Ladies, Club Promoters Aren’t Your Friends

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There’s a special breed of human in New York City that I am currently beyond fascinated by. Club promoters. Let’s be real, this guy is not your Average Joe. The nightlife promoter lives for champagne bottles the size of my body, the seizure-inducing strobe lights, and the suffocating fog machines. He lives for all of that shit.

This last weekend, I went to brunch with some friends. Well. I thought it would be brunch, but clearly I didn’t realize what I was getting myself into. I found myself at the Highline Ballroom double fisting drinks and a few feet away from a C-list Dita von Teese impersonator. Clearly not the type of brunch I usually go to but whatever, turn down for what? And of course, the place was teeming with promoters. The sweet, sleazy, and the sour-faced. All of them showed up to make some extra cash and to possibly take one of the underage European girls home afterwards.

The thing is that these guys are people too. They, like the Taco Bell workers of the world, also need to make a living. They get cash for every person they bring in, and of course that amount triples for every girl. If you’re a feminist please don’t talk to any promoters, they will obliterate any faith you have left in humanity. And girls, don’t fall for these guys. Really though. A New York City club promoter will flirt and text and give you and your friends the royal treatment; but if Lindsay Lohan stumbles into the club he’s going home with her. This guy is a slave to the night in ways he can no longer control. He’s a social status leech and a parasite of excess.

I can’t hate too much because not all promoters are bad people. I have met a few that are genuinely nice guys. But let’s be real, the New York nightlife scene is brutal. From the moment a promoter texts you “How many girls?” you can’t help but walk around with a bad taste in your mouth. The club scene in New York is about as surface-level as a frozen-over lake. No one cares if your brain is the size of a chickpea as long as you have the right shoes on. No one wants to know what your job is unless you’re the Editor in Chief of some magazine they’ve sort of heard of. So just remember while you’re texting your promoter the day of a party, thinking he’s going to be the one to save your night—this guy is just as powerless in the nightlife culture as the rest of us. No matter which way you spin it, you are one more bloodsucker in this parasitic nightlife food chain.

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Rula Al-Nasrawi is a Columbia Graduate whose writing has appeared in ViceThe Atlantic, and other online publications. Her first language is valley girl. Californian bred, NYC residing. @RulaOfTheWorld


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