I was walking home today and reflected on some annoying bars / clubs in my neighborhood. While my hood is on a nice course of what other people call gentrification (I call it the flux), some old-timers hang out and are converted into something else. Something bad.
Case 1: Clärchen’s Ballhaus
Once (like, in the 1930’s), a favorite spot in Mitte to flirt, dance, hook up and do other sinister things (conspiring or absinth, anyone?) it became a GDR dancing place and kept its old-fashioned brand and product until some years ago a local Mitte mafia (from South Germany) bought it. They introduced Pizza to maximize profit and kept the hideous tourist-trap dancing shit as a front to squeeze out money from the stupid.
Case 2: Sophienclub
This was a club in the 1980’s where GDR people would dance and party to counter-revolutionary music from the West. Hard rock, mostly. Visualize lots of denim jacket long haired dudes with mustaches hooking up with chicks with shoulder paddings and a questionable taste for cheap, chemical liquor. When the wall came down the place turned itself into an electro success.It quickly transformed by profit hungry do-no-goods into a place where tourist groups on a package trip would be shipped of into a “famous club” for 2-3 hours probably as a part of their “visit the tourist club scene” ticket.
Since many years no taxi which drives into the street even knows it still lives. It’s just a tourist trap for assholes who should plan their trip better. I never went. When I die, Satan will greet me on its doorsteps.
Here’a a suggestion: let’s introduce socialist-capitalism!
Berlin should have the right to nationalize these eyesores. Based on popular vote (residents get three votes, members of the “people in the know” council (an elected group of culture types) get two votes, and the general population gets one vote) the places would be nationalized, closed and the owners temporarily arrested (for crimes against humanity). These nationalized assets would then be sold-off to the suitable bidder based on the preferences of the populace.
Flux. Not gentrification. Let’s cull old-time zombies!