John Metcalfe was CityLab’s Bay Area bureau chief, covering climate change and the science of cities.
Party people in Denmark built this house of holy brewskies from empty cans.
Feeling depressed, alone, aimlessly adrift in this meaningless world of ours? Then perhaps you need a pilgrimage to Denmark's newest house of worship, the Church of Beer, which is guaranteed to lift your spirits by actually putting spirits in you.
It may smell like the floor of a frat-house bathroom and attract more flies than a dead water buffalo, but for beer lovers this magnificent structure is worthy of praying in seven days a week. It was designed by the German architecture firm Umschichten for the Roskilde Festival, a huge music-and-culture fest near Copenhagen that this year featured Rihanna, Kris Kristofferson and everyone's favorite Icelandic crooner, Ásgeir Trausti. Like a true church, however, it really owed its existence to the parishioners – thousands upon thousands of partyheads who volunteered their empty cans for its holy walls.
There were apparently no hitches in the construction of the Church of Beer. As one man notes in the below footage, the way people lined up to help the lead builders rapidly erect the structure "reminds me of the Manson family." Once its doors swung open, the church provided a safe place for a variety of unconventional types of worship, like chugging beer and maybe passing out nostrils-first on the floor (OK, certain palaverous pastors can produce that effect, too).
To believe the festival's organizers, there were also exorcisms, "nude piles, drag-yoga [and] colorful parades!" Look, here are a couple of the devout:
The Roskilde Festival ended this weekend, and the Church of Beer will soon be melted into aluminum ingots at the recycling plant. Thankfully, this glorious footage exists to show future civilizations the glory of the Hopfather, the Spring Saison and the Holy Cow Milk Stout: