This may get me in trouble, but to be honest - I think it has to be said!
I have written many times about the importance of Leather Bars to our community, I wont repeat myself too much but to me a social element to our community and a public space to play are both critical to our survival and growth as a community - and a place where young gay men can find out about leather and kink.
We are all sad to hear about the closure of Argos, Martijn and the RoB team invested heavily and sadly can no longer continue loosing money on a bar with a declining customer base; I completely understand that and thank them for what they have tried to do.
There were many posts yesterday regarding its closure, and the usual comments were...
"This is sad"
"But that was my favourite bar..."
"I have so many memories there"
"I hope someone takes it over"
People were generally sad that it was closing. Some of the people that made these comments, I know a little, or very well. Few of them have actually been to Argos for a long time, or go very irregularly. This made me a little angry.
People have no right to moan about loosing something that they don't use! How much effort does it take to pop in once or twice a week (or even a month!) for a beer? And believe me, Ive heard all the excuses...
"But I don't feel safe going out in gear anymore..." Answer? Change there, or go in a group and be proud!
"Tourists make fun of us in gear" Answer? So what - are you a man or a mouse? also - see answer above...
"I don't see guys in gear anymore there - so I don't go" Answer "If you don't go for that reason, others don't either, you are moaning about a problem that you are creating yourself
"Beer is so expensive there now" Answer oh for fucks sake - 3 euros or 3.50 for a beer - have a couple will that break the bank?
"The bars are not like they used to be" Answer thats because you, and others have spent the last couple of years making one or more of the excuses on this list.
And the worst one "Online sites and Apps are killing the bars" Answer : Personally I don't believe that this is the biggest contributor, but, lets say it is why the hell can't you use both?? Use the Internet to make contact and arrange to meet in a bar? A lot safer especially for first time meetings.
So, what am I trying to say? If you don't want to lose these places that are so important to you - stop moaning and get of your ass and do something about it.