A young women sits in the MRT, a giant stuffed shark in her lab.

鯊魚 (The Shark)

“You are nowhere as alone as in the middle of the dance floor,” I once wrote in my notebook. The sentence probably came from a time of loneliness or a party, where I didn’t use the same frequencies as everyone else. And indeed, feeling not part of a crowd can be crushing, especially when one hoped that it is not so.

By now, when I remember the sentence for some reason, its meaning is often inverted. The middle of the dance floor is a great place to be alone, to dance in ones own bubble, invisible for everyone else! Being a shy dancer in my youth, this lesson was an important one: It’s much easier to dance not shyly and self-consciously at the side (where everyone can see you), but fight my way to the middle of the warm, quavery, sweaty mass of bodies, where really no-one cares!

It’s projecting this “I don’t care what you think!” mindset that I love about this image. Go buy yourself a really ravenous giant stuffed shark at IKEA and start cuddling with it in the MRT. (Or better: take it as a gift from whoever doesn’t need it any more after a week.) I’m all for it!

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