I have never really been able to dance. Not in the way that I think dancing should be. But I love to dance so friggin much. Over the years, there have been many different forms of dancing in my life; generally based on my goal for that night. Let me talk you through my dancing/partying journey.
Dancing was for being foolish. Who remebers the cha cha slide? Who remebers the Macarena? I do. I still remember every single move. We used to dance so hard when we were kids; arms flailing, legs kicking, hair not swaying due to the glitter spray you coated it in, no makeup going shiny on your face and no beating toes from heels that were squeezing too hard. It was wonderful.
There were usually cakes, non alcoholic punch bowls, cocktail sausages, cubes of cheese on sticks (actually who the hell decided we needed sticks to eat cheese?), banners, balloons, confetti, mums and dads watching intently. Their little one was so grown up.
This is when things started going downhill. House parties, free house, empties, rager, sesh, whatever you call them. When your parents left you in the house, assuming no wrong doing would be taking place and when you proceeded to have too many people in your very clean house with far too many sticky alcopops. Blue WKD I’m looking at you.
Those parties brought on a whole new attitude. Gone were the cocktail sausages, replaced with bottles upon bottles of mixers, cheap spirits and usually a hefty amount of 3l cider bottles. Lots of low cut tops and no tights. Lots of fake tan, lots of lines in your fake tan from your friend who spilt glens vodka all over you. It’s happened the best of us.
You would move between the living room, hallway and kitchen generally. Different groups of people occupy each room. Sometimes arch enemies occupying each room. I was a floater, ever the social butterfly I would go between them all, determined to make everyone friends. Man, I must have been a pain in the fucking ass. We used to drink cheap spirits from the bottle, dancing in the middle of the living floor to Kelly Rolland, a pile of New Look heels discarded in a pile on the floor.
Being a total goodie two shoes, and having a very limited selection of clubs in my hometown, moving out to the big city was my initiation to the world of clubs. Oh clubs. And pres. That was new to me too. Buying whatever was on offer, mixing it into a big mixing bowl and drinking it until you couldn’t see two feet in front of you. When you were suitably lubricated, it was only then you make the decision to go out into the mindfield that is a nightclub.
What time did you go to clubs? We never went before 1am. If you went before then, it was only because you were a looser. Or at least that’s what me and my new found gal pals thought. Until we had a break through. Most clubs have free entry before 12pm, after which the price rockets to roughly 7 quid. We decided to go to the club at 11pm. Stay with me… We would go to the club at 11pm, go in, get the all important stamp on your hand, then leave. Then, when we wanted to dance at 2am we would totter back, and waltz straight in. No queues for us. We scored.
Clubs are weird places. They are so, so loud. Dark. Smelly. Instantly give an animalistic were only here to fuck vibe, and generally are filled with two kinds of people. People who genuinely want to have a dance, and those who would never dream of dancing and are there purely to pay too much for drinks and not being able to hear their pals talking. I was always the former.
I have never, ever pulled in a club. It’s a total mystery to me. I tried. Oh man I tried so hard. I tried the sexy dance. And when Crank That came on, I was a slut drop queen. But I couldn’t hear anything. I have extremely bad hearing, and if anyone tried to talk to me I would wave my hands in a ‘I can’t fucking hear you’ motion. We would then ensue in a dance of whispering while still trying to move your hips in a way that they guy by the bar might think your ass looked good. What a fucking shitshow.
Thank goodness I made it out the other side; to this stage. I have a super hot boyfriend, and although I’m pretty sure he would find my salsa worthy hip dancing sexy, I just don’t need to do it anymore. I don’t need to wear stupidly uncomfortable clothing in a bid to attract men, or show off to my fellow gals. Now, I wear jeans, trainers, demand we only go to dive bars where I will be left alone, and dance to my hearts content. I was out at an Aberdeen club called Exodus last weekend. I hadn’t been there in about 4 years. It wasn’t the kind of place that was deemed glamorous enough to justify our body con dresses and fake eyelashes.
It was bloody wonderful. I have never danced so happily. There is photographic evidence of this, which I will not share, but it was wonderful. I’m sure Mr K would find me the sexiest woman alive if he had only witnessed my moshing style head moves, threatening to whip all 4 dance floor occupants with my hair.
I wish I could go back and tell younger me to ditch the heels. You will only wear them once or twice in your twenties because they are the fucking devil. You shouldn’t care about fake eyelashes, they’re shit anyway. It’s ok to only shave the bits of you that will come into contact with people, or to not shave your legs at all (refer to jean wearing). Wear jeans all the time and be comfortable all the time. Nothing is worth feeling awkward and uncomfortable. You will then feel like a smug arse when you see girls tottering down cobbled streets in tiny skirts and stilletoes whilst you glide, run, kart wheel or dance your way past them, trust me.
There have been some spectacular moves, some tumbles, a couple sprained ankles, and a lot of photos in my time. But for me, it’s all part and parcel of realising what actually counts.
And for me? Dancing is important. Trainers are important. And not giving a fuck is above all.