefore, when we have to choose between two evils, rigidity seems lesser of the two.

Otherwise nightlife would become something akin to walking on the edge of the nietzscheesque abyss, but without the catcher hiding in the rye for cases of near-fall experience. Night is tough, and night is ruthless. Therefore only possibility to survive it is to be equally rigid and scrupulous.

 

Of Nighthounds and Knowledge

During the years that I have spent on the door, I have discovered an interesting paradox. (Or at least I think it is a paradox. But I am merely a bouncer and not a philosopher). People tend to presuppose that everyone who have chosen the path of a “nighthound” have done so because they are educationally inferior to those, who have gone on to choose other paths. The reason I treat it as a “paradox” is because my personal journey has led me to meet a myriad of men and women who either still are or at some period of life have been among the countless “nighthounds” keeping the nights creatures at bay. One thing they all have in common is that all of them have an excellent knowledge of some particular field which though not necessarily developed over the years of academic endeavours can none the less be compared by its magnitude to the one obtained by those considered “experts” in their field. But the devil as they say is in the details.

Most mundane and banal approach taken by those aching to show their superiority over a “nighthound” is expressed by simple references to academic or professional achievements obtained in comparison to just “jerking around” on the door. Now that is one misguided, lousy (and lazy) and methodologically inaccurate way of showing off. First of all, mere compilation of a “best of” list of your achievements will only serve one purpose. Your personal mental (hopefully not physical) satisfaction. Person to whom you list all of your “achievements” will rarely even bother to pay any attention to the list provided for the misguided attempt to establish superiority. I mean lets face it. If you approach the issue from the viewpoint that “nighthounds” are basically morons with a minuscule mind, then what good will it do to list to them professions and expertise that is a priori beyond their mental capacity. One may have more fun spending that same amount of time on talking to a pet. Besides, wouldn’t it be more “mentally superior” to demonstrate ones excellence by not wasting time on pointless endeavours. But then again. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Second, by merely listing your achievements you are not providing any proof of actually learning anything while getting all of those fancy knickknacks. Making lists is easy. Proving that you actually belong among those chosen to be on this or that list is a different story.

An upgrade from previous installment of “academic avenger” is a pointed suggestion to do something more meaningful with one’s life than to “stand on the door”. Why should you waste away in cold and wet darkness, when you can be pursuing an “angelic light” of education in a prospering academic environment instead of subjecting oneself to the horrors of the night. Now, given that you have previously established that a person whom you are addressing has actually never been to (or is as of yet not enrolled in) college, your encouraging suggestion still bears no meaning without explanatory note on how this change of scenery would affect ones life (both knowledge and monetary wise). It is all good and dandy to simply say that college is an “enlightening experience”, but if you do not substantiate your own claims, it is hard to take you seriously. Even for someone as “dumb” as a “nighthound”. It gets exponentially worse with those who have been (or at the moment of your suggestion are enrolled in) college. They might have completely different point of view (or are as of yet in the middle of developing one). Then you have ended up with potentially opening up a floor for discussion, but since you did so from a demeaning point of view, I do not encourage you to have high hopes about potentially positive outcomes of that particular discussion. After all, once you disrespect someone you are a fair game to be dissed back.

And last but not the least are those, who are unable to comprehend that there are different forms of knowledge, just as there are different ways of accumulating that same knowledge. For a “nighthound”, knowledge is accumulation of facts and their practical applications. Ever since the world has had more or less unified understanding about the benefits of mandatory schooling, we can safely assume (except if we have a good reason not to do so), that every “nighthound” has had at least minimal yet beneficial contact with an educational system. Therefore they are not a tabula rasa. They have knowledge hidden within them. It just takes time to engage, find and assess it. Besides, I have personally witnessed demolition of “academic avengers” by the “nighthounds” in situations where those engaging with an argument of academic superiority have blatantly disregarded a very real possibility of lacking sufficient practical experience in the field they are academically pursuing. Yes it might be the case that the person in front of you has not read all the textbooks and not attended all the academic colloquia you have, but has merely practiced and honed the skills you have as of yet to put into practice. Your argument will shatter under the sheer amount of practical experience. It is a delightful site when misguided academic jargon gets split open by savvy expertise.

I am not saying that there does not exist differences between ways and methods of accumulation of knowledge. What I am saying is that mere assumption of superiority does not provide real superiority. Before embarking on the road of “rubbing it in their faces” make sure you are well equipped and heartily stocked for the battles that will inevitably ensue on this path of war. Because if you are not, your defeat will not be glorious, it will be meager and blithe.

Tit for tat

It is some times amusing to witness the shock and awe reflexes on the faces of people who have forgotten the basic rule of any kind of interaction – tit for tat. One of the main reasons for forgetfulness is enshrined in the idea of individual worth superseding the worth of others. People tend to forget, that those who work in the night industry are “people” too. Therefore it is feasible to assume, that if you mistreat them, they will retaliate in kind.

Mainly it is all bout human interaction and forms of communication. If you arrive at the door with kind intentions and polite speech, you will more often than not treated likewise. Of course we have to take into consideration the human factor on both sides of the barrier. Individuality is what keeps human kind going. Because if the Orwellian dreams would have come true, we would all be marching in tune with the same drummer and “human” communication would lose most of its meaningfulness.

Therefore it is always feasible to think about doormen as equals not treat them as inferior beings. Although being able to control ones emotions is a crucial part of the job description for anyone involved in the nightlife economy, it goes to show, that if you mistreat someone, you ought not have high hopes about not being mistreated in return. Because if you think about it, and leave out the fact of you being the almighty “customer” and the other party having a role to play in the general outcome of the “service” you expect to receive, you will hopefully end up by concluding that indeed, if you treat another person as a nobody or even worse, that persons motivation to treat you kindly will be next to nil.

On the other hand, if you receive an impolite treatment yourself, you are entitled to retaliate in kind, but then the question becomes, what would be the most suitable channel for communicating your anger and displeasure. One of the options would most certainly contain letting loose the flood of emotionally laden sentences that will end up in one of two ways – you will either face a standstill or reach an escalation that will undisputedly lead to a physical altercation. Therefore one might suggest the use of polite conversation and verbal engagement as a more feasible tactic for attempted solution of the problem rather than heated verbal confrontation. But at the end of the day, the choice is always with the ones involved in the interactive process rather than the ones analyzing it after the fact.

I personally have found it largely amusing, that majority of those who are faced with the rejection from the premises or not being allowed into the premises to begin with, find their “release” in verbal abuse. And it is very rarely of a “witty” character. Mostly it is constrained to either an array of references to genitalia (both human and non-human) or personal insults (mostly engaging with the personal or family life of the subject of the abuse). Wittiness comes into play when one uses language metaphors to mask the banality of ones insults or convey the insulting message via language that would not, at the first place, come across as insulting.

In the first instance, references are usually highly juvenile in character and pertain mostly to psychosexual fantasies of the abuser. The words used are usually indicative of either a wish to engage in certain sordid sexual acts with the victim of the abuse or directed towards denigrating the victim of abuse via comparisons to either genitalia as such or different forms of diseases that might affect ones genitalia. They are also expressed via childish behaviour accompanying the insults. What makes them amusing, although hurtful in kind, is the fact that I usually catch myself thinking “how old is this person?” Of course, age is merely a sidetrack in these situation. It is more about emotional growth than it is about physical advancement.

In the second instance, abusers tend to shift the blame on the personal capacities or family members of the victim of the abuse, and therefore are inadvertently provoking a more vehement response from their victim. Working the door is a choice that one makes individually. Therefore one accepts the potential outcomes of ones decisions. Whether they are positive or negative are of no consequence for present discussion. If you are unhappy with the decision, address your complaints, emotional or physical, to the one who made the decision. Do not engage with third parties – they have nothing to do with the decisions made towards you, therefore they are not eligible to share the blame you are dispensing. I personally find it very upsetting and mentally undermining, when as a result of a decision that I alone have made, third parties (especially my family) are dragged into the barrage of insults that ought to be directed solely towards me. Third parties are not there to defend themselves. Neither should they, since they where not there to make the decision at the first place. So why drag them into this?!

Physical human interaction can be conducted between those individuals who are actually present at the time when interaction begins. If someone is who is not present is involved in the process, it stands to reason, that as an absent party he or she needs an advocate. Therefore, whomever engages in the blaming of an absent third-party conveys upon the opponent a tedious task of not only trying to figure out what that third party would think of the abuse but also of what would be their reaction to such an action directed towards them. But more importantly, it begs the question of the underlying purpose for the involvement of the third party to begin with. What is the abuser gaining from the involvement? Usually nothing more than an extra target for the abuse.

Retaliation can not happen without an underlying purpose. Therefore it is feasible to suggest that whenever engaging in an interaction with those involved in the nighttime economy, position yourself as a nonconfrontational entity. That will not only eliminate a potential reasons for retaliation but will also provide a fruitful ground for a constructive discussion.

The House Rules

As long as I have been on the door, I have always struggled with the inability of people to understand the importance, and hence respect, the house rules. Notwithstanding the changes in social reality, which have led some to believe, that rules are merely there to create unnecessary obstacles that can be overcome by mere denial of their existence masked by claims of “self-expression” and “artistic voyage”, from the point of view of a bouncer, these changes ain’t worth shit!

Nighthounds are the embodiments of rules. We serve at the pleasure of a code enacted by the master of the house. And its is only he who can change or dispel them. None else is acknowledged as a superior. And therefore, as embodiments of rules, we have an obligation to ensure and enforce them. By any and all means necessary.

From a point of view of a visitor, I can see the problem they construe. It is truly a challenge to live up to the standards of different houses. Sheer variety of them will make your head spin around as if being sucked into the eye of a hurricane. But alas, life is never easy. But if one obeys the rules, it can be fair. Acknowledging the existence of the rules and familiarizing oneself with their exact wording and mode of application, one can easily make some simple determinations as towards the outcome of ones behaviour.

Content of the rules might serve as an indicator for whether or not one wishes to enter the house at the first place. If certain parts and parcels of the rules seem unpleasant or even unacceptable, one should abstain from demanding entry, since it will only leed to collisions with members of the household. Therefore one ought to be able to determine, that his behaviour will be viewed unacceptable by the residents and therefore will not be tolerated. And more so punished.

If one indeed choose to enter the house, actually doing so already becomes an acknowledgment of the fact that one, if only tacitly, accepts the house rules and therefore subjugate oneself to their jurisdiction. Therefore, any further quarrels about whether or not one has actually explicitly agreed to be bound by the house rules become tantamount to acknowledgment of ones own recklessness and forfeited option of familiarizing oneself with the rules in the first place. Life is (mostly) all about choices one makes. Individuality is a heavy burden to carry. But still it is placed upon us, sometimes erroneously so, and only we ourselves can limit or expand it in regards the individuality of others and the rules governing the situation at hand. So if we choose to forfeit our option to ask about the rules, notwithstanding the reason behind this choice, we can not rely upon the idea of becoming an “exception to the rule”. You can not become an exception unless granted such a status by the master of the house. It is not a choice one can make without outside determination.

Especially unworthy are those who choose to continue to ignore the rules after existence of rules has been pointed out and their attention has been guided towards the possibility of becoming more aware of their substance by taking time to read them. There is a reason behind the emergence of the term “bouncer” – if you act in ways unwelcome you surely will be bounced out of the house. And against your own will if need be. Therefore do not put yourself in a situation, where you might face the harsh reality of becoming the object of the nighthounds wrath. Let the sleeping dogs lie.

Nighthounds only bite if you give them a reason to attack. Therefore, if they urge you to act in a certain way or on the contrary, discourage you from acting in a certain way, you would be wise to pay attention. Nighthounds do as they have been commanded. No more, no less. It would be wise for one to remember this, whenever embarking on ones journeys.

Fight before Feud

It’s always words that hurt the most. But not all words hurt equally. Some of them merely sting for a bit. Others hurt for a considerable time. And very few words are able to stay with you for life.

That is why I prefer physical conflict instead of a heated feud. Physical pain will eventually either pass or stop. Either due to the seizing of the bodily functions or because you overcome your pain. You will either lick your wounds and come back stronger; or you will have to take your place “six feet under” and hope, that instead of your ugly mug they will have enough common decency to put a nice engraving on your tombstone (or maybe even a quote …) And hopefully it will be something more original than “death becomes him!”

When getting into a fight, you always have to accept three things (because if you don’t, you have already lost):

There will be pain – pain is good. Pain is your friend. Because as soon as you feel no pain, you can be fairly certain that the end is near (if not there already!)

Fight is the battle of “will” – the one who is willing to “tough it out” no matter what the consequences is the one who enters the battle with an “upper hand”. Body is nothing without mind. Fitness is nothing without decisiveness. First and foremost, one ought to be mentally prepared for what is going to follow. Only then will one be able to use ones mind to guide ones fitness.

Only one will emerge victorious – on the streets there are no points and no referees. There are winners and losers. There are those who get hurt. And there are those who bring on the pain.

Fights are always finite by their nature. At some point they all come to a certain end. And that is the beauty of them. They provide a final solution to a problem at hand. They do not drag it out. They give tangible results and therefore make it possible to come to a decisive conclusion about the end result of an issue at hand.

Some body wins. Somebody looses, That is the gist of it. Sometimes the win is glorious. Sometimes it is not so glorious. Fights can be honourable or not. But there is always an end results. Even to a not so honourable fight.

But words are not fights. Words leat to disputes. Disputes lead to controversy. Controversy leads to more words. And before you know it, you find yourself in an endless cycle of useless waste of words which will lead nowhere near the finite end to the issue at hand.

More heated the exchange, the more you wish for it to turn into a fight. Then you can at least stop pulling punches and bring on some real pain. Because the nastiest thing about any quarrel that rises to the level of a feud, is in the waiting for a possibility to physically engage your opponent.

Unlike raw use of brutal force, feuds tend to take longer to escalate. Underneath the words, there are tensions ready to escalate. But without that escalation, heated exchange of words leads to prolonged (and painful) suffering on both sides of the disagreement.

Sadly, feuds tend to bring about not only pain but also a certain gain. It takes some adjusting, but over the course of time, one can become more resilient and therefore resistant to the pain words cause. It is not that the pain goes away. Its more like it fades into background. It becomes part of ones being. An inner armour, less susceptible to being penetrated; rather getting dents and scratches all over it. It does not stop the bleeding completely, but at least it minimizes it.

When presented with a choice, I will always take a fight over a feud. But it is not always a choice. There are many of them ut there, who are more than happy to run their mouths. But there are very few of them out there, who are willing to put their money where their mouth is.

Cold was the Night

A long time has passed since I first stepped on the door. Many nights, many men, many struggles. But one thing I still remember like it was yesterday – cold was the night when it all started.

It started as a prank. They wanted to know if I can really do it. They wanted to see whether or not I break down and beg to be let back in or whether I tough it out. I did the latter. And boy where they pissed! But to be frank. I was very close to the breaking point. But it was all the years of bullying and abuse that preceded that moment, that really made me tough it out. And am I glad I did. Little did they know, that from that night onward, the journey would begin that eventually will lead me to overcome my demons and strive towards greatness in the realm of “night economy.”

But the scars are still there. They will remain with me forever. And wherever I go or whatever I do, I will also remember each and every insult, tug, push and spit. They have become my inner armour. They have made me into who I am today. And they always remind me of my inner struggle. A kind of Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde realia, that has brought me on a brink of inner annihilation more times than one would like to keep score of.

By now, my inner armour is balanced by the exterior facade to match the darkness hidden inside. This facade has become my “calling card”. An ultimate reason for my “climb to success”. There are plenty of “pretty boys” in the business. But at the end of the day, just like Alien needs a Predator, the door needs at least one ugly mug to balance the shining exterior of glamour and intrigue. And that, ladies and gentleman, is where I come in.

While growing up, I never really understood, how being a close resemblance to the “lovechild” of Chewbacca and Yeti can benefit me in any way but by becoming an eligible candidate for a real life extreme manhunting. Who wouldn’t want to bag a prey like me. Oh baby! Bring it on and slap that body!

But it turns out, that with enough scars and a crooked nose to polish it off, you can become an equivalent of a “Miss Nightmare”. Downside of this arrangement is, that there are only two groups populating our planet, that kind of like me – dogs (and that is cool, because I don’t care about cats. But I do care whether or not dogs like me) and freaky middle-aged mammas who can’t wait to #metoo the shit out of this “bad boy”.

Trust me when I tell you. Human brain is able to forget or “black out” a lot of things. But sadly, being groped by female Jabba the Hutt is not one of them. But hey! It’s not like you didn’t want it right. Because men also think with their smaller heads instead of their brains, or so the story goes anyway. So if you try to bring up even the slightest reference towards the fact that actually you had anything but pleasant feelings they will laugh you out of the room.

Yous as there are the “shades of grey”, there are shades of the night. And there is way more than fifty, that much I can tell you. And the nights are still “cold”. Even when its supposedly warm outside. (Which in our neck of the woods is a rare honour if you know what I mean). Even if they are not cold due to the weather conditions, they still make you feel “cold” inside. Almost as if you were already dead, but somehow Charon was not in a rush to sail over and pick you up. And I doubt its due to my hunky looks or charming personality. It might have more to do with the fact, that Lucifer has yet to decide whether or not I will be eligible for a direct placement in the bowls of his kingdom, or will he send me up to the Pearly Gates first. Just so he could mess with St. Peter and his dad. And all of this just because payback is a bitch!

And since I returned to the topic of “cold”, I would like to attach a minuscule remark to the previously stated theses. Since apparently I do not function in the same paradigm of thinking as majority of Homo sapiens ravaging the planet for its resources, I always feel betwixt two polar opposites – whether to grin or growl – whenever somebody comes up to me on a winter night and asks me “aren’t you cold?” Thanks for the brain freeze dear sire! What do you think?! Of course not! Night hounds are never cold, we are always warm and cuddly. So step right up and see what happens!

But at least cold keeps you on your feet. It keeps you alert and ready. And it possibly even keeps the death away. Because I’m sure that Charon would prefer the role of the chaperone far better than the one of a “bodysnatcher”. Then again – dead men tell no tales. And he just might prefer silence to the chit-chat.

I guess I can ask him when we meet. Hopefully Lucifer will not have closed his jazz club by then and I will be able to kick back a few cold ones with the crew – Lemmy, Gorshok and Jean D’Arc. These will be the fun days. I’m sure of it. Or, well …. I’m almost sure of it. Because it might just happen that St.Peter decides to return the favour and let me in. Boy, would that be a buzz kill! But as they say – pessimist is merely a well-informed optimist. And if there is one thing I know for certain (in addition to drinking and knowing things in general), there is no way in Hell they will let me see the big man in person. Unless he will stay true to his reputation and decides to embrace the “sheep that got lost” and yet again stick it to his son running the party joint!