Tales From the Gay Bar – ”The Masked Invaders” or ”Fire Bad, Beer Good”

Posted: August 21, 2013 in TFTGB
Tags: , , , , , ,

In late 2011 I had been running the parties for about 8 months, at the same time I managed the bar and had been doing so for about a year. I had seen some shit.

You know how your veteran buddies that have been deployed come home with empty eyes, and hands that sometimes seem to grip their no longer issued rifles before they remember where they are? Burning out, for me, was like that, only it was a walkie, not a rifle.

I had nightmares that left me shaking and paranoid for hours. Nightmares of what would happen if we had someone come in to the party and start shooting. Of people dropping from heart failure in the middle of the dancefloor. Of my close friends and coworkers being hurt by terrible accidents. Of ODs, rapes and fires. Horrifying  things!

The part that always woke me up screaming, and it was the same in every dream, was me, standing in the center of this catastrophe, a thousand nameless faces all screaming at me “NEO, WHAT DO WE DO?” And I would grab my walkie to start giving orders. But the battery would be dead.

(Jeez I’m gonna need a beer for this one. INTERMISSION. Okay, I’m back, trusty Tuborg by my side)

Some of my nightmares were based on real events I had already lived through once, some have come true since. This is the Tale of how one of my nightmares came true and how that would cure me.

It was December. The snow had been falling heavy all week and showed no sign of slowing down. The streets were crammed with busy people doing their Christmas shopping and trying their best to erase any hint of their body shape under woolen underwear, hats, scarves, earmuffs, boots, gloves, and overcoats. Really the amount of layers of clothes one can wear to keep out the cold of a Scandinavian winter is quite extraordinary!

In preparation for all the extra pressure there would be on the cloakroom at the evenings party, I was sitting at the old wooden table in the backroom of the bar, desperately calling everyone and anyone I knew. I was having about as much luck as a junkie chasing the dragon. In the end I forsook my fruitless endeavor. The two girls already on duty would just have to run fast. Sucks, but what can you do. Sucked for me too; I’d have to break the bad news.

At 18.00 we started setting up (that’s 6 PM for the English speakers and 2 and a half hours after sundown, two weeks before winter solstice for the Vikings). The setup ran smooth, too smooth. Here, in my country, we have a saying: “Generalprøven skal gå galt” (The final rehearsal must go wrong). The meaning of this is, that if, during the final rehearsal, something is amiss, there is time to fix it.

I am a big fan of things going wrong during the setup. And oh boy do things go wrong! People not showing up for their shifts, power failures, fridges on the fritz. Hell I’ve even been stuck in an elevator with five hysterical dragqueens. Two of which were having a feud at the time. I had just put my walkie on the bar downstairs, there was no cell reception, the party would start in 20 minutes and I tend to get claustrophobic. (Needless to say, this was one of my returning nightmares)

As long as these things happen during the setup, well, then there’s time to find a solution. So nothing at all going wrong gets me on my toes. Good thing too. I would need to be in that state for what was to come.

Despite the freezing temperatures; -5 degrees Celsius with a windchill factor of -20 (23 and -4 degrees Fahrenheit for our friends across the pond, 4.9 and -3 degrees Rømer for the fans of Danish astronomers). Them gays came a-flocking to our doors. As predicted, the girls in the cloakroom were trapped under a soft mountain of coats, scarves and gloves.

The evening seemed to shift into gear (hey I might be a lesbian, but I still know how to drive stick) and take off down the road to Partytown. It cruised comfortably past Jägerbomb Plaza, turned right on Make-out Avenue and passed Gaga Boulevard without any trouble. But at the intersection of Single Ladies Street and Tequila Shot Road it ran a red light.

Suddenly: Flashing blue lights came on!

Actual flashing lights, not in the metaphor, we have officially left the metaphor. We are back in the real world, back at the party. More specifically we are in the entrance where blue lights are flashing through the windows and 10 big men, dressed all in black, wearing black ski-masks and utility belts with guns, come storming through the door.

All my brain can manage is: Yippee ki-yay Motherfucker?

Let’s recap: Scary men with guns, wearing black ski-masks have entered a party filled with drunken gays and I’m standing there, walkie half-way to my mouth and I am lost for words. I am without words even, mute, it’s as if words have never existed and now is the first time in my life I need them.

My mouth might be mute, but my brain is spinning at a million cycles a second. “Extremists here to kill us all for our sins against god”, but blue lights? “Bank robbers here to hold us all hostage, blue lights are police, we are surrounded” Bank robbery at 2 in the morning? “Okay then they’re escaped convicts” In matching uniforms? “You know what, you’re not helping!”

And my words come tumbling back so fast a few spill out before I can stop them. “WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON HERE?” I immediately clamp my hand over my mouth to stop further spills.

The last of the 10 men in black skid to a halt. He turns to me and, muffled through the mask he goes:

MIB#10: “Who’re you?”
Neomety: (Without even thinking) “I’m running this fucking party, who the fuck are you?”
MIB#10: “Security”
Neomety: “Whadda’ya mean security, what kinda security wears masks and carries guns?”
MIB#10: “Fire department”
Neomety: “What? There’s no fire! I am in charge here, we do not allow fires” (I know, who does, but remember; my mouth had only just regained the power of speech)
MIB#10: (Finally decides he might as well explain) “We’re the fire departments security unit, we handle this buildings security system. An alarm went off in a part of the building with the highest security rating. This is our standard response.”
Neomety: “Well all right, but next time you might wanna give a girl some information. You scared the shit outta me, and my guests”
MIB#10: “Sorry about that, they’re only stun guns you know”

The rest of the 10 joined their buddy. There was nothing, a false alarm. All that for a 0 in the system that should have been a 1. MIB#10 exchanged some words with one of the others and he stepped forward and apologized for the way they barged in. Apparently he was in charge. They left and the party was broken.

Broken is the only term I can think of that applies. The mood was weird. People didn’t leave because there was too much excitement to discuss. But they didn’t party either. I was mentally calculating the losses the bars would take after this incident, and whether or not we would make it up next time with all the extra guests the gossip would draw. When suddenly the blue lights were back! What now?

Well this is what, and I would not believe it if I hadn’t been there to see it myself. Through the door walked the 10 MIBs again, but this time carrying something. Their leader raised his voice and said “We’re real sorry for rushing in on you before, please accept our apology” And the MIBs put down what they were carrying: 5 cases of beer. And I, not a very huggy person, grabbed the nearest MIB and hugged like I have never hugged before.

The party was cured. I was cured. 300 gay men tried to convince the MIBs to stay for a beer, I was hugged and kissed (and fondled) by 100 lesbians and the party was one of the best I can recall. But most importantly, I was cured. My nightmares went away and they have not returned since.

So if any of you suffer from stress-related nightmares. Just go out and find yourself in the exact situation you dreamed off, 1 out of 1 people have found this solution saved their life!

  1. lizardomd says:

    Great post!


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