Anthony Belkin

Like most parents, I spend a lot of time thinking about the future my children will inherit and the exciting possibilities that await them. I would love for them to have the chance to achieve their dreams, to be able to go places I’ve never been to and do things I’ve never done. What matters to me most in the world, I’ve come to realize, is that my kids grow up to have a better nightlife than I had.

Nothing would make me happier than if my children were better off than I was, with so many more opportunities to hit the hottest clubs, exclusive foam parties, and underground techno DJ duels.

When I envision what’s ahead for my kids, I see a much brighter future. I see opportunity, prosperity, clubs with three levels of dance floors and a fucking killer mix of dubstep, industrial, and Europop jams.

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It can be tough out there, that’s for sure. Ever since I turned 18, I’ve been working it six nights a week, from nine until five in the morning. It seems like I’m rushing out the front door each evening, still putting my glitter on my face and with barely a chance to say goodbye to my kids, and then I’m off to Elysium for four hours before catching the bus across town to a second club, Nebula. And that doesn’t even include the after-hours club I hit up on the weekends. It’s hard getting busy like that every night, all the while struggling just to keep the cover charges paid. That’s not the nightlife I want for my children.

No, when I envision what’s ahead for my kids, I see a much brighter future. I see opportunity, prosperity, clubs with three levels of dance floors and a fucking killer mix of dubstep, industrial, and Europop jams. I get so proud when I think of my kids―the pride and joy of my life―being up there one day on suede lounge sofas, receiving their very own bottle service! Can you even imagine that―my kids at the chicest hotspots, where top celebrities have been known to make an appearance? It almost brings a tear to my eye. You see, 20 years from now, I don’t want my children worrying about how they’re going to afford Euphoria by Calvin Klein and firm-hold hair product. I want the bouncer to know their name and wave them on through.

I truly believe my kids deserve a nightlife in which no VIP room is beyond their reach.

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When I was younger, I didn’t have a lot of opportunities to party. I certainly didn’t have world-class DJs like Skrillex, Tiësto, and Afrojack spinning for me―far from it. I owned one skintight crop top, and I’d go out every night of the week trying to find a good club, sometimes waiting in line for hours only to realize the place was so exclusive I could never get in. If I did make it past the velvet rope, I had to make do with well vodka. I don’t want my children to go through that. I want them to have their choice of Absolut, Belvedere, Svedka, or Grey Goose in any flavor they choose.

A nightlife free of hardships like weak kamikazes or uneven guy-to-girl ratios―that’s the promise I’ve made to my kids.

When my grandparents first came to this country seeking a better nightlife, they didn’t know any of the right people, and they were certainly never on the guest list. While there were far more clubbing opportunities here than back in the old country, they were often denied admittance simply because of the way they looked and dressed. But they partied hard and persevered. My parents’ nightlives were a vast improvement, even though they had little to dance to besides disco and never had access to quality club drugs. Meanwhile, I’m proud to be the first member of my family to get into Club Altitude, and I made sure to take full advantage of that pulsating house music and pure, uncut MDMA. But I want even better for my children.

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However, as much as I’d love for my children to have access to all the underground trance clubs, I still lie awake wondering if their future won’t all be body shots and underlit dance floors. It breaks my heart to think that they could wind up wasting away in dead-end clubs that don’t even have live DJs―just prerecorded playlists. No parent should let their children inherit a scene like that.

As for now, though, I’ll just keep on grinding under the strobe lights each night, hoping for the best, dreaming that one day, my kids will take their old man with them to the sickest unmarked all-night warehouse rave in the city.