Feeling The Rhythm (Or Not)

Scottish comedian Billy Connolly once did a sketch where he said that the only people on the planet that you can’t offend are middle aged white men.  This is probably a good job because, according to another comedic line, we seem to be the only demographic that has no rhythm.

Dancing isn’t one of my favourite past times.  I actively try to avoid it, unless it’s to Take That’s “Never Forget” at the end of the night in which case I’m there with bells on.  Well, not literally “with bells on”, that would be Morris Dancing and I doubt I could pull off the costume or the moves.

I know someone who dances only with the top half his body, leaving his feet firmly planted on the floor and moving in a motion not dissimilar to Baby Groot, but not quite so adorable.

I know someone else who only dances when he has drunk a lot.  We’re not talking about Dutch Courage here.  We’re talking about one more drop pushing him to being comatose.  His dancing is highly reminiscent of a dog dry humping someone’s leg.  Mainly because he is dry humping someone’s leg, anyone’s leg, or a table leg which is enough to ruin anyone’s pole dancing fantasy for life.

Quite a few studies have been done, not in to why white men can’t dance directly, but in to why some people dance more rhythmically to music than others.  Some had linked it to body metrics and physiology.  (That reminds of the time when a football team I was playing against appealed for a foul throw in against me.  The referee said it wasn’t a foul, it just looked awkward.  I still assume, to this day, he was talking about the throw in and not me in general.)

None of these studies really got anywhere let alone find causal link but they’re a damned sight better for me to read about than it being just a mental thing.

Jessica Phillips-Silver and Laurel Trainor did a study in 2005 where mothers bounced babies (presumably their own) to particular rhythms and found that different rhythms altered the infant’s perception.  So it’s not body size, but body movement.

Back to me, then.  I’ve long complained that dance music doesn’t do it for me – I just don’t feel it, plus the fact it rarely has a portion in to which I can get out my air guitar.  This 2005 study could begin to back up my assertion that I’m probably a great dancer, but I just need to find the right music.  Until then, I may continue to take offence on the odd occasion I do start tapping my foot.

Been on this path of life for so long
Feel I’ve walked a thousand miles
Sometimes strolled hand in hand with love
Everybody’s been there
With danger on my mind I would stay on the line of hope
I knew I could make it
Once I knew the boundaries I looked into the clouds and saw
My face in the moonlight
Just then I realised what a fool I could be
Just cause I look so high I don’t have to see me
Finding a paradise wasn’t easy but still
There’s a road going down the other side of this hill

Never forget where you’ve come here from
Never pretend that it’s all real
Someday soon this will be someone else’s dream

Been safe from the arms of disappointment for so long
Feel each day we’ve come too far
Yet each day seems to make much more
Sure is good to be here
I understand the meaning of “I can’t explain this feeling”
Now it feels so unreal
At night I see the hand that reminds me of the stand I make
The fact of reality

Never forget where you’ve come here from
Never pretend that it’s all real
Someday soon this will be someone else’s dream

We’ve come so far and we’ve reached so high
And we’ve looked each day and night in the eye
And we’re still so young and we hope for more
But remember this
We’re not invincible, we’re not invincible – No
We’re only people, we’re only people
Hey we’re not invincible, we’re not invincible
So again I’ll tell you

Never forget where you’ve come here from
Never pretend that it’s all real
Someday soon this will be someone else’s dream

Never Forget by Take That


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