Sunday, December 17, 2006

Euphoria Pt 1

The bait of a rave party is something I’m almost certain to fall at, given that you’d have to travel out of Singapore to be decently educated to rave culture and once you’ve been inducted to it, the immortality of memories would never allow you to give the same fervor to the local scene.

Hence, you see me occasionally zombified at petty Mambo Nights or Hip Hop sets which are made for decency. Remember, I start and get my kicks at an entry level deluded for moral straightjackets. Clubbing with me takes a lot of liberal acceptance and a liver willing to take punishment. You can leave your dogmatic sideshow for others.

When we decide to head up to JB for the HardSequence event, we had a divided agenda. CokeWhore and Muthu for the pure addiction to raving (and it’s a good excuse to shuffle), Pappy and Dek for the possibility of induced euphoria and me, for the cheap DVDs.

CokeWhore and Muthu had already left for JB in the late evening and by 9, they were rushing me to get my ass down to the hotel. Pappy and I met at Dek’s place and by 10 he was weaving through traffic and cutting queues at the Woodlands Checkpoint.

Pappy: “Nothing is going to stop me from getting there..”

I’ve never seen Pappy more motivated. Even the lack of hotel car parks would not dent his enthusiasm and we ended up parking at the hotel taxi stand. A couple drinks at the room and we dutifully made our entrance to the club which was thankfully just next to the hotel.

And once we got there, that nostalgic presentiment returned. The throbbing bass reverberating against my chest and the crowd of rave fanatics. It was a teasing precursor to ignite my misdemeanor. It was KL all over again and given the right twitch, it could feel like Australia..

We wasted no time. CW and Muthu went straight for a shuffle warm up, whilst Pappy and Dek embarked on what was increasingly looking like a lost cause, finding a ‘hook up’.

The worse thing about the place was that NO ONE seemed to be able to speak decent English. Which made my conversations with everyone from the ravers next to me to the KTV girls lounging on the sofas restricted to simple introductory pleasantries.

Girl: “I’m not from here…”
Me: “Ohh? Where are you from?”
Girl: “KL.”
Me: ".... Right...."

Look. Malaysia is Malaysia IS Malaysia. When I ask you where you’re from, you just tell me Malaysia and spare me the toll booth divides. It makes No difference to me if you’re from Sarawak or KL if neither one allows you to hold a decent conversation in English.

Yet, the lack of an English aptitude turns out to be a blessing when the guys end up mistaking a cop for the Tamborine man and the word ‘Ecstasy’ got lost in translation.

It seems that the law has finally caught up in Malaysia and my impression of drug dispensing machines in toilets and club corners are mere utopian fantasies which now, no longer exist. Save for a couple of girls who were shaking their heads so vigourously, they looked like they were challenging the spinning disco ball.

Then if this is so, would this no longer qualify as a rave?

This was beginning to pale too much in comparison with Australia. And even if I’ve yet to taste it from the Shuffle capital of the World, Melbourne, but Adelaide itself gave me quite a delightful insight.

The free distribution of pills, the sharing of bottles and the euphoric anthems. This was to remain in my memory, for now, the trip up here was fast spiraling down to mediocrity. Neither any of the guys had any luck, even with our variation of lingo from CW’s “do you have pills?” to the blatant ‘D’ word, nothing it seemed was falling for us.

The only saving grace was the music and the ‘like-mindness’ of everyone else. While the Melbourne Shuffle is a diasporic sideshow in local clubs where we’re driven to open spaces often away from the main dance area, it’s the main staple diet there. The main floor is meant only for shuffling. Call it a haven if you may..

By 1.11am, we finally made a successful contact. Wait, credit goes me. I found them. And then it went from ecstatic to pandemonium to absolutely hilarious.

10mins down, I was feeling weightless. I had lost sensation in my legs and everything begun spinning around me. I plunge myself against the chair, clutching the edge of the table tightly as I fixated my gaze on Muthu’s feet shuffling intermittently. I was feeling every vibration on the floor as if I was barefooted, walking on subwoofers.

Pappy was constantly going,

I am a pancake on the ceiling… I am flat as a pancake..”

Then, I felt it coming. The nausea from my accidental gulp of beer and that dry bitterness still stuck in my throat from that first line. I arduously laboured across to the toilet. Walking was fast becoming impossible especially when the floors seemed to be moving.

If I saw myself walking, I’d have laughed my pants off and shit myself just to stop me from laughing. I was like a flamingo high on vodka, taking big exaggerating steps, kicking out clumsily and stomping my feet hard on the ground from the misjudgment in distance.

And then the familiar bending over to spew the night’s undigested. Leeches. Everything out of me was black lumps that clung to the sides of the urinal like leeches.

My second stint bowing over the toilet bowl sobered me. I was back to walking decently without dependence on the railings and tables, or the occasional stranger that I’d support myself with.

When I got back, Dek was drinking off the ice bucket it was water bottle. Everything had stopped spinning and I was clear headed enough to reply anyone who asked me, “are you ok?” with a obligatory smile.

Dek and Pappy were done for the night. An over enthusiastic swipe and underestimation of the good was to be their undoing. Paranoia was setting in. Dek became increasingly worried that Pappy spewing greenish puke would get them arrested. And so they left, marking their exist with mucus and vomit along the way back with Pappy still going..

I’m flat as a pancake..”

I managed to sober up in time to enjoy the closing 30mins of the set. Sober enough to shuffle for about 10secs continuously.

The aftermath,

When we got back, Dek and Pappy were fast asleep. Pappy also chalked up an unnecessary tab from the mini bar for mineral water.

Me: “What the fuck?! We bought so many drinks! We had one huge bottle of mineral water in the room!”
Dek: “That’s what I told him, but he got paranoid.”
Me: “Paranoid of what?”
Pappy: “Cos the bottle was already open.. haha


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