Why Do We Tolerate The DJ?

Maybe it’s the physical and literal pedestal a DJ occupies. Maybe it’s the throng of girls staring up at him expectantly, poised occasionally against a makeshift barricade if the event warrants such precautions, arms all akimbo, hair in a post-coital swirl and skin glowing with the color given by one too many raspberry lemon drops. The DJ wears an expression that says “I hate you” and “community college.” Sometimes, especially if they’re European, he’s bouncing up and down with a feverish, hypnotic expression that means he’s lost in some self-contained vortex. It’s a duplicitous look typically found on strippers and other pay-for-play entertainers, an outward gaze that advertises seduction but inwardly is mulling over W-2 forms, poor career choices, the last episode of Glee.

For the scattered and horny straight male contingent of the club, guys who go back to work in the morning as junior media planners at trendy advertising agencies or online community managers, the entire charade is a little confusing. “What is that guy doing up there anyway? Where are the records, I thought DJs had records. Is this Jock Jams Volume Two? How come he’s allowed to smoke up there? He’s really not sweating in that leather jacket? Larry David was wrong – there are three kinds of people who wear sunglasses indoors: blind people, assholes AND disc jockeys. Why does he get free drinks, waiters don’t get free drinks, isn’t this guy just a glorified member of the wait staff? I thought it was his job to get me laid, not the other way around. How the fuck do I dance to dubstep?”

The DJ is eating it up. He’s pushing buttons, ordering drinks, getting phone numbers and rearranging images of his cat Frankie Knucklolz on his desktop while we silently add up the damage that awaits us when we close out our tab. We wonder how much longer we can extend the same two dance moves before anyone finds out we’re doing a thinly veiled 21st century rendering of a one-man waltz to ‘music’ that sounds more like a dial-up modem than a cutting-edge club soundtrack. We’ve sent three or four panicked text messages to our friend, but he never sees them because a pleasantly chubby Asian girl has taken a liking to him, and is plying him with drinks and strange compliments about his hair.

At some point we gaze into our girlfriend’s eyes. It was our idea to come here and she protested with ingenuity, promising to split a pint of our favorite but most disgusting flavor of Ben & Jerry’s and watch the new Katherine Heigl movie. We have grown to love Katherine Heigl movies. Our single friends will scowl with disdain when we reveal that we prefer 27 Dresses to anything Christopher Nolan has ever done. At first this was hyperbole, but then we saw Inception. Our girlfriend is wearing a most dramatic black dress that’s cut well above the knee and glistens even in the velvet glow of the club. She looks so hot. She’s dancing to music she hates, but you’d never know it. Someone tells her she looks like Mila Kunis. You look like a gutless teacher’s assistant on his night out. Holy shit, you are a gutless teacher’s assistant on his night out. How did you convince this beautiful thing to tolerate you for over three years? For the hour you guys spend together in the middle of a sweaty, hormonal dance floor, you can pretend you’ve just met, that you don’t even know each other’s names, that you’re taking her home tonight.

And when you move your two-year old son’s carseat to the trunk, and sit next to each other, roll down the windows and make out languorously and unhurried, you think back to the DJ, who’s unpacking his stuff, who’s going back to the hotel to sniff cocaine off a Hello Kitty vibrator with four gender ambiguous twenty-somethings, you’ll actually be grateful because you know in your heart of hearts, there’s no wife amongst the trollops. TC mark

image – Wikipedia

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  • collegestudent

    like…this was a good idea, and well written, but just kind of…lame.

    • http://twitter.com/the_cusp Shona

      You've just tapped into my whole M.O. I could be like “fuck you dude, I am the King of Siam” but in actuality, writing involves deciding between entertainment and truth and sometimes that line is blurred and you're sort of apologizing for yourself on the internet, nahmsaying? Full disclosure: I have been know to DJ! *Cue explosion sounds, airhorns, delayed Jamaican soundbwoy drop*

  • Lizzybelly

    a lot of dj's are dicks, granted. sux ur too old to go out anymore

    • http://twitter.com/the_cusp Shona

      The reality is that I'm just not a very good dancer and I'm incapable of enjoying the delight of dance music. I appreciate your pity.

  • MJM

    sounds like somebody got dumped for a dj a few times

  • http://twitter.com/the_cusp Shona

    I originally intended to make this a defense of DJs. Or a slightly mean-spirited joke about the caricature of a DJ. And then it just became something kind of bitter and cruel.

    • http://twitter.com/aadairv Alexandria

      I liked it a lot

  • star colonel kotaire

    no, you're right, you can't dance to dubstep. it's grunge rock 2.0; all you can do is jump around and stomp your feet, maybe clench your jaw, pop some garbage rolls, that sort of thing. and, uhh, anybody who's in the Scene knows that the new hot genre is disco. jacques renault beam me up remix pwn's

    • http://tattoosnob.com Julene

      first statement is false.

      • star colonel marcus kotaire

        ok ok you can dance but you can't liquid or moon walk ):

      • ushdugery

        You really can liquid to dubstep.

      • http://tattoosnob.com Julene

        You can do just about anything to any kind of music provided you have the rhythm to pull it off.

      • kyds3k

        this. a million times this. that’s what i said in a reply further up! i challenge anybody to play some music that i can’t do some kind of dancing to. :-)

    • http://fuckheadwitha.blogspot.com JWG

      If you want to draw comparisons with another genre and dubstep, it should be emo. Both genres were originally catch all terms for diverse and interesting music with a few stylistic similarities (overtly 'emotional' instrumentation and lyrics for emo; bass centric song construction and a 2-step beat for dubstep). Now they are both catch all terms for shitty things (mid 00s pop punk; jock techno with wobble bass).
      So to clarify: Drive Like Jehu –>New Found Glory = Actress –> Skrillex

      • star colonel marcus kotaire

        true. +5

        womp womp womp wompppppppp

  • http://twitter.com/DJfrozone DJfrozone

    as a DJ. My bad kid. We just happen to be dope sometimes. As a real DJ who actually practices, uses records and the newest DVS program. i can agree with why do some of these rotters get women. But for those of us who get off on ya'll getting on the floor. We gladly slay the women who come to us.

    • http://twitter.com/the_cusp Shona

      I was just trying to parody a half-real DJ caricature, the hair in the eye, extra schmedium sized t-shirt wearing guy with the CD-Js. There's something inherently hysterical about that scenario and the sense of reverence we must have for someone essentially hitting 'play' and then staring at us with calculated indifference. I love guys like DJ Soul, Spinna, Cosmo, Crooklyn Clan, etc.

  • Jpmcmillin

    I'm going to sample a dial-up modem tonight.

  • http://twitter.com/DJStylus Rhome

    I would edit the title of this piece to “Why Do We Tolerate Shitty Nightclubs?” Then it would be perfect.

  • Denise

    Most of the DJ's are unattractive but the ones who know how to keep a good beat going even at a mediocre club…. plus points. And I don't mean just playing the top 40's because pretty much every club in LA does that.

    Minus points for surprising clubgoers with dubstep, though I like it.

  • Pfft

    what kind of horrible places do you hang out in? also, you sound like a dork.

  • RamonaCC

    10 points for using the word trollop.

  • Guest

    “there’s no wife amongst the trollops”, 

    Sure you don't mean “there's no Madonna amongst the whores”?

  • Guest

    “there’s no wife amongst the trollops”, 

    Sure you don't mean “there's no Madonna amongst the whores”?

  • http://staugustine2.wordpress.com/ STaugustine

    the (successful) DJ is the dork who makes a dork-hating system work *for* him/her.  she/he is the pizza delivery person who somehow gets all the credit (and the cash) plus a bj for the road. i admire such wiles but would sooner pay my wife to make toast than for some random worker's mixtape.

  • David

    DJs can make hundreds of thousands of dollars, even millions, but it's rare that they're salaried. Why would they be concerned with W-2 forms?

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