Smash-therapy in Argentina's Break Club

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Marco Werman: Did I already mention that the Red Sox are World Champions? Sorry, we Bostonians are a bit baseball crazy today. Not crazy enough, mind you, to open a club where you encourage members to smash stuff with a baseball bat, but such a club actually does exist in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I'm not kidding. It's called the Break Club and the BBC's Ignacio de los Reyes went there to check it out. Ignacio de los Reyes: I met a couple of customers who worked in call centers or worked on IT support. They were so happy to smash, especially the keyboards and the screen. These kinds of jobs where you have so much stress dealing with angry customers. Well, this was their own revenge with the computer. Werman: So call centers and IT support, what other kinds of people are showing up to smash things? Reyes: So a lot of people work in creative jobs, like people work in media where you have to deal with deadlines. It's like you feel your brain is going to explode, well this is the place to go. Also, a lot of people work in advertising, especially people who work in this kind of jobs where you've already tried going to the gym, you've already tried therapy and it's okay, it's great place to release adrenalin and endorphins, but sometimes they need something else...well, this is the place for them. Werman: I've also heard, Ignacio, that there are more women showing up than men. Reyes: Yeah, yeah, that's absolutely right. Actually, 85% of the clients in this Break Club in Argentina are women. Werman: Why is that? Reyes: Well, Guido Dodero, the creator of this club told me that because Argentina is still quite a macho country, women still feel like they need to assume certain roles in society that they have to stay in this particular roles. And every now and then they need to release all that tension. And while this is the place where they can be themselves, they can be angry with the world and nobody is going to judge that, that's why it's so successful, especially among young women. But also there was this lady in her 70s who actually went there, decided if women in their 30s and 40s have to deal with a lot of problems, what she says is, "Well, imagine what I've been through all of that and I'm in my 70s, so I have twice the problems that you have, so this is my turn to break and smash everything up." Werman: Yeah, go for it, granny. Take a bat and crack it all up. So this man you mentioned that started Break Club, does he collect money from the smashers? Reyes: He earns money by two ways. You can either pay for the stuff you break and he provides whatever you like, like for instance, if you feel like smashing a TV screen, well you can either take your own old TV screen to smash it or you can ask for it. Werman: Well, you can see Ignacio's video of the Break Club at pri.org, which means that Ignacio, your camera didn't get smashed because we've got the video to prove it. The BBC's Ignacio de los Reyes in Buenos Aires, thanks a lot. Reyes: Thank you so much.