Saturday, October 7, 2017

Jammix, Social Fatigue

Jammix was good fun, and nice getting to see people, but also socially "tiring".  And perhaps not in the normal manner of being socially draining and in general wanting to shy away from people, but maybe something different, too.  I realized tonight as I was there, that the more I think about people at dance, the more depressing and unhappy thoughts start to come into my mind.  I was thinking about it some more and I think it is because dance is just such an exposing activity where everyone is really putting themselves out there.  I mean, that is great, and I think that is part of the reason why it's a good activity too, but a lot of the time, especially recently, when I am standing there or walking through the dance, I get filled with more negative thoughts than positive ones.

Is it wrong to judge someone based on their dancing?  So often, incredibly often now, I find myself judging people not based on their dance ability, but on their dance character.  It's rough because a lot of the time I feel like it really is an accurate reflection of who they are as a person, but sometimes it's unintentional and just because they don't know better.  But there are definitely people whom I dance with and I just get disheartened, not because they are a bad dancer, but because I feel something in their dance that shows a side of their character that I just dislike.  I've been dancing for quite some time now, so it's quite easy for me to pick apart someone's style.  Those leads that jerk you around -- do they really care about me as a person??  Those follows who go off on their own volition and overdo everything -- why does it feel like you are just snubbing me off??  It's not all bad though, of course.  There are people whom I really love dancing with now just because of the character of their dancing.  But for the rest, it's so easy for me to make these snap judgments.  I can't help it.  And I myself am not exempt from it either, as I know better than anyone that my flaws and weaknesses show through in my dancing as well. 

But it doesn't stop there, either.  Dance is also where I become acutely, sometimes painfully aware of gender roles in our community and society.  How much people fall into gender roles, not just in dance, but also in socialization.  And every time I go and interact with someone during those times, I feel my own biases too.  And I can't help thinking about how I interact with people differently based on their gender.  It makes me feel uncomfortable with myself sometimes.

And of course, everything else.  The cliques.  How the older dancers don't get any attention from the young kids.  How couples who are dating stick together and somehow become unapproachable.

Maybe it is easier if I just try to be aloof and lose myself in my own world.  I don't know, really.  Maybe I am just jaded.  Or maybe I just need to try and not think about it so much.

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