This week couldn’t end soon enough. The work crisis continues and I had people call in sick unexpectedly so there was more juggling and changing of plans. And the investigation into the unexpected results continued with more data and more avenues to explore. I swear that sometime around mid day, I could feel my mind turning to mush. It has just been too much being “on” and too many things to deal with. I did manage to remember to send some thanks to those on my team who stepped up and jumped in to help with the investigation. I can get so focused on finding the solution that I can forget to acknowledge the very real efforts of people who care so I’m glad something kicked me to do that.
Last night’s lesson was Viennese Waltz and Bolero. Kid T makes some interesting selections in the dances she chooses to work on. I give her a lot of credit, she had read and digested all the feedback we received from Showcase and she’s using it to focus on certain areas in each dance. With Viennese Waltz, it was for me to do more rise and fall in certain spots. I had always heard that there wasn’t really a lot of rise and fall in the dance but I guess I wasn’t doing enough and the judges want to see more. But that was a relatively easy thing to deal with and she said she could feel the difference so now it becomes something to work on.
Bolero was all about lowering more. Ugh! I can lower but I pay a price for it as evidenced by the ice pack on my knee right now. (I realize that you can’t see through the computer so you’ll just have to trust me that its there) I suppose a rational, logical person would wonder why I would subject myself to something knowing it was going to be painful the next day. Well, I don’t have a logical, rational answer. I could do less but it would still hurt to some degree but it also wouldn’t look as good. So why not try to be the best I can be? The other part that she wanted to work on was pushing off the back leg more which is a common theme because we also needed to do that in Cha-Cha. And, like Cha-Cha, I felt it in my thighs. The good news is that I was doing it right. The bad news is I’ve found another muscle group that needs to be strengthened.
There’s a t-shirt I came across on a web search that said “Artist + Athlete = Dancer”. That is so true! But the physical demands of this sport do take a toll. And, I know that I can be a little obsessive about exercise in general. I’ve got some kind of irrational fear that if I skip a day on the treadmill that all the accumulated fat I lost will just jump right back on me. And the fact that I’ve started to actually see results from the personal training keeps driving me to go back and do more. But, every so often, my body reminds me that I’m not in my 20’s anymore (or really even close) and that are times when it is OK to rest and maybe not try to do so much. Had one of those days today since my knee was sore and there were other parts that still hurt from my training session on Tuesday. And, I figure I’ve got a double lesson and a group class tonight, so I’ll get all the motion I need. I still got a little twitchy about skipping the gym today but it was the right thing to do.
Sorry, I’m going to jump around a bit. My mind is still a bit mushy so I’m just dumping some stuff. OwnerGuy was AWOL last night and with M-Dawg’s departure, it left a serious lack of males so my dance card was full at the party. There were two newer couples at the party so Z did the normal Famous Franchise trick of shouting out “find someone you haven’t danced with before” in order to try and break them up. And then they sent Lady Gator to make sure the newest couple was separated. She of course steered the lady to me and took the guy. The song was a cha-cha and she had never done cha-cha before. So, yes, I had to teach her some basic cha-cha steps. No, it was not male ego!! It was either that or stand there talking until the song ended. She was actually a real good sport about it. I think they both love dancing and want to learn more. The next song was a Fox Trot and somehow we just stayed together and, yes, she really hadn’t done any Fox Trot either so I was again the pseudo-instructor. Fox Trot is easy because you can just say “back, back, side, together” and it all works out. Had to do some simple rocks and promenade to corner but that also all worked out. I do gain a new appreciation for instructors when I do things like that though. Counting through an entire dance adds an extra layer and having to gauge when she forgot to change her weight and getting her back on track and also having my eyes constantly in motion to make sure we weren’t going to get run into. But, I will say this again for anyone who is relatively new, I enjoyed dancing with her. Yes, as an advanced dancer, it is great fun to grab an instructor and do some flashy patterns and show off. But it is also a lot of fun to experience what it was like to be starting out on this adventure through someone else. To see their eyes and the body posture as they start off apprehensive and not really sure what is going to happen and there are the inevitable stumbles at first but you can feel the joy as it starts to make sense and they start to move and realize that they can do this and it opens the curtain a little bit on where this journey can go. There is something nice about sharing the love of dancing that we have so, yes, I truly enjoy dancing with newcomers.
The party devolved a little bit. Z and Lady Gator came up with some kind of a line dance which was actually a circle dance when you did a couple of steps with one partner and then moved to the next and repeated the same steps. Hilde had to drag me out there. I guess this is all about being social and some people enjoy that kind of thing. OK, I’ll admit it wasn’t hideous but I’m not normally a joiner and “forced fun” events kind of turn me off. And, with OwnerGuy out, Z had control of the music meaning she played what she wanted to hear and then tried to claim that it fit a certain dance style. Most of the time it did but some of them were stretches.
Oh, and to close, I’m going back to a work story. I am convinced that some people just look for the dark cloud behind every silver lining. I can admit that I’ve probably been one of those people in the past but this must be a sign that I’ve changed my outlook a bit because I see her coming and all I can think is what a downer she is. Well, she comes to me and asks if I can just listen to her vent without offering solutions. Since she works for me, I said ‘no’ because I wasn’t going to guarantee that. It turns out she had worked herself into a frenzy over some upcoming project because of what might happen and what decisions might be made and how would she do something if some chain of events happened. Now, I will tell you that I know people need to vent and I’ve have people in my office blowing off steam over events that have happened. Don’t really have much of a problem with that. Get it out of your system and move on. But to start moaning about things that haven’t even happened yet and things that may not even happen. No, I’m not going to take that. Start with a positive attitude. Believe you can handle whatever comes your way and you’ll find a way to make it happen. Believe you are doomed from the start and you’ll find a way to make that happen as well. In short, she was asking “what if it fails” and my response was “what if it passes”. I get that certain people like to think about contingencies but there is no way you can cover every possible outcome and the more time you waste thinking about “what if”, the more likely you are to tie yourself into knots and then it is probably more likely that something will go wrong. Try and enjoy the here and now. The future will take care of itself somehow. Maybe not the best management strategy because you can’t end up being blindsided but certainly better then worrying yourself into a frenzy over something that hasn’t happened.
On my way home, I noticed they had opened up a bridge that had been closed for construction. It was only closed for two weeks and they actually hit the schedule to get it reopened. It didn’t impact me but she has to cross that bridge to get home and it meant a longer detour for her so I texted her to let her know the bridge was open thinking she’d be happy that her trip home would be easier. Her response was “there goes my peace and quiet” . Yes, with the bridge closed, the road in front of her house had less traffic. I suppose that’s not exactly looking for the dark cloud but it struck me that two people could look at the same event and have completely different reactions. Goes back to my thought that some people just seem to look for reasons to be unhappy and then they usually are. I don’t have time for that anymore. I prefer being happy.
OK, that’s enough for now. Sorry if this rambled a bit but I just felt the need to get some of this out to clear the junk from my head. Got a Quickstep lesson with Kid T and OwnerGuy scheduled for tonight. She actually booked him so he should be on the lesson. I told her that he’s got one lesson to fix this Quickstep or its out at the next Showcase. I’ve already proven I can do the routine since I did it last Showcase. No reason to do it again if it isn’t fun and, right now, it isn’t a lot of fun. We shall see how it goes.