22 New Rules of (Not) Clubbing
Have you seen the draft list of 22 measures said to be applied to night-time entertainment venues once they are allowed to reopen?
It will be submitted to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) today, ahead of the fifth phase of Covid-19 curb-easing. While some of the measures are to be expected, a few rules have raised eyebrows as they don’t sound conducive to reopening.
Worse still, it seems that the person who suggested these new regulations has never put foot into a nightspot before.
Here are a few of the doubtful measures and why I, with due respect as always, think the authorities need to rethink them.
4. Refrain from using service in a group of more than five people.
If your squad hasn’t tested positive for Covid-19 and none of you have returned from any “at-risk countries” (since all international commercial flights have been banned until the end of the month and all new cases have been imported and are in state quarantine), why can’t you (who wears a face mask religiously) hit a club or a pub together in a group of more than five people? This rule just doesn’t make sense. Also, why five? Is the government is afraid of activists using clubbing as a facade to hold a secret protest or something? The authorities think the more the riskier, I assume. Yet, on the BTS or MRT at peak hour you may well find your face in someone’s armpit.
9. Eating and drinking are allowed but you should refrain from singing and dancing.
This rule beats the purpose of going to entertainment venues with live bands or DJ sets. This makes it sound like you’re better off staying at home, putting on headphones and singing to your heart’s content. I should add that another stipulation already asks that the stage must be at least 2m away from the patrons or there must be a partition between performers and viewers. Asking people to stay still and don’t make a sound too is an overkill, IMHO. We’re talking about nightspots where people should be allowed to be rowdy and let loose — they deserve that since 2020 has been horrible so far. It’s not a vipassana retreat, is it?
19. Competitions and group activities that can cause cheering are prohibited.
The authorities seem to think that it’s enough fun for people to get together and talk quietly among themselves.
15. Prohibit gathering, shouting and wandering around the premises.
Does this imply that nightclubs can’t sell tickets to a special themed night as gathering is frowned upon during a time when they need business the most? Does this mean that mingling isn’t allowed either? Does this mean that you can’t send your wingman/woman to fetch the number of the stranger you fancy? They should have changed this rule to “stay at home”.