Steve Ballmer, Taylor Swift, William and Kate and More: The Best of Celebrities Dancing Awkwardly (WATCH)
This week's most viral video: Steve Ballmer, former Chief Executive Officer of Microsoft and current owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, went a little nuts during a performance by Fergie at the Staples Center, home to his team. It's tough to figure out what song is playing in the background but the billionaire has his dance moves coordinated...in the least coordinated of ways. Check out the Vine loop below (currently at more than 4.5 million plays) as Ballmer, shirt tucked in and all, waves his arms like a wacky-wavy-inflatable-tube-man and chants something along the lines of "da da dadada."
He's not alone in his condition. The truth is that the majority of the world's population are terrible, terrible dancers. The Chris Browns and Ushers of the world can't make up for the millions in this world with square feet. This is more problematic for celebrities however, as people are more inclined to shoot video while they do their thing (as Ballmer recently found out and probably couldn't care less about. We repeat: He's a billionaire).
Here are six other celebrities caught on camera being awkward. We show you this with love in our hearts for these cultural icons.
01) Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift's presence at music awards shows was once associated strictly with the Kanye-microphone-hijacking incident. No longer. Swift is now sought out during performances by camera operators because they know that she'll be dancing. It's not that she's a bad dancer, at least compared to ourselves, but more that she literally cannot stop herself. Sometimes this means just shoulder-shimmying in her seat and sometimes she defies convention and stands while the rest of the audience remains seated. There are many, many examples but we opted for the 2014 VMA's where she shimmies and hand gestures in her seat, probably to the chagrin of the more collected Jordin Sparks and Lorde on either side.
02) The Beatles and Its Affiliates
The Beatles didn't exist circa 2014 but many of its pieces were represented at The Grammys during 2014. One thing brought them all together: Awkward grooving to the live performance of Daft Punk's "Get Lucky." Paul McCartney sways awkwardly while snapping his fingers in rhythm, Ringo Starr sways awkwardly while clapping his hands in rhythm, and Yoko Ono waves her signature peace signs all over the place...maybe in rhythm. Her son Sean Lennon is more composed, probably embarrassed by his mother's behavior as any normal son is. Say what you will about The Beatles vs. Elvis in terms of music...but the latter could definitely dance. Fast forward to about 3:15 in the video below to see the gang in action.
03) Emma Stone
Emma Stone, in her defense, was put on the spot by the Overlord of Awkward Dancing, Ellen DeGeneres, to awkwardly dance all over the place. As part of her "dance dare" segment, the talk show host asks her guests to dance behind random people around the set before the show, without the victims realizing it. The results of this experiment are incredible with Stone, who pulls the stunt on country star Tim McGraw, DJ Tony and most of the rest of the broadcast team at Ellen. LMFAO's "Sexy and I Know It" was later added for television purposes but Stone was just silently going nuts during the actual process.
04) Prince William and Kate
It's a new age. Although LeBron James still takes heat for putting a platonic arm around the Duchess of Cambridge, the Royal couple is less high-strung about social perception, which explains this clip where Prince William and his wife Kate break it down with the populace of Tuvalu during a tour of the Pacific islands. Much like your correspondent, they carry out the dance by watching those around them and trying to follow suit. Unlike your correspondent, they seem to have a good time doing so.
05) President George W. Bush
It may have been African Malaria Day but that doesn't mean we can;t have a good time. Then President Bush was on the White House Lawn for a photo-op with a group of African musicians, there to signify the event. The leader of the group clearly says something along the lines of "you're not leaving like that" before forcing Bush into a dance with his band. Dubya does better than you might imagine, shaking his groove thang and even commandeering one of the percussionist's drums for a few moments.
06) Michelle Obama
Michelle Obama gets somewhat of a pass because we have the feeling that she's probably just fine at dancing—you can see it wanting to come out as she dances to Beyoncé with a small army of middle schoolers in the video below—but she's either worried about public perception or just camera shy. She needn't be: Her husband doesn't think twice about grabbing a microphone and serenading the world with Al Green covers.