I love to dance.
I mean, I can’t dance. I’m currently rehearsing for an amateur performance of the musical Cats. Last year we put on Oklahoma, and I got a main part. This year, I’m firmly in the background. I’m playing Tantomile, and even if you’ve seen Cats before you probably have no idea who that is, and that’s because I have no dance training whatsoever. My body is more flexible than the average person, which is great for party tricks but makes me pretty uncoordinated. It also takes me far too long to learn choreography.
But I love to dance, in my own uncoordinated way. Today’s Meditation, by Sarah Gould, is about the kind of dancing that comes from a pure desire to move your body. Even with so few colours and pixels, you can pick out the instruments: brass, percussion, strings. They are accompanied by green pulsing musical notes. Play this one with the volume turned up.
There are three scenes that you can dance your way into, but once I’d seen them all I found myself instinctively alternating my key-tapping fingers, not to get anywhere in particular, but just to move. Your character will move their arms and legs even if you don’t press anything at all.
It made me think of Crypt of the NecroDancer, which I watched someone play over the weekend and which is just a genius idea for a game.
But Sarah’s story about being scared about dancing in front of other people made me think of something that crosses my mind every Friday and Saturday night, when the town I live in becomes a playground for people who rely on alcohol to lift their inhibitions. Whenever their drunken singing soars through my window I resent them, because I love to sing but I am (perennially) sober, and society would not allow me to wander the streets belting my favourite songs. It sucks that we are expected to put up with certain behaviours from people because they’ve chosen to drink, but perhaps it sucks more that we live in a world in which many people would never feel able to sing – or dance – in public otherwise.