Nothing much on my body has shaken since high school, when I proved beyond a doubt that my family does not possess the dance gene.
This was a disturbing discovery because I had assumed our surname originated from the famous folk dance in Europe called the “morris.” To the contrary, my branch of the family apparently was named for an armchair with adjustable back and removable cushions.
So, I am going to sit out the next dance, and all subsequent dances, from the comfort of the Morris chair.
When I was young and under the illusion that I possessed rhythm, we had our own craze called the “Loco-Motion,” as performed by Grand Funk Railroad. This was around the same time that trains were invented, thus the obsession with railroads and locomotives.
The Loco-Motion was a sort of line dance in which the participants imitated a locomotive chugging down the track. Yes, it was a proud time for American pop culture.
Today, the latest dance craze is named for the song, “Harlem Shake.” Part of the fun is to shoot video of a group dancing the Shake and post it on the Internet.
The scene starts with one person dancing the Harlem Shake for about 15 seconds while being ignored by the surrounding people. When the rhythm of the bass changes, the whole group joins in a convulsive dance for about 15 more seconds.
People have uploaded about 236,000 videos to YouTube related to the Harlem Shake. I suppose it makes as much sense as the Loco-Motion. Or Gangnam Style. Or any of the top 10 dance crazes of all times, as compiled by toptenz.net:
10. Chicken Dance, popular in the United States during the 1970s.
9. The Hustle, made popular by the 1977 disco movie, “Saturday Night Fever.”
8. The Twist, as performed in the 1960s by Chubby Checker on the “Dick Clark Show.”
7. Macarena, a Spanish song that went worldwide in the 1990s.
6. Breakdancing, a street dance of the 1970s originating in New York City.
5, The Charleston, a 1923 song named for the city in South Carolina and performed on Broadway.
4. Limbo, part game, part dance that originated in Trinidad.
3. Tango, with roots in Argentina and Uruguay.
2. Waltz, made popular in 1780s Vienna and still considered indecent in 1825.
1. Hokey Pokey, what it was all about in the 1940s.
Given my genetic immunity, I don’t get too worked up when another dance like the Harlem Shake goes viral.
Executive Editor Scott Morris can be reached at 256-740-5721 or scott.morris@TimesDaily.com