The loud, pulsing base. Darkness. Strobe lights.
Girls out in packs, dressed up in skimpy, sequined outfits gyrating their hips on the dance floor or hovering about the bar, expressions of bored aloofness plastered across their faces.
Men wafting about in button-down shirts, buying drinks for themselves and their buddies, offering drinks to girls, slurring out lame, corny pickup lines and aggressive-but-clumsy attempts to feel her up later on in the night.
Tall, muscle-bound doormen looming over everything, the imminent threat of violent removal if you step out of line.
Silver-tongued bartenders serving infinite streams of patrons while stripping women away from their boyfriends or the men trying to pick them up with the ease of the years of day-in, day-out training in the nightlife environment.
The VIP section, empty sometimes, other times crowded with men and women sometimes laughing and drinking, but more often looking out over the rest of the nightclub and wondering how to get that fun to come to them.
For several decades the nightclub’s towered as Western society’s ultimate proving ground for the man on prowl: if he can pick up women here – here, where they look their best; where other men gather in droves to take their chances with them; where their walls are up higher than anywhere else... surely, this man is a true ladies man.
Yet how much of that is reality, and how much simply commercial fantasy?
Are nightclubs simply used as a convenient proxy by the media for “mate value”?
And, should you spend your time in them... or are they a waste of time?