The Solitary Couple Vibing ‘Langarm’ On A Wedding Dance Floor


A slight change of tact for my next few blog pieces as I want to introduce you all to the various people and characters that we see at literally every wedding play at. These will be, not so much off the wall observations but rather descriptions of characters that we come across on a very regular basis. I hope that you enjoy them all and can relate to the observations as much as I do.

Wedding characters #1 – The Solitary Couple Vibing Langarm On The Dance Floor

There comes a stage in the evening on every wedding dance floor when one couple take it upon themselves to go a bit old skool on us and bust out a traditional ‘langarm’ or ‘long arm’ for my English readers. I’ve lived here seven years now but the sight of a full-blown ‘langarm’ never ceases to amaze me as we are exported back in time to presumably the early 1900’s when this form of dancing would have been all the rage. This is not a platform to explore the history of the ‘langarm’ or investigate its cultural attachments and characteristics. My initial reaction when I see this is normally quite simply- “What the fuck are you doing?”

I don’t mean this in a rude way because it’s not the basic concept of the dance that bugs me. What really grains is the complete and utter lack of spatial awareness that this dance routine triggers. It’s the complete lack of empathy and understanding of those around them on the dance floor that completely blows me away every time. For me, seeing a couple dancing ‘langarm’ at a modern day wedding is akin, in metaphorical terms at least, to someone playing golf on the field in the middle of a Super 15 rugby game while it’s in progress.

What gives someone the right to completely trash everyone else on the dance floor, to bash into people, to knock into my mic stand so that I get a whack on the chin with it? I suppose booze consumption does explain it to some extent but that doesn’t cover all of the questions.

My own personal favourite is when we’ve played six or seven very upbeat numbers and then drop down into a ballad, perhaps the Police’s ‘Every breath you Take’. Cue the aunt and uncle who’ve been utterly stationary up until this point in the evening to come on and totally trash the dance floor. Up they bound from their table, like surfers gliding in propelled by the waves of their former youth and before you know it, it’s utter chaos on the dance floor as people’s heads and backs are collided with, mic stands are sent flying and all of this, whilst our aforementioned ‘langarm’ couple remain blissfully unaware of the carnage that they are dishing out.

Ok, it’s a small gripe but I guarantee, look closely and you will see this at literally every South African wedding that you attend!

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