Penny For Your Thoughts: A Love Letter To Dancing Drake
Dear Dancing Drake,
I love you.
Really, I could stop there. But I won’t. My love for you is a big deal to me. It is news. Because, you see, I haven’t loved any other Drake before you. Not Rapping Drake. Not Singing Drake. Not Smoldering Drake. Not Laughing Drake. Not Sinewy Drake. Not Buff Drake. Not Meek-Dissing Drake. Not Serena-Kissing Drake.
All the other Drakes before you have meant nothing. Nada.
Those other Drakes have not thrilled or engaged me at all. Rapper Drake was monotonous. Singing Drake sounded too much like every 14-year-old boy in the young adult choir who sings a solo and sounds like a wet dog whining. Smoldering Drake looks moody or like he thinks that he’s cuter than I am. (And he very well may be cuter than I, but he doesn’t have to throw it in my face.) Laughing Drake is sweet and all, but I can’t tell if he’s laughing with me or at me. Sinewy Drake looks like I couldn’t sit on his lap for longer than three minutes. Buff Drake looks like he needs to spend less time at the gym and more time at home Netflix and chilling with me. Meek-Dissing Drake has a sexist way of delivering low blows (to insult a man by implying his woman is better than he). And Serena-Kissing Drake may or may not actually be kissing Serena, but if he is, that just means he’s taken.
But you, Dancing Drake? Oh, you’re different. You’re interesting but not intimidating. You’re precious. No, I take that back. You’re too modest to be precious and too precious to be modest. (This dichotomy sounds confusing because it is, in fact, difficult for one person to embody both in real life.)
Dancing Drake, you have a depth that’s not trying to be deep. You’re unbothered without being #unbothered.
Simply put, Dancing Drake, you are that ineffable “it is what it is.” But, in this case, we really do appreciate what it is (and we’re not just saying “it is what it is” while secretly wishing that what is was not).
Dancing Drake, you are what you are. Like the voice in the bush saying, “I am that I am.” Are you God? Not at all. But you are you, and me, and everyone we know. As of this moment, Dancing Drake, you are the most relatable person on the planet.
You are me doing my “This is how it go!” boogie, the dance where I basically combine the movements of Saturday Night Live’s Wild and Crazy Guys skit and Martin Short’s Ed Grimley character. Except I’m not Steve Martin, Dan Akroyd or Martin Short, and this isn’t 1978, so it’s a little more tragic and a lot less funny when a Black woman in her 30s publicly dances this way.
But you, Dancing Drake, remind me that we do well when we dare to be the first person on the dance floor, even though we’re not the best dancer.
Some have noted that you, Dancing Drake, are like a drunk uncle or the heavily-cologned Dominican dude looking for a merengue partner. Perhaps. But when I look at you, I see my college sweetheart who used to put on Stevie Wonder records (actual vinyl that he owned, and he wasn’t a DJ) so we could dance in his bedroom. That little bit of hardwood, a small square footage next to his futon bed is, and will always be my favorite dance floor.
When I look at you, Dancing Drake, I see my male BFF from high school. To this day, his unselfconscious way of breaking out into a two-step makes me long for the days when being his BFF came with benefits.
Dancing Drake, you are every dude who could’ve been too cool or too cute or too anything to dance. But God bless you, Dancing Drake, because you danced anyway. You jauntily swiveled your hips. You eagerly twirled a finger or two. You did an awkward pelvic thrust here and there. You joked and jived with the dancers by imitating their moves. And those dancers were fully clothed! And when you, the only dude, danced with the ladies, you didn’t only perform sex-simulating choreography, which is refreshing. I mean, there were those couple seconds when you rested your head on the dancer’s rump. And there was that bit when you hoisted the same dancer up on your hips. But even those moves seemed playful and silly. If you’d pulled either one on me, I probably would have dissolved into giggles, like Sheneneh on some “You so crazy!”
Dancing Drake, I love you with your non-Chris Brown dancing self. Because heaven help us if all the dancefloors only make room for the Chris Browns of the world.
Dancing Drake, I just…I love you. What more can I say? And dammit, baby, I love you because I get you. I love you because I get you, I finally get you, Drake. After all this time, there’s a Drake who I can truly love.