Saturday, August 18, 2007

The World Of The bouncer

Uh-oh... off on another kick. This time Bouncers. I never worked professionally, but one time I was doing security with some guys at a huge multi-keg and music party. My partner threw some poor guy through a plate glass window. I'd say he over-reacted. Of course, the cops came, because it was a rented public building, and it kinda put a damper on the whole party. Bouncers have tough, dangerous jobs, and mostly it is about control and keeping the peace.
I've written about this before, but I knew a guy that managed a nude dance bar in a rough neighborhood in Portland. One night, two young gangsters got into it with some locals and my manager friend and the owner grabbed the gangsters and "escorted" them out. In front of the bar, there was some shoving and bad talk. The older gangster told the other one "Do it, do it!" The kid pullde out a .32 pistol and shot my friend in the thigh. He was able to hang on to the guy and handcuff him to a street post until the cops came. Later in jail, a mistake was made, and they let the guy out by accident. They combed the streets and found him and re-arrested him later. My friend recovered and was just fine. Mind you, these guys (the owner and manager) had no fight training what-so-ever. Pretty risky stuff.
I am going to see if I can get this movie on NetFlicks, it looks pretty damned good.


Sa Bum Nim Pieschala said...

I used to bounce.
I got extra bucks for not looking like a bouncer, so I could find the troublemakers in the crowd.

I agree with what they had to say, the violence it the best part. But I never relied on my "fellow bouncers" to guard my back.

Instead myself and all my (at the time) black belt friends would hang out there on our time off. Bully? Over achiever? I don't know :)

Granted this is Chicago not big fancy New York, but I always made sure people knew I (or friends) had a way of bumping into them off hours. I'd even tell guys my hours, which car was mine etc.

I never had to smack anybody up too much because of that. People just knew not to F*** around. And it was pretty peaceful.

Nobody wants their night ruined because the bouncer beat the crap out of a drunk. It's bad business.

The worst thing I ever did was take a guy's eye out and break his elbow. But he had a knife and a really big friend.

Oh well that was then ...

Scott said...

I'm going to rent that movie too.
Bouncers of course get by mostly on their looks and reputations. In my interviews with bouncers I've noticed a really wide variety of violent techniques for getting someone to leave. Surprise seems pretty important.
I was hired to bounce at an underground club once. Some guy got mad, reach over the counter and took a handful of cash from the register, he didn't see me waiting behind him and I used the simplest two-finger chin-na and locked him up against a wall. He could not move at all, but I didn't have a free hand to take the money out of his hand so I waited for another bouncer to come. He got the money and then just started punching the guy, so I thought, heck I'm not going to hold this guy while he punches him, so I let go. The guy started to walk down the stairs out of the club and the other bouncer was still trying to punch him, so the this guy pulls out some mace and maced the other bouncer right in the face and then took off running.
I decided this wasn't really a good job for me.

Sa Bum Nim Pieschala said...

I loved it! I got to meet tons of people. You could always get "favors" because everybody wants to "get in good" with the bouncer. I always let them think that.

But I never forgot it was about one thing "power" and I was the big dog in the house.

My favorite technique was to watch a troublemaker for a while. Once he had a few beers in him, walk up to him and, how do I describe it(?), thumb punch him in the bladder while I whispered "behave" to him. All people see is me saying something which they can't hear over the noise, the never see the punch.

I guess a "thumb punch" would be like a TKD hammer fist but with your knuckle sticking up and done in reverse. They always piss them selves and leave.

Another one I liked was to give them a very fast jab in the stomach followed back fist to the jaw. That way if they barf it's on their friends. This is especially handy if they are with their girlfriend. Then he's more worried about her than getting back at you (usually).

You "The guy started to walk down the stairs out of the club" I never knew a drunk that didn't trip or wobble or something while going down the stairs.

One thing I learned in cleaning house was it wasn't so much how you handled it. It was the way and the timing (when possible).

You had to involve pain (never blood, people will pity) but more than that HUMILIATION. Make them never want to show their face.

Subtlety is also very important. Foot stomps, shin scrapes and just a good thumb jab in the ribs work well.

I guess my thing was I always wanted handle issues quietly. Like I said nobody wants their night ruined, especially if their on a date, by a guy who couldn't hold his booze and a bouncer that kicked the tar out of him.

I always carried mace of my own too and a expendable metal baton. But that was always last resort because it makes dealing with the cops a mother. Well some cops anyway.

I picked up this style of bouncing because at boot camp I had a DI that never yelled. He whispered. He said, "If I yell, you tune me out. If I whisper, you have to listen."

Besides it's a job, a fun one, but nothing to get emotional about.

Dojo Rat said...

"Favors"...Hmm, let's see... Pretty girls? :)

Scott said...

Hi sa bum nim pieschala,

Cool story. This particular gig I had was on the weird side. The "person" working the cash register was a wild transsexual. The guy who I bounced had only been in the club for 10 minutes, he was not drunk, but maybe on speed.

The whole club was an illegal party and the building was not up to code. It was an early rave I guess, lots of vitamin drinks, and Extacy. The guy I bounced asked for his money back and when the transsexual said no he just took it, plus a little more.

I think punching someone is a fine way to get someone to leave a club, it was just totally un-necessary in this situation and the other bouncer wasn't listening to me. He was actually wearing Chain-Mail Armor, which as he found out, does not work against mace. He took off the armor to throw at the guy too, but by then our "thief" had fled.

I guess if it had gone better I might have had a different career.

Sa Bum Nim Pieschala said...

"favors" never meant chicks ya perv :). I was all business all the time.

If you met up with somebody from the bar you had to keep the "mask" or bouncer act going.

People don't realize it's all an illusion.