Saturday, November 27, 2004

The Move On

"I took one look and I knew."

Ever say that? Well, I just did because that's the way I remember it. The way she moved, the serious but committed look she gave her partner, and the way the dancers seemed to part before my eyes like a red sea moment as I continued to watch her progress on the floor. I had to dance with her. And so fate, smiled at my plans, if plans were what they were, and let me move on in.

Thursday, November 25, 2004


So, things are happening here. Slowly but surely I'm connecting up with a wider and wider universe. Even though as I explore the blog environment I definitely feel my own limitations. I'm a writer, a thinker, a dancer and a confirmed readaholic but computers are just the tool that saved me from typing hell and though I know how they work, I cannot find the time or inclination to add bells nor whistles to what I have to say.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Sometimes you have to go where the music takes you

Way up in Canada, where I've met some of the most mellow souls, is a dance group worth the while and then some. If you don't believe me, then follow this link: and see for yourself. Meanwhile I found this on the site's swing dance quotes list: "I do not know what the spirit of a philosopher could more wish to be than a good dancer. For the dance is his ideal, also his fine art, finally also the only kind of piety he knows, his "divine service."- Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)

Saturday, November 13, 2004

It's in the feet

It's no surprise that dancers love their feet. After all, they're what takes them where they want to go. But dancers are driven. And when the feet they love begin to hurt, which they do after a full night of pounding the boards, dancers usually keep on dancing. Which is why, I'm supposing, that the dance shoe makers have jumped full bore on to the dance sneaker craze. What I don't understand and what I'm going to try and explore further is why male dancers with feet larger than size 13 can't buy a dance sneaker and why, coincidently the dance shoe industry in the US still caters to european size dance shoes?

Monday, November 08, 2004

Just dancing ...

Just Dancing . . .

Some thoughts about how to keep your feet moving while out there on the dance floor of life.

Life is strange the way it dances us around and then lets us realize that "life is strange." I have been wrangling around this blog for months, getting sidetracked by business, then life, then more business and finally by the summer's hot sun and the lure of dancing as I tried to set it up so I could write about dancing and invite others into the conversation. And then today, well, actually tonight, I finally couldn't stand it anymore and so I made myself take the time to go to Haloscan and re-read all the instructions. It probably helps that they have made many improvements to their system while I've been dancing around. But now, as you'll see, we're up and running. Whoopee!

So here I sit contemplating going to another Skippy Blair night and wondering if the whole damn thing is worth it. Worth the anguish of not being credited for what I've learned, for what I think, for what I'd like to share. I love to take part in what happening but twenty years of teaching dance should count for something in the ongoing creation of a body of dance knowledge. What am I trying to prove I have to ask myself? But there is really only one answer to that: myself.

Just Dancing , too. . . that's what I'm thinking as I look into the worried eyes of my partner. She's apologizing and I'm thinking "it's okay, it's just dancing" when my brain finally registers what she's saying. "I can't seem to hear the music, I know this is a West Coast Swing but I can't hear the beat in the music." Oh my god, my mind goes, as I realize that she's talking about a phenomenon that I've had happen to my own dancing ears from time to time. It's like you can't, I can't, tell what the song actually is. I can hear the sound but it's really like the wall of sound that reverberates off of the cliffs as I walk the beach when the surf is really pounding. As a matter of fact I think that's what may be the cause here. Some how the music from the sound system/band/dj is reverbrating off of my inner ear in such a way as to make me feel like I'm going deaf. One time I remember telling my partner, listen, for some reason I'm not hearing the beat so if you don't mind I'm just going to follow you. The funniest part of it was that when we walked off the floor a dance teacher friend of ours raced up to tell us that in her opinion we'd just demonstrated what good dancing was all about. We both just cracked up.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Shall We Dance?

Movies are strange when it comes to dance. For some reason the film makers think we would rather see computer generated images, speeded up action, and slow motion takes than real dancers dancing. But this film did something for me that many years of dancing and many years of wishing have not. It got my lover to see what tango is really all about. The heart is the music, the mind is the matter that changes the story to fit, the dancers tell it all. She has always said she didn't like the way the men wanted to hold her, how the music was so dark. She prefers the romance in a Nightclub Two-Step. But watching the two dancers, J Lo and R Gere, the lights dimmed and the scene already set let her see that this was not about their being in love or about one or the other trying to gain the other's love but about using the dance to express the emotion of the music. And now, too, I think she knows that whenever I dance with her, in my mind, it's a tango.