Friday, June 03, 2005

We Are Cattle



("Sorry, mate, you've been drinking too much; you're not coming in" - A Tampere bouncer in his work)

Slavic Walkmen (local IDM DJs Lasso800 and Alexcore) had last night their free summer club at Klubi, so to support local scene I had to check it out. As guest DJs they had Joonas of Swäg/Toiminto and Arttu (a.k.a. DJ Art Barf-Uncle) of Mental Alaska, both of whom having played also at Eclectro Lounge. Especially Arttu's set was great again, a truly madcap excursion into noise and easy listening and whatever; for example, at one point he played Helen St. John's schmaltzy 'Love Theme from Flashdance', mixing it into some chaotic noise sounds. For me, Arttu is a bigger DJ star than all of these boring top-notch beatmatching tech-house club DJs together.

After the Slavic Walkmen party was over, someone proposed continuing the night at the nearby club restaurant called Semafori, which is located at the upstairs of Tampere's Railway Station, just a short walk away from Klubi. Semafori is not one of those watering holes I usually frequent, and very soon I found out why. The rest of the members of our small party (Slavic DJs and Lasso800's sister Hanna plus Arttu the Man) got in with no problems, but when it was my turn to enter these precious premises, for some reason this Tony Halme-lookalike bouncer (why are the members of this profession always big, obese bodybuilders?) started to cross-examine me, about how much I had been drinking, and so on. Flabbergasted by this treatment (since other members of our party had probably enjoyed more bewerages during the night than me), I duly answered that only four beers -- I'm not a heavy drinker, never have been, so I was really amazed by this. After examining me for a while, this Cerberus guarding the gates of Hades mercifully decided to let me in, after all. My criminal-like treatment continued inside when the female bartender agreed to let me pay my lager with Visa Electron only after I had presented my ID card; usually my payments with VE anywhere else have required no further documents.

Well, after checking out Semafori for a while, I understood why it was easy for the staff to treat their clientele like riff-raff. The place was a dump, full of shabby rock people and other losers you usually see in bars like that. People next to our table kept falling off their barstools; the DJ was playing crap bar stuff like a selection of Prodigy, Van Halen and The Eagles, while giving slick speaks in between the songs with his suave voice intended to be crowd-pleasing. Gratefully, it didn't took long before the place was closing. Now I understand why I don't usually visit bars of this sort; where you can see the human degradation in all its variations, where bad taste is more a rule than exception. Where people are treated (and probably are too) like ignorant cattle, only good to be pushed and shoved around. pHinnWeb's Restaurant Guide gives no stars to Semafori, Tampere. Moo!

Why I Hate Bouncers

Animal Exploitation Photo Gallery