Everyone has a tip for Berghain, the legendary Berlin venue that's both the most and least mysterious club in the world, but the most forceful tip I've gotten about Berghain was to never wander down into the basement—for in the basement, this rather exuberant person told me, I may find myself mistaken for a toilet.
Whether that was honest advice or just a hostile stereotype, I couldn't say. I escaped this annoying person and had a pleasant time. But if you want the Berghain toilet experience without being a person in Berghain—or perhaps being a person who has not been able to get into Berghain, which is the more likely scenario, let's be real—let me pitch you this idea: How about buying this crumpled wad of toilet paper that's definitely from one of the club's bathrooms? It's only $100 on eBay right now, and comes with a ripped wristband from a party a couple days ago to prove its provenance. I mean, Dan Ozzi once sold air from Williamsburg for like $20,000. Toilet paper from one of the most legendary clubs on Earth for just a hundred bucks? I honestly can't remember what the bathrooms were like, but seems like a steal?
Again, not here to judge, but if upon self-reflection you don't think you'll ever get to experience Berghain, perhaps now's your chance to get a piece. Berghain is notorious for being impossible to get into and for being extremely restrictive about cell phone use, which had given it mythical nightlife status. But those two policies also make Berghain one of the most open, fun parties on Earth, and is a big reason it's remained so popular with communities that wouldn't feel welcome at the bro-y luxury clubs that abound everywhere else. "I feel like I have a responsibility to make Berghain a safe place for people who come purely to enjoy the music and celebrate—to preserve it as a place where people can forget about space and time for a little while and enjoy themselves," security chief Sven Marquadt said in a GQ interview a few years back.
One crucial element of that? You can't buy your way into the club. Trying to slip the bouncer cash is going to fail, and they don't take reservations or do bottle service. No matter what Vegas-style clubs tell you, you can't buy cool with a briefcase of money, and eliminating all those avenues for assholes to get into the club is one good way to guarantee a party stays weird and good and judgment-free. There really is nothing else like it.
But it also makes attending Berghain a fussy nightmare that plenty of Good Taste People will tell you is a big fat waste of time, or otherwise has reached the point of saturation where bouncers have gone from excluding bad vibes to simply being exclusionary. So who knows, maybe the best way to protest this whole social construct is to pay a bunch of cash for a piece of Berghain and wipe your ass with it?