Four aspiring VIP members sat quietly sipping their beverages as the nurse Laia began preparing the surgical materials. Like a scene from a sci-fi movie, latex gloves and syringes were laid out on the table as the DJ played loud dance tunes that made my heart thump, or was it just fear?
The Baja Beach Club in Barcelona, Spain, allows its VIP guests the opportunity to have a syringe-injected microchip implanted in their upper arms that gives them exclusive access to the club’s VIP lounges and acts as a debit account for their cocktails and, we imagine, um, other services. The chip – a 1.3mm-by-1mm glass capsule the size of a large piece of rice – is the same kind of Radio Frequency Identification device that is commonly implanted into animals. Around the pool, VIPs find the almost imperceptible cystlike lump under the skin a godsend, allowing liberal access to their alcoholism when bikinis and Speedos provide no pockets for cash or credit cards. Science producer Simon Morton reports on nightlife’s latest convenience first hand (or arm) for BBC News. (t/y JJ Smiley)