Snowchella, womping and the right to dance

Feb. 8, 2013, 12:56 a.m.

Last Saturday night, hundreds of students rolled out to the Sigma Nu lawn for Snowchella, the yearly benefit concert that brought to campus three impressive acts: psychedelic rock band Cuckoo Chaos, disco-house producer Shook and music industry boss Salva. The three distinct acts had a wide range of musical sounds, which collectively made an eclectic and enjoyable listening experience. Starting off the night, when Cuckoo Chaos played their set, the small audience that was present swayed and nodded along. Later on in the night when Shook took the stage, some soulful grooving and moving became visible, along with the ubiquitous fist pumping. Finally, ending the outdoor-part of the night, Salva brought the bass and inevitable “womping” that followed suit. Needless to say at this point, the aggressive fist pumping became a greater force to be reckoned with, and often avoided for the sake of one’s own bodily health.


Now, personally, I am not opposed to “womping,” the dance move characterized by bobbing up and down with the music akin to a jellyfish (think flowing up-down hand movements), nor am I against fist pumping. But, I do believe that people should dance in a way that suits them personally and expresses how they individually react to the music–in whatever way that may be. Therefore, when masses of people do the same exact dance move, I cannot help to wonder if they are truly expressing themselves. Why are they moving as a mob? Do they feel awkward, tapping into the power of movement on their own? But, most important–is this an uncomfortable setting where these fist pumpers fear judgment?


Dearest fist pumper, I ask of you, “why not”? Why not move freely and without any reservations? Why not blaze your own trail and wiggle your bum with all the freedom in the world? Why not be an individual in a crowd of mindless sheep? Despite anything that anyone has ever told you, there is no right way to “dance to something,” no matter what genre of music. So, fist pumper in the back, after being interrogated by my questions, I implore you to free your inhibitions, shake your head and do the Charlie Brown. Move your body however the music bends you, and never fear what the judgmental guy standing next to you thinks–he isn’t having as much fun anyways.

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