Ten stupid things beginners do to mess up their contradance experience/Tolerating Bad Behavior from Other Dancers

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7. Tolerating Bad Behavior from Other Dancers.

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This really isn't a stupid thing to do as much as it's a byproduct of being an inexperienced dancer. Sometimes (but rarely), you may run across a dancer who will be overly familiar to a greater or lesser degree. Occasionally, someone will interact with you on the dance floor in a way that is painful (because the figure is improperly done) or that makes you uncomfortable. With all the bodies on the floor whirling around each other in close proximity, some inadvertent contact that you wouldn't expect from a stranger is bound to happen, most of it clearly accidental and unintentional.

However, if you think the contact was intentional, or that another dancer has done something inappropriate, please let the dance organizers know who it was and what was done when you are done with that dance. They will know if others have complained about that dancer, and can keep an eye out to see whether this is part of a pattern of behavior, or just an isolated incident.

While it's incredibly rare, if the behavior was criminal then it may even be appropriate to involve the police to address the situation. First, of course, talk to the dance organizers, even about something that seems minor and petty. This is only mentioned for completeness; a contra dance is as safe an event as you will find, and it's virtually unheard of for this sort of behavior to happen on the dance floor. Another way to say this is that this kind of conduct is so rare that you can dance for decades without experiencing it. Most dancers never have and never will.

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