That Was Awkward: Dance Like Nobody’s (Everybody’s?) Watching


Lets talk about social dancing. This might be my most embarrassing topic yet simply because, despite my love hexagon with nachos, ice cream, Ollie’s, Easy Mac, and Ritz Bits, as well as my tendency to trip over my own feet when walking down the sidewalk, I am actually a dance major. Therefore, admitting my incompetence on the dance floor seemingly suggests my failure as a college student. However, this is absolute bollocks because ballet and modern training does not lend any agency when trapped on a crowded dance floor full of drunk and horny twentysomethings listening to extremely loud house music. One of the most annoying and frequent comments I receive in such atmospheres is “hey dance major, show me some moves!” Um, sure…get me a pair of stretchy pants and brace yourself for a weird artsy demonstration full of movement symbolism. Otherwise, get off my case man. I am not and will not ever be one of those girls who effortlessly flows to the music at a club, somehow making her hip gyrations appear sexy rather than uncomfortable and slightly hazardous.

Now, my dear followers, I sincerely hope you have all seen the movie Hitch due to the unfortunate fact that it is one of our generation’s classics (oh dwindling American pop-culture). Anyway, I greatly resemble the film’s supporting character, Albert, on the dance floor. However, instead of Albert’s slightly overweight and roundish figure, my body consists of no torso whatsoever and freakishly long legs and arms. So essentially picture Albert’s dance moves on a monkey or a giant daddy long legs. That’s me on the dance floor. I may not use his distinct moves such as “starting the fire”, “making pizza”, or “throwing away the Q-tip”, however, my method of self-expression is equally peculiar and eccentric. My main problem with social dancing is figuring out what to do with my arms. There is nothing more frustrating than being told to just relax and get into the vibe, because if I turned off my thoughts and allowed the music to take over my body, I would look like a bouncing baboon flailing my arms in a Bernie-esque manner. I normally try to keep a drink in my hand at all times, even if I don’t actually drink it. This generally gets rid of the problem of what to do with my arms. However, if my cup is too full, this solution could cause a new spillage problem. So now I’m awkwardly thrusting my body around the dance floor with a giant stain on my shirt while holding an empty cup.

Another problem I have with social dancing is singing along to the music. We all know how annoying it is when some new Kanye or Icona Pop song comes on and all of a sudden every girl in the club shrieks “OH EM GEE THIS IS MY JAM!” and belts every word to the song while shaking her hips to the beat. However, sometimes I find myself dancing with a group of girls and realizing that I’m the only person who doesn’t know the words to the song. As much as I hate being one of those girls who sings every word, I also hate being the only person in the group not singing every word and feeling awkward for having never heard the song before. This is truly a lose-lose situation and leaves me looking like a dud every time.

 The worst part about all of this is that I love social dancing; I’m just bad at it. Whenever I’m alone or with close friends in my suite and there’s music playing, I have no problem busting a move and giving it all I’ve got. I just know that if I want to be socially accepted I have to dial it back in public, or I risk becoming the weird best friend flailing her arms and jumping from one foot to the other all alone while all of her friends have found cute guys to dance with. In any case, I almost always wake up the morning after a night on the town, look back on my previous night’s struggles on the dance floor, and sigh while thinking to myself: That w