An Open Letter to the Guy Who Breaks the Dance Circle

Only break the circle if you can handle rejection.

You probably don’t remember me. You were quite busy, to be fair, using your elbows and feet to carve out a space in the circle as we danced to questionable music in Club 601. But as we enjoyed our night, busting the types of moves which looked too damn sexy in our heads, you made your move. Before we had time to process what was going on, you were already there. What was once an intimate circle of friends now had a strange, sweaty and ever-so-slightly wasted imposter in its midst.

Perhaps I’ve only noticed this phenomenon because I usually go out with females, but you certainly weren’t the first guy to break the circle. It happens almost every time we go out, sometimes several times in one night. But the same moves are typically used.

  1. The Hover: The imposter looms behind chosen member of the circle and initiates eye/body contact.
  2. The Break-In: The circle is prized open by a tactical dance-move and the imposter slides into the circle.
  3. The Mating Dance: Directing his attention at one/multiple females, the imposter utilises every motion at his disposal to attract a potential mate.

A part of me is tempted to admire you. It takes balls to approach any person you don’t know, even if your inhibitions are numbed by however many pablos, venoms or other infamous drinks. It takes even bigger balls to approach a number of girls you don’t know, who are sure to size you up with the ruthlessness that only a female “squad” is capable of. People need to get lucky somehow, why not give it a go?

Photo: Lightbox Creative, Hannah Wyles

Well, listen up my intoxicated friend – there is something that you may not be aware of. The circle of friends may look like a messy, haphazard gathering of individuals, but it is in fact sacred. This sacred circle allows friends, who have been stressed and tired and worked to exhaustion, to face one another and dance away their problems, finding a perfect balance between old-fashioned exhibitionism and the joy of being lost in the anonymity of the crowd. Indeed, it symbolises everything a friendship group should be – a supportive ring of equals unashamed to make fools of themselves in front of each other in a judgement-free zone.

So you can imagine the feelings that arise when an imposter breaks this sacred bond. Gone are those shameless moves. Gone is the air of drunken nonchalance. They are replaced by suspicion and uncertainty, tension and angst.

Some circles may forgive you. Some may even accept you. In this case, perhaps breaking the circle wouldn’t be a cardinal sin. After all, who hasn’t met someone on a night out and vowed to “definitely meet up” when sober, only to cross to the other side of the road when you see them the next day?

Photo: BBC

But here’s the next piece of sage advice that may be useful – take a hint. After breaking into the sacred circle of friendship, don’t be surprised if you find yourself nudged out of it. This may come in a variety of ways. A series of deft and deflective dance moves may be employed to push you further and further from the periphery, or the circle itself may up and move in an attempt to leave you far, far behind.

We chose the latter option to give you your hint.

It was not taken.

To conclude, please don’t think I’m making you out to be some sort of predator. You weren’t particularly creepy and you certainly didn’t ruin our night. But, through your ignorance of the profound importance of the circle, you violated the most sacred of social bonds. So it’s a good idea to think carefully next time before you break the circle, or you might just find yourself practicing your mating dance alone.



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