Do Salsa Bullies Exist?

Bullies = A group of individuals that tend to torment others, either through verbal harassment or physical assaults, or through more subtle methods of coercion. (

The first time I encountered a bully was in the third grade when during lunch time he would come up to me and take the pudding snack that my mom so kindly had in my lunch bag each morning. Although it took a couple of weeks before I had the courage to grab and pull his hair until he cried, I learned one important thing about bullies: they exist!

Do salsa bullies exist, the kind that harrass you on and/or off the dance floor? The answers is yes.

A salsa bully is in all of us, ready to come out and enforce cruel justice when called upon. Yes, we all like to believe that we're nice-y salsa dancers but in reality if the right conditions are met we'll be a bully...bully your salsa ass right into the wall.

How many times have you been happily dancing salsa with your partner in a corner of the dance floor, in a little zone, only to have some unknown couple corral themselves right into your corner. Now why would you do that when there's plenty of room opposite of us and the dance floor corner?

How many times have you been in the middle of the dance floor with couples all around you, and there's that one couple that's taking more room on the dance floor than two elephants dancing samba, which results in them occasionally stepping on your foot or worse...bump into your elbow which sends your arm into your partners face? No, you mean it's only happened to me?

Some of the experienced salsa dancers know how to handle these folks with tactics only known to salsa bullies. Do you know any of these tactics on handling these situations? If not well I have one to share.

Situation: Possibly drunk couple is taking too much of the dance floor, their movements are inconsiderate of the people around them. Often found stepping on people's feet and bumping into others without apology. Sometimes seen laughing together like two Japanese school girls.

Solution: Salsa bullies will end their pattern runs and will turn one of their backs towards these types of couples, while slowly backing up into their zone of dancing....decreasing their space to dance. Although it is guaranteed that the couple will continue to bump into the salsa bully, the blunt of their attacks will be absorbed by the bully's back, very similar to a bullet-proof vest. This will result in the couple leaving the dance floor, or become submissive in their dance style because they don't know to take smaller steps. This maneuver is called "Backing It Up", not to be confused to a similar move done at hip-hop clubs where the guy backs his butt into a girl like a mating call of sorts.

You might disagree that this tactic isn't bullying but rather some sort of retribution to their inconsiderate dancing, however if you take it from the other couples's perspective while throwing in the definition of a "bully", it's difficult to rebuttal that you are indeed a bully when you perform this act!

Understand that the salsa bully is typically not a bully all the time, only at times of necessity or when needed. Does that sound similar to being a salsa hero? Well if you spend all night searching for these kinds of people and righting justice to the dancers around them then sure, you can be a salsa hero.

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