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I Might as Well Dance

A song from the time period when I should have been a teenager.

My wife is trying to put together a group of people to go dancing on Friday night. There is a club where they play ‘80’s music on Fridays, and if there is a musical era for my generation, that would be it. (Never mind that I generally listen to music either pre- or post-eighties.) If the DJ at this club does his or her job correctly, I will be transported back to an era of big hair, bad clothes, strange videos, and synthesizers blaring in the night.

Before I graduated from college, I generally avoided dancing whenever the opportunity presented itself. This was partly the result of my inherent whiteness. I also lacked any proper training in dancing techniques, making my ethnic lack of rhythm more difficult to hide. Much of my reluctance, however, was more about self-consciousness than lack of dancing skill. Many of my dancing friends, after all, were not exactly God’s gift to choreography. They seemed less concerned, however, with the possibility of making an ass of themselves. As time has passed, I have become more like those dancing maniacs throwing caution and self-respect to the wind. Part of this is a result of aging. For some reason, the older that you get, the less you tend to worry about what others think of you. It may be a part of the natural process of becoming old and, therefore, uncool. Standing in front of people talking all day also tends to wipe away inhibitions. Screwing up on occasion is unavoidable, and you realize that looking stupid is not a big deal.

I have also learned over time that the opinions of most people are not worth very much. And even more importantly, most people are not paying much attention to me anyway. They are generally too busy thinking about themselves and the details of their lives to notice me for any significant amount of time. And if a person does on occasion think about me or anyone else, he or she is often, like everyone else, self-consciously worrying about the opinions of others. So if the opinions of others have little impact on me, and if they are probably too busy to notice me anyway, I may as well get out and dance. Once I learned to ignore my inhibitions and give in to this urge, I found that it was actually pretty fun. I have always loved music, so if I relax and let myself go, dancing actually comes (somewhat) naturally. Believe it or not, I have actually been complimented a few times for my “skills.” For a semi-self-conscious, uptight, white boy, I’m apparently not too bad.


  1. I work until 9:10 p.m. on Friday nights so I doubt I could make it. However, I like to think that this white boy can dance no matter what my fiancee says.

  2. Someday, I too will dance, casting away the fear of doing it wrong...
    and I'll make sure that someday is somewhere around the corner.

  3. I don't think that there is any such thing as dancing correctly. So go out there and make it happen, baby.


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