Hammer time

by Salvador Nito Wong


Ever felt so angry that you could bust a window? At CarSmash Amsterdam, you pay to release your rage.

The dark clouds above announce the upcoming rainfall. There is an electric charge in the air. Down in a scrapyard, located in Vijfhuizen, another storm is forming. However, instead of rain and wind, it is made up of glass shards and broken metal. This is CarSmash Amsterdam, a company that allows people to legally destroy cars as a way of anger and stress relief.

Just like the weapon of choice for the Nordic God of Thunder, a hammer seems appropriate for the task of wrecking the hatchback. In those moments, there is only you, the car and pure adrenaline. With each blow, energy flows through the metal and gets released into an explosion of glass. The rumble of the collisions fills the air, echoing through the piles of obliterated cars in the back.

One on top of another, the remains of salvaged vehicles decorate the place. The scene is grim. The shade of the cars’ paint has lost its vibrancy with time. The only bright colors come from the orange and blue jumpsuits worn by the hitmen. It is more than a motor cemetery, it is an execution chamber where automobiles come to perish. The cause of death: raw human strength.

Although people have the opportunity to go into a complete frenzy, everything is done with a sense of safety. CarSmash provides thick gloves and protective eyewear, and there is an instructor who guides the visitors through the event. After that is done, people pick their weapon and unleash their power. It is invigorating; rage has never felt so good.