Lately I’ve been hearing a lot of my friends complaining about being mistreated at events in Colombo. I’ve not come across this too often, so naturally I’m wondering what this is about. And it’s all pretty simple really; Sri Lankans aren’t used to how events are handled in other countries.
For example, let’s look at the latest sensation in the clubbing scene, MOJO’s. MOJO’s does something that no other club in Colombo (that I know of) does, they have a line outside the club, and bouncers decide who gets in and who doesn’t. Now this is quite typical in the US, most of us have seen it happening in movies, but this never happens here. And since we’re Sri Lankan, it’s a problem. It’s not just a problem; it’s an insult, it’s offensive to do something like that. Seriously.
Another instance was at the recent album launch of local Heavy Metal giants Stigmata. Now, with the venue being a school’s auditorium, it would seem obvious to some that there would be certain restrictions. No smoking, no alcohol, and of course, no illegal substances, or objects that could cause harm to members of the audience or the performers. So they had bouncers frisking ticket-holders before they came in. This was found to be offensive.
Why is this?
I suppose it might be the fact that we’re so used to a certain norm, and when that changes, there’s naturally resistance. But does this happen more often in our country than others? I wonder. It’s entertaining to flip through Facebook and find people ranting away about how they were frisked and their cigarettes taken away, slamming the band for allowing it to happen. Personally, I don’t think that’s fair. You can’t really blame them for choosing a good venue and then having to enforce regulations. It’s a compromise that has to be made. But the metal scene here is used to having gigs at clubs, with smoke filling the air and beer and arrack galore. How long is it going to take till we get used to this?
Until then it’s going to be entertaining, at least for me, to watch people fight and argue over whether or not these rules should be enforced in the first place and who’s to blame. It’s a lot of fun watching people pointing fingers, as long as they’re not pointing them at you. Oh, the times they are a’changing.