Recently, I went out dancing with some friends. Looking around at the crowd bouncing and swaying to the beat, I realized that no matter what club you go to, there are certain types of dancers that you’re always going to see. Like the true nerd that I am, I went home and wrote them all down. Check out my list after the jump, feel free to add any other types in the comment section, and most importantly, tell us which category you fit into (I’m a mix of #2, #6, and #7 without the ecstasy)…
1. The Person Who Actually Knows How To Dance And Is Making Everyone Else Look Bad. No matter how grungy the club or how terrible the DJ, there’s always one person out in the middle of the dance floor who looks like a scene out of a “Step Up” movie. They might be naturally gifted, they might have taken 15 years of lyrical jazz classes–maybe both–but as entertaining as they are to watch, they’re the nightclub equivalent of the nerd who ruins the curve on a brutal physics final: ultimately we all resent them.
2. The Ironic Dancer. This person doesn’t have much confidence in their earnest dancing abilities so they’ve carved out a niche for themselves as a sort of “club clown.” They might do the sprinkler or the Macarena hoping for a laugh, but inside they wish they could effortlessly sway their hips to the beat like their friends. At the end of the night they’ll bid their crew adieu and slow dance with themselves to “Tears of a Clown.”
3. The Hot Guy Who Sucks At Dancing But No One Has The Heart To Tell Him. He looks like Channing Tatum, but he dances like Elaine Benes. I’m sure as hell not going to tell him. Are you?
4. The Awkward Guy Who’s Trying Not To Look Uncomfortable. Unlike the Hot Elaine Benes Guy, this dude knows he can’t dance, but for the sake of his friends or his girlfriend or his pride, he’s making a half-hearted attempt (with a high risk of intermittent fist pumping). In general this category accounts for about 60% of the clientele at any given nightclub.
5. The Couple Who Might Be Having Sex On The Dance Floor. Dancing at a crowded club can be kind of stressful–it’s hot and sweaty and people are throwing elbows–so when you spot an empty corner of the dance floor, it’s tempting to book it over there and claim it as your own. Beware though, because that corner’s empty for a reason. There’s either a suspicious substance on the floor, or there’s an amorous couple humping each other against the mirror, and there will soon be a suspicious substance on the floor.
6. The Bachelorette Party. Composed of anywhere from 5 to 20 women, once this group hits the dance floor, every member merges into one feathered, sequined organism that gyrates to the beat in unison and screams “This is our sooooong!” about every song. Best to steer clear.
7. The Person Who’s Dancing To Their Own Drummer. This person is alone, eyes closed, twisting and writhing to a rhythm that no one else can hear. I’m guessing that rhythm is called “ecstasy,” but I can’t be sure.
8. The Aggressive Song Requester. Apparently this person does not own an iPod or have access to a radio, because their one goal in going to a club is to dance right next to the DJ booth, screaming out requests for a particular song over and over and over. The thing that’s weird about it is these people are never requesting, like, an obscure Wu-Tang B-side; they always want to hear the most popular dance track of the moment. “Play ‘Starships’! Play ‘Starshiiiiiiiips’!” Dude, wait 10 minutes. “Starships” will be on the playlist, and it has nothing to do with you.
9. The “Look! We’re Lesbians! Except Not Really!” Freak-dancing with your female friends used to be a pretty surefire way to grab attention at a crowded club. Then “I Kissed A Girl” came out and upped the ante. Now you’ve gotta engage in some pretty serious girl-on-girl PDA to get noticed, but there are always at least a few women prepared to rise to the challenge.
10. The Roving Grinder. Ah yes, everyone’s favorite club attendee. This guy roams around the dance floor, casually bobbing his head to the music in between grinding on random women. It is unclear whether his goal is simply to set a personal grinding record, or if he’s actually a misguided romantic hoping that someday one of his victims will turn around, look into his vacant eyes and say, “I love when strange men rub their penises on my back! Let’s start a relationship.”
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