La Tomatina is a Spanish festival where tourists throw tomatoes at each other and seemingly have a great time. It looks fun and somehow culturally significant, which explains why Melbourne tried to recreate it at the Flemington Racecourse on Saturday. But somehow Melbourne’s version became a tomato bloodbath featuring injuries and people mistaking it for Stereosonic with food waste.
When I arrived the tomatoes were in a huge rotting pile and people hadn’t started flinging them yet. The crowd, dressed in brightly-colored costumes that had nothing to do with anything, ground against each other while a DJ played club bangers. At first I thought the heavy house soundtrack was out of place for a food event, but the advertising girls in tight shorts assured me everything was fine.