Cantaloupe is an events management team that grew out of the old Colombo Nightlife crew, AFAIK. I’ve met a few of the directors and they’re nice enough, though those sort of events and nightclubs (Amuseum) are not my scene at all. They are, however, a scene which a lot of people seem to enjoy. Underneath that lifestyle, however, there’s always an undercurrent of violence and danger. This New Year’s Eve nobody shot off guns (which happens in Colombo), but an entire stage did collapse, injuring hundreds. There are limited ways to respond to such disasters, but not being prepared, not getting the injured to hospital as a priority and continuing the party have not represented Cantaloupe or the Hilton well.
Archive for the 'Colombo' Category
Tracy Holsinger was kind enough to invite me for a rehearsal of Paraya, a play that’s opening this Wednesday the 18th. Where is the interesting part, it’s at the former Hotel Rio, a bombed out ruin next to the current Rio Cinema. The Rio we all know and drive by is an active soft porn theatre (currently screening Virgin Hunter, or Vergin Hunter, as they spell it outside). The Rio Hotel has been closed forever and it’s a post-apocalyptic wonderland, as is the play. For the performance you get to wander around the space and follow characters as you choose, which makes for a very interesting experience.
You’re honestly in more danger at an expensive Sri Lankan nightclub than in the depths of any slum. In the worst Colombo neighborhood people generally reserve violence for friends and family and fear the law. In Colombo nightclubs you’re generally OK, but since the war days spoilt brats have been popping off guns or thrashing people, harassing women, whatever. There’s also a growing and increasingly inebriated class of political and business scions who haven’t been raised by their parents and are largely outside of the law. And that doesn’t even start on the bouncers.
This week the Sri Lankan Police have been stopping cars to conduct a survey on traffic. Colombo actually has far less traffic than many global cities, but it’s still not good. So what to do? The survey created more traffic and was only in Sinhala, but it’s a start. There are a few obvious answers already on the table.
Bob Marley is a trishaw God here. The most popular international non-prophet in Sri Lanka would probably be him or Che Guevara. Right now, Che Guevara seems to be winning (judging by trishaw art) but Bob Marley is much better IMHO, having not killed people or run prison camps. Anyways, since he died his sons have been carrying on the reggae/rastafari tradition, including one Julian Marley, who will be gracing our shores this Sunday.
Sorry for the long radio silence. I took a bit of a long weekend and my main computer melted down. Working on an iPad’s not much fun. The main thing about this long weekend was that it rained, and rained and rained and rained. And now that rains have stopped here, we see that a hurricane has struck New York, flooding subways causing insane amounts of damage. Bit of a deluge.
I’m all for the government’s urban renewal program which began with the Cinnamon Gardens police station and culminated in the lovely Dutch Hospital. Thus I was looking forward to the renovation of the old Colombo Racecourse grounds, which was just opened. But, so far, it’s quite disappointing.
I’m not a hater I just blog a lot. I’m all for development but seriously, who’s all this stuff for? The five star hotels, luxury high-rises (Krrish), the bourgeoise shopping centers. We need some stuff like this, but we also need public transit and education and parks for, you know, the public.
Sushi, typically raw fish on rice, doesn’t surprise me anymore, but the idea of raw beef on rice does. Yet it is insanely delicious. I’m thinking more things should be eaten raw, with the exception, I suppose of salmonella prone chicken. Raw food contains less calories than cooked food and it also seems to be effective birth control for people on a 100% raw diet (Discover Magazine). That’s a joke though. No one should eat everything raw, but fish and beef for pleasure? Definitely. Nihonbashi is the best place in Colombo, if you’re gnawsome.
The flipside of stalker customer service is the lazy kind. Where they don’t care or act like you’re quite rudely interrupting them. The most recent personification of this has been the staff at the ODEL Roots. This time I think I managed to get the concept down in a photo. Above is the juice guy, leaning on a fridge as he’s flirting with the cashier. His expression is like, ‘and what are you doing here?’