The Dad Dancer According to evolutionary science, “dad dancing”, as performed by dads and older males in their forties upwards, “unconsciously repels” young women, leaving the romantic opportunities clear for younger, more fertile men. It would be cruel to point that out to the Dad Dancer. Leave him as he gyrates away, four Rum and Cokes under his straining belt, remembering the time he saw Rod Stewart in the ’80s.
The Synchronised Swimmer Almost a subset of the Dad Dancer, the Synchronised Swimmer flails his arms about in a thrashing motion, perhaps paddling for the forgotten shores of his youth. He does this because he literally has no other moves.
The “It Rubs The Lotion On Its Skin Or Else It Gets The Hose Again” Desperado From Silence Of The Lambs Like serial killer Buffalo Bill in that acclaimed movie, this dance is deeply confusing and deeply scary. Just back away and never look back.
The Ageing Headbanger Seen as recently as my last Nick Cave concert, the Ageing Headbanger suddenly stands up in front of you to treat you to a megamix of unco-ordinated moves.
Bizarrely, he will often add freestyle rap and disco moves to his staccato headbanging, his body furiously gyrating away in his studded leather jacket (so edgy! so ’80s!) and groaning leather pants. And no, he won’t sit down, no matter how many times a “narc” like you politely asks him to.
The Stevie Wonder This is my favourite kind of dancer. They remain firmly in their chairs, eyes closed and smile on their faces, their heads gently weaving back and forth to the music. I was charmed by a balding, ageing Stevie Wonder type at the Cave concert – why can’t I enjoy the music as much as him, I thought – only for him to morph into a full-on Synchronised Swimmer to the amusement of all.
The Peter Garrett Seeing the former Midnight Oil frontman dance is like nothing else on Earth. He does everything from jazz hands to stamping out imaginary fires, his long limbs flailing around the stage as if he’s suffering a seizure. And yet, somehow he can pull it off because he’s PETER GARRETT.
Keep your loved ones close and that drink you lined up for 20 minutes for even closer if someone attempts to pull off this whirling dervish (there’s always one).
The Goth Jellyfish Like the creature it imitates, The Goth Jellyfish is a harmless, gentle creature, content to simply sway side to side with the music. The world would be a better place if there were more Goth Jellyfish.
The Drummer Ever seen Whiplash? Picture Miles Teller beating invisible drums spurred on by the J.K. Simmons in his head. Fortunately The Drummer usually gives up after a while because there is no J.K. Simmons traumatising him right there in person (thank God).
The Irish Dancer In a nod to both Irish dancing and the tight space constraints of modern arenas, this chap or chapess will dance on the spot with their arms firmly rooted to their sides. The correct response is to point at them and say loudly “look at Michael Flatley, Lord of the Dance over there”.
The Sexy Person With Perfectly Co-Ordinated Dance Moves If you’re like me and attending a medley of nostalgia acts, cultural icons past their prime and pop stars trying to frantically top up their superannuation before they become uncommercial and/or retire, you won’t be seeing to many of these dancers.
Sexy dancing is usually the province of the young (see “Dad Dancer” above) … and they either can’t afford (“$200 to see Barbra Streisand? Why?”) or aren’t interested (“I thought John Farnham was dead”) in the heroes of your youth.
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