Monday, July 02, 2007

Invitation to the Dance

I know nothing about dancing. I have never had a dance lesson. Never. Nada. But now, despite my advanced age and my deteriorating leg, I've decided to learn. Wen, who is a professional dance teacher (among other estimable things), was kind enough to recommend some instructional dance videos. These are ordered and in hand, and so my journey begins. I'm sure it will provide amusing fodder for many blog posts to come.

I'm starting with the waltz. When you first get to see "under the hood" of something you've only ever known as an outsider, it can be strange and startling. Take the waltz, for example: In my mind, the word "waltz" has always conjured an image of couples whirling and spinning and twirling and circling across the floor, the skirts of the ladies' colorful gowns billowing out behind. Imagine my surprise, then, when I learned that the basic waltz step actually travels in a rectangle, facing the same direction the entire time, and ending in exactly the same spot where it began. Nary a whirl, spin, twirl, or circle in sight. It was not what I expected.

I imagine I will be whirling and spinning soon. In fact, I think the very next lesson has something to do with turning. But for now I'm patiently trying to master the so-aptly named Box Step.

One two three, one two three.


Were you not subjected to mandatory seventh grade ballroom dancing lessons? I was! Little Billy Moran hated to be paired up with me since at 5' 6" I towered over him. But we were forced to box step our way through the school year, culminating in my first "prom" in the junior high auditorium. Billy brought his posee, the Donovan brothers, and the four of us danced til ah, at least seven thirty.
Enjoy! I love to dance and am of the opinion that the reason we evolved to be bipeds is for the waltz. Everything else, walking, running, etc. is just icing on the cake.
No, linshaolin, I know many children are persecuted with ballroom dancing in grammar school, but not me. Perhaps the nuns didn't know how to dance.

Interesting theory, Glenn. To think that up until now scientists thought that we evolved into bipeds to free our hands up for the use of tools. And now the truth comes out: Early primates were really holding on to one another and shuffling around in the Box Step.
hee hee, the box step rocks. :) actually, it's a great step because you use variations of it in foxtrot, rumba and waltz...

and yes, soon you will be spinning wonderfully around the floor. (you can rotate the box!)

good luck!! and e-mail me if you have any questions. :)

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