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How to dance at a club - Practicalities when Clubbing

Second in the ‘How to dance at a club’ series is ‘Practicalities when Clubbing’. Despite it’s general feeling of impulsiveness, going clubbing -well, successfully anyway- requires a wee bit of planning, without it you can find yourself in a lot of pain, barred from venues, very thirsty, drugged, sexually frustrated or simply feeling quite sorry for yourself from overheating.

  • Step 1, Dress appropriately: Otherwise known as ‘Why leather pants aren’t the best idea’.

I’m not talking about dressing to your skin tone or something daft like why dark blue is better than black for shoes. No, I’m talking about basic physics. It goes like this:

Enclosed space + body heat (x increased metabolism from dancing) + increased hormone levels + diuretic substances = VERY HOT

Yes, clubbing is hot (and not just in the colloquial sense), therefore you need to dress appropriately. This is why most clubbing patrons wear very little clothing, although I imagine the sex appeal helps too. But trust me, fully clothed people can look pretty damn sexy too.

*Ahem!* Here are some handy hints for apparel:

  1. Wear cotton instead of synthetics. These allow better air flow and moisture release, meaning you can sweat and have it cooled off. Synthetics tend to trap the moisture in, stopping the sweat doing it’s heat exchange thing and cooling you down. As your body isn’t the brightest candle on the chandelier, it tries to fix the lack of cooling by sweating more, meaning you get very dehydrated and overheated - while swimming in your own secretions. 
  2. Leather is also not the most permeable substances, and it chafes. So unless you are either wearing very little of it or are going to a ice bar, I suggest regulating it to the accessories department. 
  3. Don’t wear something that will show sweat stains, these are not sexy or particularly photogenic. Colours like greys, whites or reds are particularly bad.
  4. For the ladies, some gents, and those who reject gender binaries and substitute their own!: Unless you have A-cups (For which I am jealous, being a F-cup), or possibly even B-cups, for whatever higher power’s sake Wear a goddamn bra! The more you don’t wear a bra, the more your skin stretches from the weight of your bosom. This is why your Grandmother can cheerfully do the actions to the "Do your boobs hang low, do they wobble to and fro? Can you tie them in a knot, can you tie them in a bow?" song. If your boobs already dangle, then wearing a good bra will make them look perky again and stop them from hitting your dance partners in the face when you jump up and down. Keep that for the bedroom
  5. For the lads, and anyone else with a block and tackle, don’t wear boxers. There is nothing more off putting than a sweaty peek-a-boo ball (Or worse) hanging out your trousers. As with boobs, a good pair of briefs will allow good airflow and stop any painful bouncing. Remember, if they are flying about then they are more likely to be kicked by another enthusiastic party-goer. *Insert cringe here*
  6. Consider the dangers of jewelery that flies about too, it’s not fun to have a lump of pewter in the eye.
  7. Shoes. If you are willing to do repeated jumping jacks in them, then they’re good. Otherwise, no. Also keep in mind that they will be trodden on. A lot.
  8. If you choose to wear a short skirt, you will be groped in inappropriate places. While I don’t think it’s particularly right to do this, people do it anyway. Again, beware thigh chafing.
  • Make up: Be it stage or discreet, sweat is not your friend.

If you choose to wear make up when clubbing, keep in mind that it will be partially washed off by your sweat. You may want to wear water-resistant cosmetics (Or as they advertise them ‘Water-proof’) and retouch it whenever you go to the loo. If you feel uncomfortable doing this in front of other people then try using the disabled toilets, they often have a separate sink and mirror to the rest of the room. If the place you go doesn’t have disabled toilets, then make sure to pack a small mirror with your make-up, or you can even use your cellphone’s blank screen or inner camera in a pinch.

As the saying goes “Glitter is the herpes of craft materials”. If you chose to wear it (and who can resist the shiny?) then be aware that it will go everywhere. Even if you don’t wear it personally, chances are that fellow patrons of the establishment will be. Basically, expect to come out of a club with some level of glitter.

  • What to pack: Keep your limits, and needs, in mind.

There’s a fine line between being prepared, and being over-laden. You’ll be toting this stuff around all night, so watch the weight of stuff you’re carrying. Here is what I suggest carrying:

  1. Most clubs have a entrance fee, so you’ll need money. Especially if you want to buy drinks. Those usually cost at least double the price of usual retail value, you have been warned.
  2. Clubs -should- check I.D., so have a (legal) one ready. This is also good for teh drinkies.
  3. You’ll need your house keys. Nothing worse than coming back knacked from dancing than to find yourself locked out from your shower and bed. Same goes if you’re driving.
  4. Taxi card. Some taxi’s do coupons that you can use for when you don’t want to carry too much money, other people suggest having a ‘Taxi Stash’ at home to pay for emergency taxis. Either way, you’ll need a number to call.
  5. A pen, one that writes well on skin and is hard to wash off. This is good for writing phone numbers, the address home on drunken friends taking a taxi, names for when you can’t hear and doodling on past out friends.
  6. Condoms. Don’t keep these in your wallet, that causes them to expire quicker (a combination of heat and constant wear from opening and closing the wallet). Carry them even if you aren’t personally sexually active or don’t use them, friends might need them and they’re good carry-alls in survival situations too.
  7. Painkillers. Headaches can hit at the most inopportune moments, especially when you’re in a environment of loud music, flashing lights and dehydrating situations. Basic Paracetamol (Also known by the brand names Panadol, Atasol, Dafalgan, Efferalgan, and Tylenol) is good, I would suggest the covered ones or ‘caplets’ because they are easier to swallow and don’t taste as foul.
  8. Some sort of carrying device. Choose something that has sealed pockets to make it harder to drop items or have them stolen. Should be comfortable to carry but not too eye-catching. I wouldn’t suggest anything by big brands as this marks you as someone with money, and therefore good prey for thieves.

You can also carry any makeup you are wearing (for touch-ups), a cellphone, rape whistle (Although shouting 'FIRE!' tends to get more attention), or -if you’re like me- a full survival pack with stocked first aid kit. If you are one who gets full-on pissed (drunk) often I would also recommend a slip with your name, address and any medical issues on it.

  • What -not- to pack: It’s amazing how tetchy people get about these things.

Clubs have rules, and many of them you will know quite well. However daft they might seem though, you really should follow them otherwise you may get booted out or even have a nice free police ride to the station.

  1. Knives, not really on. This one irritates me, as I usually carry one for casual use of opening packages, cutting apples or slicing duct tape, as well as part of my survival kit. However, I fully understand that most people are not as mature with them and do stupid things like threatening people with them.
  2. Drugs, Party pills, illegal paraphernalia, whatever you want to call them, they’re bad news. Don’t accept any while you’re clubbing either, dosages aren’t measured, ingredients can be anything, bad reactions abound and you never know what you’ll end up doing while on them. If you have to do drugs, then do them in a safe environment, not a club.
  3. Unneeded electrical products. Mp3 players, cameras, Dictaphones, whatever. If you don’t need them and still bring them then you are just increasing the chances of getting them stolen or being mugged.
  4. Water bottles. Yes, this seems a big out of place, but most venues ban them. This is mostly due to people sneaking in alcohol in them, but also because they want to make more money by making you buy their overpriced products. Some countries have laws stating that bars must supply free water to any patron who asks, which I think is a great idea.
  5. Alcohol. Again, they want money, and you bringing in your own alcohol is stopping that.
  6. Intoxication. Not something you can pack, but you shouldn’t bring it anyway. Clubs will turn away anyone who is already intoxicated from the premises. If you see a bouncer letting in people who are already pissed then I suggest not going into that club.
  • Final words of wisdom: Probably on par with teaching your Grandmother how to suck eggs, but I’m going to state them anyway.

Watch your drinks, unless it’s been opened by bar staff in front of you, then don’t accept it. They can be spiked as quickly as a single pass of a hand, so never leave your drinks unattended. Bottled drinks are easier to guard than open cups, but have a friend be aware what to do if you do seem to be overly intoxicated for what you’ve consumed. If you do think a drink has been spiked, then alert the bar staff. They will keep a eye out and replace any free-for-all drink sources on the bar. (Think things like punch bowls or giant bottles of Coke Cola).

Let someone know where you’re going and how long you think you’ll be out. This can be via social networking, text or vocal communication, just make sure there’s someone who will know where to begin checking if you disappear.

If you take a taxi, text a friend the driver details (this should be on a little card on the dashboard with the driver’s last name, photo, and ID number). There are some fake taxi companies out there and it’s better to be safe that sorry.

LASTLY: If you don’t feel safe, then get out of the situation. Otherwise, have fun!

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As usual, any comments, questions or corrections are always appreciated.

This question mark is to allow people to ask questions on the post?

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How to dance at a club - The Basics

In this episode of ‘Tips That Loners Never Get Told’ we have dancing in a club. I’ll be doing a series of posts with everything from simply looking good, how to enjoy the music, basic etiquette and how to change from a vertical bump and grind to the horizontal tango.

  • The ‘Spider Principle’ of Socializing:They are just as afraid as you are”.

The first thing to remember when you are staring at those gyrating on the dance floor is that most of us don’t have a clue what to do when we’re dancing. We are all terrified. Sure, there are those who seem to be straight out of a music video damn them but you are most probably not those people. Those people have been practicing their moves for years - be it in front of the TV or with their friends for school projects. (Oh how I remember the cruelty that was the mandatory ‘Year 10 Dancing Competition’ held by the PE faculty, a good idea gone horribly horribly wrong)

Our thoughts (if we haven’t driven them out with intoxicants) more follow the line of:

'Ok, I can feel the bass really well over here and that guy/gal/other is watching me. Look cool, look cool uuuuuuuh. People are bouncing, I should bounce too! Ack! NO that makes my chest/stomach/arms wobble. Scanning… Scanning.. That person is doing this cool hip movement thingie, lets do that instead. CirclecirclecircleWIGGLEbounce! Crap, song has changed, hands in the air! I can do this I CAN DO THIS!'

… aaaand next thing you know you’re dancing like a bad parody of Saturday Night Fever.

No, most of us are not Glee stars. We are either warily watching the crowd or flailing wildly in the hopes of flagging down a partner. Which brings me to the next point..

  • Don’t run before you can walk: Stay within your limits.

Just because you think something might look cool, don’t attempt it unless you know it will look cool. Again, this is not a music video and we don’t all breakdance in the chorus. Try standing back and just looking at a crowd in the club and you will notice that most people are just bouncing up and down to the beat or wiggling their hips with their hands in the air, not actually dancing. Nevertheless, they still look good, here’s how…

  • It’s all in the beat: Follow the rhythm.

What people aim when dancing in a club is the feeling of unity, becoming part of the mob. You don’t have to think, you just move with the crowd. It sounds flowery, yes, but there is a primal attraction to allowing the beat of the music lead you. There is a reason why bass is so popular.

If I had to theorize why, it would probably be due to the original comfort of hearing your mother’s heartbeat in the womb. Its something we carry throughout our lives from lying with your head on your partner’s chest and listening to their heartbeat, to the pounding in our ears when the adrenaline gets pumping. A rhythm reminds us that we are alive.

And we can utilize this on the dance floor. Find a safe place to lean against the wall where you can feel the bass and just focus on that. When you can predict the rhythm (I love words with no vowels) start to tap it out, pat your leg or bounce a foot, it doesn’t matter. While doing this, take the time to watch the crowd again, you’ll see a sort of pulsing wave as people synchronize themselves to the beat. That is what you are aiming for. You can have the best dance moves in the world, but if it doesn’t match the beat then you’re well buggered.

Switch to bouncing gently on your toes, don’t try to overemphasize it, just allow the bounce to occur throughout your body. Relax your arms and knees enough to allow the gentle sway that naturally occurs. When you feel you’ve really incorporated the beat, start moving into the crowd. Don’t push, just start to match the pulse of the crowd. Move back and forth when they do, imagine it like the push and pull of the sea. I would say don’t over-think it, but that would be asking the impossible don’t-think-of-a-pink-elephant style.

It can help to close your eyes and simply feel the bass pumping through you, but I wouldn’t recommend doing that unless you are so packed in the crowd that there is no chance of someone whacking you in the face with the previously-mentioned flailings.

If you feel like jumping up and down, then jump up and down. As long as you stay with the rhythm, then you’ll be sweet. It might take some practice, and sometimes you’ll just spend the majority of your time back at the wall trying to find the beat. But remember, you don’t have to be able to -make- the beat, nor replicate it exactly. Just make sure to follow it.

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There you have it, how to fit in with the crowd at the club. Next in the series will be making you stand out in the crowd, but in a good way.

Handy Hint: Feeling tired? See if there is somewhere to view the crowd from above, watching patterns caused by beat fluctuation is facinating.

As always, I’d love to have feedback on the topic. Anything to add on the subject?

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'Flocking', or Why women go to the toilet as a herd

Apparently it is the cause of a great amount of confusion as to why exactly womenfolk group together when heading to the restrooms, and strangely enough it is both a easy and tricky thing to explain.

You see, men and women* have very different social rules when it comes to interaction in the restrooms.

The overall rule with blokes is 'Ignore the other men', you don’t talk, you don’t look and you pretend you can’t hear too. These unspoken rules seem to have been created from a merging of religious laws, a general want of privacy and a avoidance of being suspected as ‘gay’. This makes men’s confusion of flocking rather understandable as it seems to contradict all their known toilet etiquette.

On the other hand, with women we tend to all head off to the loos together, sit around waiting for friends, chat to each other (even with strangers) and sometimes even share stalls! There are actually a couple of good, logical reasons behind this:

Security:There is safety in numbers, being with others means there is less chance of rape, mugging or abduction. In some countries (such as India**) woman’s toilets are few and far between and there are regular cases of such obscenities occurring when women have to venture out for some gastrointestinal relief. Closer to home for the rest of us is protection when going to parties, clubbing or just being in a dodgy district.


Support: We use our friends as advisers on how we look, as secondary handbags for things like makeup, cellphones, wallets, condoms or sanitary items, to help us get out of bad situations (or bad dates), as soundboards for our angry rants, as handy cuddle-buddies/tissue suppliers when we have a breakdown, or to simply be there to tell us if we’re being idiots. The restrooms are a good, safe place to chat, leading to the third reason…

Talking: The water closet (as they call it in England) is usually quiet and handily away from our male counterparts, great for gossiping, making emergency phone calls or simply talking about someone we saw on the street.

So don’t be surprised when a lass goes to the loo with her friends despite having had a pit-stop recently, she’s just doing the social thing.

*I’m not particularly knowledgeable about the bathroom habits of those outside the gender binary, I would love to hear from anyone about the subject. (Yes, I’m odd. Hush)

**I’m not bashing India by the way, I’ll happily add more countries that are like this if you mention them.

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Hello~

Greetings new followers!

First off, a disclaimer: I am a self-professed loner, sometimes I will be as in the dark about subjects as much as you are. I am also asexual, which means I will be extra in the dark when it comes to things like dealing with crushes or how to date. I will nevertheless do my best to aid you, good followers, but take my advise with a pinch of salt as it were.

Next!

Topics coming up arrrre:

  • the phenomenon of women going to the bathroom together”, as asked by nocakenz
  • How to dance at a club, as asked by painting-in-a-cave
  • How to behave at a party, as asked by painting-in-a-cave
  • How to have a spontaneous get-together, as asked by painting-in-a-cave
  • How -not- to behave at a date
  • General social etiquette
  • How to style your hair for certain situations
  • How to pose in front of a camera

I see some awkward posing in front of a camera in my future….

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Tips That Loners Never Get Told: Nail Care and Polish Tricks

I’ve always been interested in nail designs, but when you have numerous cats (and therefore cat fur), family members who won’t stop typing or moving long enough to practice on, go to schools which ban nail polish use and personally have a strong dislike of false nails, you end up being rather delayed in nail care knowledge.

Here are some tips that I’ve noticed that people seem to think is obvious when doing nails:

  • There is a order to nail maintanence
  1. Remove any old nail polish.
  2. Trim your nails.
  3. File off the rough/sharp bits on the tip of the nail.
  4. Trim cuticles if you can be bothered.
  5. THEN begin with polish. (There can be many more steps, but then we get into complicated territory)
  • When filing nails, use the roughest grit (filing surface) first and ease down to the finest. (This is a good tip for filing of any surfaces)
  • If you are crap at painting just on the nail, or if you are doing painting techniques that slop around a bit - like ‘ombre’ (fading from one colour to another, you end up sponging your whole fingertip), then get a teeny tiny paintbrush and dip it into nail polish remover (or acetone, if you’re in my family) and use that to neatly clean off the excess polish around the nail.
  • Don’t use tissue or toilet paper when removing nail polish, it tends to fall apart and go everywhere. Use cotton buds/pads/tips instead. Or a non-fluffy rag if that’s all you’ve got.
  • When painting long-term nail designs (1-5 days), you use many layers of polish. 
  1. Base coat: This stops the polish from staining your nails, can be used to cover up your natural pink nail colour, and helps stop the polish from chipping off.
  2. Main colour - Coat one: Choose your main colour and paint a coat onto the nail, stroking the brush from the base to the tip. Once you have one coat on, then leave it alone to dry. I take this time to put the first coat on my other nails.
  3. Main colour - Coat two: Paint another coat onto the nail once the first layer is dry. If the other layer is not dry then you can end up with clumps or gouges in the polish, this is important for all the steps. Make sure to keep painting in the one direction, otherwise it will not end up smooth.
  4. Main colour - coat three: If you think the main colour is now deep/bright enough then this third coat is unnecessary. But some polishes are rather translucent and need a few coats to really come out colour-wise.
  5. Top coat: In order to protect the coloured polish from chipping and such, you should put on a top coat of transparent polish. Many brands tote their top coats as ‘diamond hard’ with ‘Protection Power’ but really they’re there to take the damage first instead of the colour getting scratched. You can get shiny, matte/dull or glitter-stuffed top coats. I usually go with the shiny :D.
  • White splotches or marks on un-painted nails are the cause of minor damages, not any dietary problems. But if you think your diet is bad enough to start causing these problems, then you should probably alter it slightly.
  • Tip I was reminded of by audiencecat who I originally taught it to: “If you put vaseline on your finger tips before painting them, the polish will easily peel off your skin but not your nails.”

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Is there any other things people want to know about nails?

If you have any non-nail related questions, just use the ask box.

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Tips That Loners Never Get Told: The Beginning

So, I am starting a new thing: Tips That Loners Never Get Told.

Otherwise known as the things that us peeps who didn’t have friends to learn from, didn’t learn.

Stuff like:

  • the little tricks behind neat nails
  • how to do a cartwheel (I am still jealous of all those people who did cartwheels with their friends, I never had anyone to learn them from… ;_;) 
  • how to dance at a club
  • how to fight/get out of a fight
  • slang terms (Oh urbandictionary, how I love thee)
  • double dutch, how to throw a ball, or other such other-people-needed game skills
  • how to tell a joke/story
  • how to remember names
  • how to camp/have a spontaneous get-together
  • how to behave at a party
  • how to pose in front of a camera
  • what body language is/means
  • how to get a date, end one or avoid one
  • how to do your hair for events etc

Now, some of these things I have picked up, but many of them I have not. I am curious to know, what type of things do other people feel that they’ve missed out on learning due to while growing up/still not having friends ?

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