Have you done crazy things since you started dancing, or were you always like that? No matter your particular slant, it’s indisputable that some of the stuff we do is absolutely bonkers.
Going to a late night event as an adult with a job… on a Wednesday.
We all thought that one day, we’d grow out of the early-adulthood late-nights. Or, perhaps like me, it was never your shtick to begin with…
…Until you started dancing.
For every dancer, there’s at least a few times where we sacrifice a good night’s sleep for a mid-week event. Some of us regret it deeply, others make it a perpetual habit. Regardless, none of us thought it would be something we did when work starts at 9 a.m. the next morning.
Flying to another city for a 3-day vacation… and never leaving the hotel.
Who flies to another city – especially a foreign one – to sit in a hotel? Dancers!
Gone are the days of sight-seeing vacations. Dancers can fly thousands of miles to happily spend the weekend in a hotel. Sometimes, we don’t even see daylight or get maid service.
Thinking that an event starts “early” if the first scheduled session is before 11am.
I remember the first time I went to a Salsa congress. My mother thought I was lying when I said the first workshop was at 11 a.m. She was used to professional events, where the day starts at 8:30 a.m. and is over by 9 p.m.
Now, I’m experiencing the reverse. I see professional-developments advertising 7:30 a.m. breakfasts. At some events, that’s when I go to bed. I feel like these people must be mutants, even though these are technically the “normal” people. (Of course, we just call them ‘non-dancers’).
Of course, there was that one event where tech rehearsal was at 8 a.m. Sunday morning. What kind of sadistic organizer schedules tech rehearsal at 8 a.m. on the Sunday of an event???
Dividing the world into “dancers” and “non-dancers”.
When discussing a new person, what’s the first thing you say about them? For many dancers, the first description we give to others is whether the person is a “dancer” or a “non-dancer.”
Meeting a dancer friend for coffee?
Went on a date? With a non-dancer?
Bringing a friend to the social? Oh, they’re already a dancer?
You get the picture.
Dancing to a Justin Bieber remix… and loving it.
Baby, baby, baby…. oooooohhhhh….
Yeah. You know you could dance to that jam if you do Zouk, WCS, Hustle, or Sensual Bachata. If you dance a ‘traditional’ style, there’s probably at least one equivalent artist who is a ‘guilty dance pleasure’.
Is it too late now to say sorry?
Understanding that “Ballroom” isn’t an umbrella term for every dance.
I went WCS dancing at a nightclub with friends once. A bystander asked me if we were dancing Tango.
Outside of the dance world, partnered dancing seems to be generally referred to as ‘Ballroom’. For the ‘educated,’ it may further be divided into ‘Swing’, ‘Salsa/Latin’, and ‘Tango.” Forget even trying to explain Bachata, Zouk, WCS, or Kizomba.
Then, you become a dancer. Ballroom then specifically refers to the ‘Smooth’ dances, while Ballroom Latin refers to the Ballroom versions of ‘Latin’ dances. Swing isn’t just Lindy; it’s an umbrella term for a gazillion dances.
Kizomba and Zouk? How dare you call them ‘Latin’ (Just kidding… mostly).
Caring about the soles of your footwear.
I worked in a shoe store for 4 years. The only time I’ve ever heard non-dancers discuss the outer sole of a shoe is when buying winter boots.
For dancers, it’s different. If the sole isn’t suede, what is it? Does it spin? What’s the grip like? What kind of floor is it good for? Are these shoes that can be worn outside?
We care a lot about what is on the bottom of our shoes. We even specifically spend time caring for the bottoms of our shoes.
Discussing the quality of the floor.
Unless you’re buying a house, most people don’t really care about what the floor is made of. That’s why standard hotel ‘dance’floors are almost universally shitty.
Dancers? We want to know exactly what we’re dealing with.
Wood? Is it sprung? How ‘fast’ is it? Is it waxed?
Concrete? What are you thinking??
Carpet? Maybe as a last-resort when the real floor is full.
Tile? Are you trying to cause my joints immense pain?
The “perfect floor” is almost always the best gift you can give a dancer.
Spending hours on YouTube watching other people dance.
Let’s face it: the only people who spend time watching endless streams of dance videos are dancers. Otherwise, ‘a lot’ would be several million hits – not a few hundred thousand.
Reading this blog.
If you weren’t a dancer, there’s no way you would have read this far. Just sayin’.
Wow. This is so true. I didn’t know what I was signing up for but I am glad and happy to have dance in my life. It is kind of crazy, though. The dance world feels separate from the real world at times. I could never find dance events to go to before I started and now I can find all of them.
When you bring more than one pair of shoes in your bag .
Or travel with one pair of dance shoes in the hand luggage – in case the bag would get lost .
The amount of time you can spend without being on your phone.
Didn’t think I could function on such little sleep until I started dancing till 6am…then afterparty till 8…breakfast…classes. And that’s how an all nighter becomes a regular event
When you used to be a jeans&hoodie tomboy and now you own more shoes and fancy dresses than your fashionable roommate.
Yes!! This is me! Jeans and hoodies gave way to dresses with flippy skirts and head bands. And I love it <3
Clothing-avoiding wardrobe malfunctions.
Hygiene -which deodorants can hold yp to four hours of dancing.
….before social dancing, you’d never carry a bag with three pairs of shoes just to go out dancing! And at what point did any woman think a gown went with jazz flats! LOL
“Monkey bar shorts” in every color!
What are Monkey Bar shorts?
Dancers usually do some research on their time. Practice as often they can in order to master their craft just to be ready for the right partner. Then the magic happen. Such amazing feeling.
I can related to this article at so many level.
Thanks for sharing your thought with me. Much appreciated it!
Wax on the bottom of runners ?
We call the “spending hours watching YouTube” = DancePorn
And the getting obsessed with the floor type ‘floor porn’
Top 5 things
Cold water (not in Europe)
All true to the tee!! Especially about the floor. My non dancing friends would look at me all crazy when I complimented random floors and said they would be good to dance on.
I travel a lot for a living, but wherever I am, I always feel at home, and so blessed, when I find a place to dance.
Choosing “regular clothes” in the shop with the thoughts: “Can I dance in this? Will it be comfortable/stay in place?Will it spin nicely or look sexy (depending on the type of dance).” It has to be cute and comfy/practical at the same time and not too hot to dance in lol I wear the same autumn boots for a couple of years now as I would rather spend money on new dancing shoes lol Air Con is a big issue in London dance studios/parties so you after a while you just accept that the salsa social scene is hot and sweaty as part of it and if, miraculously, there is a good air con at the party – you never can’t stop raving about it the next day to your friends who missed the party lol
When you don’t want to leave for a long holiday because you will miss all the dancing events!
Looking for a girl in a club, who is dressed “comfortable” – with jeans, sports shoes or smth. like that – then she most probably came for dancing and knows how to. Before starting to dance – it was totally different “scan of environment”
Whenever you hear a new song you automatically categorize it ‘Danceable’ and ‘not Danceable’ (And which dance..)
When you bring four shirts, two pairs of dance shoes, wipes, deodorant, chocolate bars and peppermint chewing gums to a club so you can dance all night and not feel uncomfortable (and not make your dance partners feel uncomfortable) 😀
That I would be so close with my body to so many men and without sexual thoughts
That I would be able to give men an awesome dancefeeling just by dancing and being myself.
That I would plan my schedule around my dance nights
That I would see dancing as an important ingredient in a new lifepartner
I never realized how much dancing would affect my meals. Onions and garlic are now reserved for “special” days when I know I won’t be dancing.
omg that’s soooo true!! it almost never happens..!
When you hear background music in a store or elevator and decide what dance you would work best.
Never thought I would bring 6 beers to a party and drink only one.
If add also… clothes shopping is never the same. I find myself always checking what kind of material is the particular item I’m looking at made of. Does it breath, is it too hot of a material, couldi spin on it, would it slide and God forbid, fall off or rip it tear. Will it stand a fast salsa? Will it get caught in my shoe heels while dancing? Will I be dying of heat by the first song? Lol
I never buy a clothes item in which I cannot dance in.
How dare you conflate the American “smooth” styles with REAL ballroom dancing? LOL