SuperCity: An ode to the bottle rat

Aug. 6, 2014 | 2 Comments


BY CHRISTA WITTMIER / Special to the Star-Advertiser

This weekend marks a significant event in super-fun music as The Chainsmokers descend on to Hawaii for a sold-out show Saturday at The Republik. The Facebook event page for the show has evoked a bit of discussion separating the “Selfie” lovers from fans who listened to their music well before the hit single was released.

The Chainsmokers AP


Presented by Electric Palms Presents

» Where: The Republik, 1349 Kapiolani Blvd.
» When: 10 p.m. Saturday
» Cost: Sold Out
» Info:

Personally, I’m in the middle ground, having first hearing them last spring when DJ Deko dropped their remix of Say Lou Lou’s “Julian” at the Fighting Eel fashion show, which caused me to run over to him after I couldn’t Shazam the track.

Hearing it played out I instantly knew it was the perfect opening track to my summer mix, but was having a hard time finding it. I knew this was exactly the song I needed – the perfect indie upbeat sound that can carry an entire mix with its light pop aesthetic crying out, “BE HAPPY, DAMN IT!!!”

“Selfie” is to The Chainsmokers, however, what “Harlem Shake” was to Baauer. A perfectly timed crossover anthem that was played too much, too fast — turning true fans off quite a bit and making otherwise underrated, underpaid producers rich and opening doors they may have never otherwise seen opened so quickly.

I think it’s awesome and a well-deserved achievement for the duo who have been consistently putting out great music. Next week brings the debut of The Chainsmokers new weekly radio show on SiriusXM, “Nice Hair with The Chainsmokers,” which will air on the Electric Air channel starting on Aug. 18. I’m looking forward to this as they will use it as their avenue to play up-and-coming acts (which they have a very keen ear for) and also display their quirky humor.

“SELFIE” IS both annoying and relevant as an ode to the bottle rat, which is probably why the female voice over on the track is almost impossible to listen to.

The sad thing is, people really talk like that. The sadder thing? Now bottle rats have an anthem for themselves, seemingly justifying their irritating and narcissistic behavior.

Can I just say this now? It’s not cool to talk like that.

COURTESY CRAIG GIAMBRONEThe Chainsmokers cash cow single isn't popular with everyone, but they're laughing all the way through the festival circuit and their tour straight to the bank off its success.


The Chainsmokers cash cow single isn’t popular with everyone, but they’re laughing all the way through the festival circuit and their tour straight to the bank off its success.

As irritating as that voice can be, bottle rats are a necessary evil. As someone who actually pays for bottle service, I know it’s not as fun to party VIP-style unless you have people to share it with. There are roughly 25 drinks in a liter bottle of Grey Goose, and if any one person drinks that in a night they are legally dead anyway. So why not share?

If those people happen to be gorgeous and fun females who love to dance and smile and be seen, well, there really isn’t too much wrong with that. It’s too loud to have thoughtful, insightful conversations anyway. True friends are awesome — especially when it’s time to pay and tip the server — but sometimes you just need a little padding.

According to bottle service regular Jason Nagamine, a bottle rat is someone “in a group, (who is) attractive and wanting free drinks.”

“They will be scarce if they aren’t getting free drinks without effort,” he said. “So they are a controllable evil.”

“Their favorite pastime when not in the club is posting selfies,” fellow bottle service regular Chad Yamamoto said. “They do this for two reasons. The main (one) is to validate their existence. The second is so we don’t forget what they look like just in case we forgot what they looked like since the last selfie they posted probably three or four hours before.

“Bottle rats are actually very insecure. They need the likes and comments from their selfies because of their lack of self-esteem, hence the word selfie. Yes they are beautiful, but the sad reality is more than likely they grew up being reinforced that the only thing they have going for them is their looks.”

STAR-ADVERTISER / 2014Let the professionals handle it: Heading to The Manor's two-year anniversary on Friday at M Nightclub? Be sure to tell one of the club's bottle service hostesses, pictured, who your guests are to avoid a bottle rat infestation at your table.


Let the professionals handle it: Heading to The Manor’s two-year anniversary on Friday at M Nightclub? Be sure to tell one of the club’s bottle service hostesses, pictured, who your guests are to avoid a bottle rat infestation at your table.

My verdict? It’s our own fault for continuing to host and encourage this behavior. We want the beauty and flashiness, then we complain when people take advantage.

If we want people to contribute, it needs to be communicated when they are invited. If everyone scatters when it’s time to pay the bill, just don’t invite them again. The best part about Hawaii is dime piece club girls are a dime a dozen, and new 21-year-olds who want to party keep showing up.

As long as we are the ones paying for the drinks we hold the cards. How many friends do we want when we are out? How good do we want our table to look? How much fun do we want to have? It’s up to us at the end of the day.

As much as I love The Chainsmokers and hate “Selfie,” it definitely rings true so I can tolerate it. Just like bottle rats — if I don’t want to hear them I can just turn it off.
Christa Wittmier has chronicled Honolulu nightlife since 2004. She is senior marketing director at Young’s Market Co. of Hawaii and executive director of music for Pow! Wow! Hawaii, and also helps promote the popular Bacardi Pool Party on Oahu. Contact her via e-mail or follow her on Twitter.

  • Japman Scoop

    fun article!

  • Kevin S Oshiro

    Oxford online dictionary / Urban dictionary’s newest term for next year: the bottle rat (which is different from a “hood rat”); right next to “bae,” “derp,” “yolo” and of course, “ratchet.”