July 3, 2007

A cool bit of therapy for stressed out Spaniards

From Independent Online/AFP:
Stressed out in Spain?
Eight stressed-out people took hotel chain NH Hotels at its word on Tuesday, giving vent to their social frustrations by smashing up rooms in one of the group's establishments, facing renovation.

"This anti-stress technique consists of destroying everything in order to feel liberated," explained Eduardo Aldan, a Spanish actor charged with selecting the edgy eight for the demolition job on Madrid's central Alcala boulevard.

There were an initial 1,000 candidates - which means there are plenty of frustrated people still out there.

Those selected were "the most stressed," Aldan said.

The group donned white overalls, a helmet, mask and safety goggles and then set about their business of demolishing 21 rooms with a hammer.

"That's got to be worth 15 years' therapy," Jorge, an Argentine living in Madrid for two years, told AFP afterwards.

The unemployed 26-year-old was a little reserved to begin with, letting on only that he felt "very stressed" amid issues such as "hair loss and stomach upsets."

But, hammer in hand, he quickly set about destroying the room, its bathroom and the television and cupboards for good measure.

"It was great," enthused Pablo, an IT worker aged 32, after undertaking an activity which allowed him to forget for a brief while "the bank, the lack of free time, and the home" he cannot afford as prices spiral in the city.

Participants had to warm up for the task by pummelling a punch ball dressed as an archetypal boss while yelling out the cause of their woes.

Jorge whipped on a pair of boxing gloves before laying into the punch ball and screaming: "Money!"

Another stressed soul, 40-year-old taxi driver Felix, shouted: "The M30," the generally packed ring road which surrounds Madrid and is often a nightmare for capital commuters.
Very cool and not bad publicity for the Hotel either. If given the chance, I would love to do something like this too -- I have seen events where for $5 you can take a swing at a car with a sledgehammer; it would be fun to do a whole room... Posted by DaveH at July 3, 2007 10:20 PM
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