There is a fine line between dancing appropriately and looking like you’ve wandered haphazardly into a swarm of bees.
Indeed, it’s a never-ending pursuit for some to discover and perfect dance moves that won’t have them laughed off the dance floor, but one at which many people fail.
Which is why I have laughed in the face of convention and developed my own style of severely ironic dancing, one that is so bad it cannot possibly be mistaken for a well-intentioned effort.
Mine is more of a hectic flailing than it is an actual dance style but it beats the pants off those proponents of the lacklustre ‘bob’ style, which is as the name suggests.
Those who do the bob in a club or dance floor, a gentle dip here and there, are normally quite boring people and probably grow horse radishes as an amiable pastime.
Then there are the bumpers and the grinders, people who believe resolutely in the power of their bootie to affect the course of current world events, self-determination in non-sovereign states and the general mood of any evening out.
Bumpers and grinders thrust their hips with reckless abandon and will one day suffer terrible osteoporosis for their sins.
Groovers are a whole new breed and seem apparently blissfully unaware of the music around them, moving independently to their own horrific beat.
Groovers use their arms a lot and like clicking intermittently, because this is somehow still acceptable 30 years after finger snaps hit their peak during a fit of absentmindedness across a whole decade.
Let it also be said, while we’re on the subject, that the ‘shimmy’ is never, ever appropriate and might have gone the way of the Dodo if it weren’t for a dedicated band of gobshites.
Look, no one is saying this is easy to get right, but there are a few tell-tale signs that let you know if your dancing hits the mark.
For example, take cues from those around you. If they are clutching their stomachs and howling in pain crying out ‘make it stop’ then try tweaking your style. Better still, try doing it in a dark room where no one will ever see you.
Or do what I do and satirise all of the ‘no-no’s I have just outlined here with your own caricature of unending horror.
Trust me, people will absolutely understand that what you are doing is actually a supremely clever, self-referencing critique of the dance culture of a generation.
They will certainly not mistake you for one of the atrocious rhythm abusers who normally populate the dance floor.
What we’re aiming for in our dance satire is unmitigated trash.
It needs to look like the dance equivalent of a thousand, colourful, throw cushions tossed into the air.