Ferret Shock

Raves are their own world. Foam, lights, and darkness collide up against a wall of sound and are transformed into world where the beat defines the life within its range. People dance to rhythms that would have been alien to the planet even years ago, as music from other sources is remixed, synthesized, and burned to compact disks and downloaded to iPods, and then thrown at an unsuspecting world. Even the names of the genres listened to our evocative of a rave: Trance and ambience. The music has been stripped down and redressed for the dance floor, one our ancestors would have recognized from their own rituals.

disco

The dance floor is only for dancers; there isn’t room for anything but dancing. But the experience provides a common ground for when the dancers leave the floor, and from that common ground other things may develop, deals that may lead to business, romance, and anything in between. Leaving the dance floor is difficult; the music grabs you and refuses to let go, allowing you to shed the intellect that keeps you from making decisions, and allowing your emotions to take over. And if the DJ is doing it right, you will never have a proper break to shrink from the dance floor, as only thirst and exhaustion allow your intellect to come back to the fore and allow your will to take you away from the lights and music.

But when the foam hits, your body answers. There is something about water that humans find hard to resist; although it’s dangerous to us, we nonetheless can’t stop from playing in it. Throw music and darkness into the mix, and you have a recipe that almost none resist direct contact with. Foam on the dance floor makes the ego disappear, and a single person melds into the crowd where no one is judged and where all are welcome. All you need is the will to lose yours.

In certain crowds there are “ferrets”, people that are attracted to shiny objects. But there is a little ferret in everyone; some are attracted to lights dancing on the ether, and other choose to wield the lights. Both are fascinated by what the lights do; some merely watch and chase the lights that others dance with and direct, however random. Combined with music that takes over your body, and forces your heartbeat to mirror the beat of the music, and this state of ferret shock is nigh irresistible.

As egoless as the dancers are, there is always the moment when they recognize when the music that they have brought leaps from the iPod that they offered to the DJ at the beginning, through the docking station, and out onto the dance floor, leaping from dancer to dancer, and wrapping them tighter as a group. Eventually the dance may end, but that is when time applies; tellingly, watches are almost non-existent on the dance floor, abandoned with the ego at the door.

We may bring the music, but the music is by no means tamed; it merely waits for the opportunity to attack.

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