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Everyday I'm Shuffling

One on One | Everyday I’m Shuffling

by Andy Davis / Illustration by Laugh It Off / 09.12.2011

Don’t you hate it when you pick the wrong meme for summer? I’m pretty sure that’s the feeling over at Vodacom this week after airing their big budget summer “Mo Faya” campaign TV spot, featuring the LMFAO’s catchy but ultimately noxious “Party Anthem” (for which, you can be sure, they paid big boy money). And then being gazumped by KIA’s even bigger budget CGI hamsters-dancing, on the set of what looks like Gears of War, to the same damn tune, in the very next ad slot. D’oh!

You could almost hear the pins drop over there at Vodaworld, moments before the angry client/agency phonecalls. But hey that’s what happens when you try to pick the “sound of summer” and ride those “feel good” vibes all the way to the bank. Sure Vodacom would’ve done their research, realising that LMFAO’s June 2011 release of the “Party Anthem” blew up all over the developed world’s Northern Summer, so it was “sure fire” to replicate those globo-summer-hit vibes in the far flung colony. They then tacked this song onto the “Mo Faya” campaign, which is basically just their “interpretation” of MTN’s more successful Ayoba! But eish man, the whole thing is so damn derivative. There are literally hundreds of kif local songs to choose from that would have had the same, if not better effect. Hell HHP or Shane, from Desmond and the Tutus, who feature in the ad, could’ve come up with something bespoke for a small bump in their appearance fees.

Alas, long gone are the days when Vodacom ads used to surprise and entertain. Uh uh gogo.

Anyway, let’s now shift our attentions away from the marketing mis-steps of South Africa’s cellular network giants and focus on the unparalleled levels of kak embodied in the “Party Anthem” and the scourge of modern dance styles known as “the shuffle”.

LMFAO basically found their way to your ears thanks to none other than uber-douche global superstar DJ, David Guetta. Thanks Dave! Before that they were the one hit wonders who brought us the awesome, albeit slightly misog, “I’m In Miami Bitch”. Since the breakthrough of “Party Anthem” their following two singles, “Champagne Showers” and “Sexy and I know It” have all gone to number one on various pop charts from Canada to Australia… expect the same from 5FM after the usual two month delay.

Perhaps the coolest thing LMFAO have ever done is get into a scuffle with Republican Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney at the Vancouver Winter Olympics back in 2010. Rapper SkyBlu (one half of LMFAO) bizarrely claimed that Romney attacked him from behind and had tried to give him the “Vulcan Nerve Pinch”. F’realz. Which is cool, but also kind of apt because that’s almost exactly the same effect LMFAO’s music has on us.

But if you were looking for a silver lining, abandon hope now, SkyBlu aka Skylar Gordy, is the son of Berry Gordy jr. the American music producer who founded the incredible Motown label! Talk about selling out (y)our heritage. Brings to mind the Marley lyric: “Sometimes it seems like total destruction, the only solution.”

The shuffle, or more accurately, the Melbourne Shuffle, is possibly the most recognised contemporary dance style for suburban first world whiteys, beyond rave standards: the sprinkler, packing the boxes and parking the plane. At the risk of raising the ire of Mahala’s oversensitive commentboard trolls, as a dance style, shuffling is unassailable evidence of how lame white people really are. Dancefloors will testify! While blacks get to invent shit like hip hop, b-boying and isbujwa, whiteys, who can dance, shuffle. Oh the ignominy. The shuffle has been floating around Jozi’s South and East Rand for a few years now. And is pretty big in Lenasia too. You can catch a variety of demonstrations tonight, busting out on dancefloors at clubs in Rivonia. Earlier this year, Tiger Wheel and Tyre rode the shuffle meme… badly. On the strength of that ad, I suspect everyone at TW&T got an iPod Shuffle for xmas.

And that good people of Mahala is your One On One this Friday, a summer dance meme for douches that gestures towards the decline of human civilization. Next week we’ll write about something that we like.

Opening image © Laugh it Off. You can buy it on a t-shirt here.

*Fridays are One on One day at Mahala. One scene, one song, one image, product or design that’s made a real difference to you with its power, originality, brilliance or emotion. Tell us why it matters. Convince us it changed your life. Show us why we need to experience it for ourselves. Send yours in and we’ll publish the best. Up to 500 words. The best one each month gets R500 bucks. There are no rules. Write it how you want us to read it. Get involved.

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RESPONSES (26)
  1. Mugabe says:

    I make a habit of never watching TV. I download and pirate everything purely to get away from this kind of shit. When vodacom had that breakdancing squirrel, that’s the day i burnt my tv license and threw my bunny ariel into the oceon.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    I wish you would stop talking about white and black. I thought the good people here at Mahala would be able to look past that. I didn’t realize the lack of musical taste in South African advertising had anything to do with race.

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  3. RickRoss says:

    So that’s how you do the shuffle! Make like you’re swatting mozzies while tip-toeing on hot coals… This is the tune worth listening to, although lost a lot of traction now thanks to LMFAO: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JU9TouRnO84.

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  4. Troll of Castle Sensodyne says:

    I think you are the lame cunt Andy Davis. Why do you deride whiteness at every opportunity? Is it for real(z) or are you pandering? What happened to you to cause this obvious hate? Fuck knows. But it’s really getting tired. I read something where you profess Mahala to be “post-race”? Why the fuck then do you keep posting pieces with racist sentiment. Why not a more balance view where you make fun of every-fucking-one? Is this some misguided attempt to you try and balance the scales? Do you believe son’s should bear the sins of their fathers?

    Please explain why you seem to have zero respect for people merely for being a certain colour. I really am interested to know where you are coming from as I really saw no need for your “lame” comment above. You surely could have gone for something with more of a comedic affect over the more racially charged version you selected?

    “…as a dance style, shuffling is unassailable evidence of how rhythmless white people really are..”

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  5. cnut says:

    “The shuffle, or more accurately, the Melbourne Shuffle, is possibly the most recognised contemporary dance style for suburban first world whiteys, beyond rave standards: the sprinkler, packing the boxes and parking the plane. At the risk of raising the ire of Mahala’s oversensitive commentboard trolls, as a dance style, shuffling is unassailable evidence of how lame white people really are.”

    Or how lame your knowledge of dance genre is (do you wiki everything outsides of RSA)?

    The Melbourne Shuffle as it’s now known is a product of the ASIAN Melbournite hard-style scene umthondo and has a very big origin not too mention continuation in hip hop dance circles!

    You liberal whiteys crack me up with your hating of yourselves…

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  6. cnut says:

    Castle Sensodyne… isn’t it obvious Davis has long fallen into that blog/online mag trap of prostituting your content for comment hits?

    Or is he really just one of the many GenX over-liberal apologist whiteys…

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  7. Andy says:

    Castle Sensodyne…. brush brush brush. It’ll start working soon enough. I believe this. Mahala is post racial. And the only way to get post-racial is to stop pretending that race isn’t still the major hang up in South Africa. Our whole notion of being is predicated by it.

    To quote a line from Hagen Engler in MAHALA 4:

    “You are a racist: face it

    You can marry six black babes in a row and you’ll still be a racist. We all are. Being a racist is part of being South African. Luckily, she’s one too. You okes are made for each other. Just admit it at every opportunity then wallow in your inbred racial prejudice and bigotry. Park in front of TV talking in ethnic accents, ripping off every race group in turn. Every now and then you’ll let rip with an unthought-through clanger of such ignorant racism you’ll shock yourself. Don’t stress about it.”

    South Africans, in general, need to stop being so sensitive about race and just admit that we’re still stuck in the same mental ruts of us and them. And whiteys, in general, need to stop telling people to get over it (the past, racism, oppression, apartheid, slavery, domination etc.) and move on. Because that’s not getting over it, that’s sweeping it under the carpet to make you feel less guilty.

    And if you’re offended by this, I’m currently working on a piece that’ll really upset you. Coming soon!

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  8. Andy says:

    PS – saying “shuffling is unassailable evidence of how rhythmless white people really are.” is just as racist as saying “shuffling is unassailable evidence of how lame white people really are.”

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  9. Pedro says:

    I think you guys just got owned by the Davis…

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  10. Fuck Norris says:

    So, Andy, I agree with that quote you put up 100%.

    Do you agree that, as a commenter said on the Unicycle post, Annelie Botes should get her prize back? If she was being racist she was doing so in the most sincere and un-cynical way possible.

    My take on this is that if you want to be racist, just try be original. The whites have no rhythm thing is one old tired whore of a cliche. Or I dunno, let’s all pick a new race, like the Inuit or something and pick on them, whale-eating mother fuckers.

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  11. Andy says:

    I dunno Fuck, it’s complex. I’m affronted by what Annelie Botes said. And I think she’s an idiot. I think there’s a huge difference between being racist in jest as a way of both defusing and acknowledging our inherent racism… and the deadpan shit Annelie Botes is guilt of. Obviously, I think sincere racism is bad. But at least you can get a handle on it. Botes is cogniscent of her racism, and you can use that as a starting point for the real transformation that needs to take place.

    It’s much harder to deal with someone who is racist but pretends that they’re not. Nothing worse than the old Freudian return of the repressed – know what i mean?

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  12. Fuck Norris says:

    Yes I think it is helpful to acknowledge racism rather than leave it latent, subconscious and liable to be expressed in unconscious ways. I remember cringing as a kid when my mom locked the car doors when a black guy walked past on the road – she wasn’t conscious of this or the effect that would have on him.

    Where I am not sure I agree is that ‘humorous’ racism is necessarily better. Being a cunt in jest doesn’t make you not a cunt. Maybe that also needs to be seen for what it is.

    Also in our current climate, I’m not sure how I can see using race as to provoke conflict and antagonism is really helpful. No racial group is going to respond constructively to being antagonised for their racial group membership – I don’t see this doing more than reinforcing a sense of group membership based on race, and making the group in question feel embattled and persecuted.

    Which is basically what apartheid did. So if you think more of what apartheid did is the way forward.. I dunno.

    Is our cultural discourse going to be about pointing fingers and laughing, and saying ‘look they dance funny’, ‘look they think funny’, ‘look they drive funny’? Because then we’re heading towards being a fully qualified idiocracy that hasn’t learnt a single lesson from its past.

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  13. Troll of Castle Sensodyne says:

    What evs Andy. I think Cnut put it quite concisely

    “Davis has long fallen into that blog/online mag trap of prostituting your content for comment hits? Or is he really just one of the many GenX over-liberal apologist whiteys…”

    I agree, race is a big hang up and it will always be…everywhere on the planet. Humans are fucked up.

    My basic gripe is that you continually target one specific group. Why no attacks on the stereotype blacks, indians and people of mixed race? That would be post race. Mix it up. Besides. Surely your anti-white vitriol serves no purpose. The vast majority of the people you are referring to are over 45, don’t use the interweb and will die out soon. As I said, you seem to be on a misguided crusade to balance the scales.

    I really do feel that you are just an exibitionist aiming for a quick rise. It is unproductive. I dare you to mix it up. Fuck with the whites. Fuck with the blacks. Fuck with the mixed race. Rip the hell out of us all. Jesus…there is enough material. Spead the love around. Don’t be the GenX over-liberal apologist whitey. Climb out of that box. You can do eeet.

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  14. Troll of Castle Sensodyne says:

    Fuck said it better

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  15. Troll of Castle Sensodyne says:

    BTW. Who invented the Macarena…?

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  16. Troll of Castle Sensodyne says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8F9Ml2mFPw

    Lame whiteys

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  17. polony says:

    boring

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  18. Benjamin says:

    let’s just be honest white people are lame, we have to answer for Garth Cliff and Steve Hofmeyr.

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  19. Me says:

    Hey Mugabe, I run a small production company, making my own living through extremely hard work, so I just want to say to you, and all the other cunts who are proud of pirating, FUCK YOU. You steal stuff other people make. I hope you choke to death this week.

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  20. Poster says:

    Relax, Me.

    No one owes you anything.

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  21. Me says:

    Wrong, Poster. If people take something I’ve made, but refuse to pay for it, they owe me what it’s worth.

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  22. Anonymous says:

    crap work dude…

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  23. @ Benjamin says:

    Black people are also lame, they have to answer for Malema and Mugabe and Andy

    Lets just call it even

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  24. SihleMthembu says:

    ahh ok then

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  25. Thato Tsotetsi says:

    “At the risk of raising the ire of Mahala’s oversensitive commentboard trolls, as a dance style, shuffling is unassailable evidence of how lame white people really are.”

    LMAO (Excuse the pun) that there says it all. Loved this!

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  26. sigh says:

    this is so bland

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