So the first lesson of the evening was Peabody, Swing, Cha-Cha and Viennese Waltz. We have had a spell of above average temperatures for this time of year but OwnerGuy had the ceiling fans set in reverse so there was no real air flow to speak of. The air conditioning was on but I was soon a complete mess. I believe I mentioned before that when I started with the Body Double, it seemed like we were working harder. Well, Kid T has taken that to another level. Anyone who thinks ballroom dance isn’t a sport just needs to have a lesson like that.
I had worn my normal work shirt which is a nice button down thing but, after the lesson and before group, I went out to my car to basically sit with the A/C blasting on me for a bit. I just happened to have an exercise shirt that I wore during my treadmill session that day and just forgot to take out of the car when I got home. I figured it was better than what I was wearing, so I changed shirts in the car and came back for group class and my second lesson wearing an exercise shirt. Figured I’d just give up all pretense of trying to look civilized and just acknowledge that she’s working my butt off.
The second lesson was quickstep, fox trot, west coast swing and tango. We straightened out part of the Tango that was bugging me. I’ve got a section of six quicks and the first two are just walks and then they turn into swivels. With each dance there were some minor adjustments. I need to keep my arm closer to my body in parts of the Cha-Cha and Swing so I just now think T-Rex arms. I’m trying to memorize the sections of the Peabody so I don’t get lost thinking about what comes next. Still have to work on keeping my head back but my timing was better.
We get to the end and Kid T is all excited about how well it went and giving me high fives and the like. The cynical, sarcastic little voice was saying “well, what else is she going to say”. But, I wasn’t in the mood to hear that so I just ignored it. To be honest, I don’t care if she was just trying to pump me up. After you’ve spent two lessons working your tail off, it is nice to hear some acknowledgement that it went well. It is better than doing all that and just walking off the floor to “sign the book, see ya”. But her enthusiasm felt real to me. I think I did finally get her a little worn out as well. Normally, she comes off the lessons looking great and I’m a mess but it was clear we had both been doing a lot.
And I think the positive attitude and the whole “you can do it” is making a difference. The peabody is still new and I’m struggling to get the various parts down. There is one transition that is still not cemented in my brain so I keep messing it up which is frustrating. But, I actually heard myself say “I’ll get this” after messing it up for what felt like the 100th time. At the end of the second lesson, I asked if we could run through the Peabody again so I could get a little more practice. The Quickstep is still rough but there is really nothing I can’t do.
Wanted to talk briefly about group class. File this one under the fact that I just notice little things and then have to talk about them. We were doing Tango in group and there was a step where you moved to promenade and then we also did a couple of cortes which are the iconic Tango moves where you make a sharp movement with your body and hit a nice pose. Here’s what I noticed. With the exception of one newbie, the other three ladies I was dancing with all ended up in relatively close contact with me during the dance. Now, as the man, I can’t force that so I just offer up the frame and they determine the appropriate distance. Not that it really means anything but I did notice they weren’t as close to the guy next to me. See, these are the things that I just notice and think are interesting. I will say that being closer just made those steps easier to do and they traveled more and I think we ended up hitting some nice poses. Maybe everyone was just feeling the Tango last night but, with my personal space issues, I’m going to notice these things. Didn’t bother me at all – so maybe I’m getting over that as well.