I used to work in a club as a bouncer, or rather, the "front office" as they called it since I didn't handle security. Years of checking IDs, welcoming VIPs, chatting up beautiful girls, and watching people get drunk off their asses and fight has taught me a lot about human behavior and how adapting it can lead to a fulfilling life.
Partying may be deemed as a fun pastime, but it's mostly looked down upon as a waste of time because you know, that's where young college guys (the so-called club "douche bags,") and girls (the supposed "sluts" and "bimbos") hang out.
But if you look deeper and push yourself not to judge, there're many things you can learn about life.
The rich VIPs
Every night the truly rich would hit the club in their suits, Chanel, Prada, Armani you name it, they wear it. Their reserved tables are filled with bottles, champagne being the party favor of choice and perfect vehicle to flaunt money. And yes, their entourage consists of models.
Lesson: It's easy to conclude that these wealthy individuals have nothing to do with their lives, hence why they just spend everything they have on alcohol. Many people perceive the privileged few to be arrogant because their abundance of wealth enables them to have a higher level of confidence and false sense of security. While this is true to a certain extent, I've gotten to know some wealthy people and what I found was a goldmine of values and principles that helped them get rich in the first place.
Many of them worked hard to become what they are. It was actually inspiring to hear about how they struggled to maintain their businesses and the obstacles they overcame without the security of a stable paycheck.
The hot girls
What good is a club without hot girls? That's where they supposedly congregate right?
Lesson: Superficial beauty doesn't last.
I know what you’re thinking, hot girl with long, silky hair and a slim figure. That's hot right?
Sadly, all of that can be instantly ruined when you see them drunk, puking and passed out on the road with their undergarment exposed. That's not hot at all, it's disgusting and a real turn off. There were many times I chatted with pretty girls and was greeted by the smell of vomit in their breath. Real beauty lies in character, personality, and a positive outlook on life. Having the full picture isn't just about having beauty, it's about combining all of your positive qualities and having charisma.
Almost every night there would be a fight in the club and most were exclusively between guys. It could be because of something as stupid as someone was looked at the wrong way or somebody bumped into somebody... in a crowded club. Go figure.
Lesson: Don't ever indulge in violence. It's for losers. Just walk away.
It's a very real and hectic situation when a fight breaks out. It's not funny or cool at all. The adrenalin and tension can be felt in the air, and creates a tense environment for everyone at the club.
I know it can be aggravating when someone gets in your face outside. But keep your cool and walk away. You wouldn't want to make a spectacle out of yourself, and be known as, “the guy who got into that fight.” It’s not attractive to women either.
Nobody ever wins in a fight. Even if you managed to floor the guy, your fists would still be bleeding. Save yourself the trouble and practice nonviolence.
People who treat service staff like crap
This is the bane of my existence at the club. These are the people who made my night a living hell.
Young, poor, rich, tourists, celebrities, you name it. Many people belong in this group.
Lesson: “A person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person.” - Dave Barry
This is one of my favorite quotes and it perfectly captures the point here. People can have double standards when it comes to treating people with respect. And most commonly, it has got to do with dealing with people customer service staff.
I think everybody should show everybody basic respect and common courtesy, but sadly, many other people do not feel the same way.
Your newfound "friends"
I've made a ton of friends at the club, and I didn't even have to try. Friends of friends of friends were very eager to get to know me. At first I was feeling super awesome about all the attention, but it got tiring and even demoralizing after a while.
The reason? They just wanted favors from me. They just wanted to cut the queue, get on the guest list, get in the VIP area or get a free drink.
Lesson: Some people do not see you for who you are. They just want to see how you can help them.
Be wary of people who seem way too nice to you and constantly compliment you. Your best bet is to just ignore these people completely. Sift through the garbage. Make some real friends instead and remain friends for life.
Alden Tan | Elite
Photos courtesy of Kirill Was Here