The Impromptu Solo

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Yesterday, at the manager’s meeting, the message was quite brutal. Today, about 30 minutes before we were due to trek over to the building where the show would go on, I get a Skype from my boss. At first, it was just to see if I knew what was coming and I said I did and then he expanded it to look at projects and people and what we need.

I told everyone on my team that they needed to be there or to listen in on the live case because some come in a little later. I gathered a group and we walked through the wind chill warning to get the song and dance. It turns out that this guy is so good at corporate doublespeak that he never came out and said reductions. He spoke vaguely of cost cutting and finding the right size for the organization. And, when pressed, he equivocated saying nothing had been decided.

Which is probably true except if they are gathering information, then they probably have a pretty good idea of what is going to happen. Look, I get that jobs aren’t forever and corporations toss people aside from time to time. Maybe it is just hard to actually come out and be honest but it seems like if they were and could present a coherent plan for the decisions, that it would be easier to take. But, more often than not, things seem like they are decided behind closed doors and the better politicians and their favored people win out.

So we got back and my team wanted to talk so we found an empty conference room. Because the message was muddled and vague, there were many different interpretations so we talked through all that. Told them all that I would never hold it against anyone who decided to look for another job and some other things. It was a good session. One of my most senior people told me that I didn’t know how much they all appreciated my honesty and transparency. We don’t know what the future holds but they all now know the risk of sticking around and riding it out.

And now on to happier stuff. Had a double lesson today to make up for the one I had to cancel on Tuesday. The first lesson was Fox Trot and Viennese Waltz. More work on the new parts we added. The Fox Trot stuff fits really well. Still have the issue with getting a good connection in the shadow part but JoNY seems OK with it so maybe I’ll just let that go. There is some stupid shaping I’m supposed to do and I can’t figure out how my body is supposed to look and it all feels awkward so I’m a little frustrated with that.

With the Viennese Waltz, we appended the new stuff to the current pattern. It comes after we do a run and we both do a free spin. Then we go into the continuous open naturals. But there was a a problem. To teach me the step, OwnerGuy had me start with an advanced left turn and then do a back change step to get into it. Well, that was just a prep step. In adding it to the pattern, I have to pick her up after the spin and not close it off and then go into those open naturals. I struggled at first because I was trying to go right into them because I thought that’s what JoNY wanted. Turns out that isn’t the case. After picking her up, I do sort of a back change step which is now the new prep step for the natural turns. We tossed out the advanced left turn because it didn’t fit with the pattern so that was just a learning device. Once I figured that out, things fell into place. After the naturals, we do the canter spirals and, eventually, OwnerGuy is going to add something else.

So we are nearing the end of our lesson and group class is right after the lesson and a crowd has gathered. The new guy is teaching the group class and he starts to close the curtain. JoNY tells him she wanted us to do the whole pattern one time with music but it is group class time so I think we were going to just bail. Then, someone sitting on the sidelines screams out “DEMO”. Funny thing was that she isn’t someone I’ve actually talked to a lot. Anyway, a few other people join in the chant, so I look at JoNY and kind of shrug and say to myself “what the heck”. So we ended up doing an impromptu solo in front of the assembled people who had shown up for group class. Almost forget the last part, but JoNY got me back on track. Yes, people seem to like to watch me dance.

I took the second lesson during group and we did Cha-Cha and Rumba in the small area behind the curtain. I’ve got the patterns mostly down so the focus was just on my elbows which tend to want to flair out into a smooth like frame when they need to be closer to my body. Plus, I can’t let them get behind my body which also happens from time to time.

I do have a problem with the new Cha-Cha step. It is this in and out triple progressives. Basically it is tripling away and then towards and then away and then taking one step towards and the separating and then me rolling her in. Well, she tells me that we can’t turn totally away from each other or it puts our arms in a weird place. So it is supposed to be away but still moving slightly forward. Then, she tells me that it isn’t supposed to move forward. Well, that’s just not possible. Yes, we got out three steps and then turn around and go in three steps which should put you back to where you started. But then you go out three steps and only come back one. Unless you make that one step huge, it will travel. Maybe I just figured out what is supposed to happen but JoNY really had no answers. OwnerGuy was on a lesson and he said we’d focus on that step on our next lesson.

I had originally planned to stay for party but it started to snow. I salted my driveway before leaving but that can’t keep up with heavy snow and since my driveway goes uphill and curves, it really doesn’t take more than an inch for it to become difficult to get up. While we are out of the dangerous wind chill zone, the temps are still in the teens and I was not wanting to have to shovel my car out in those conditions. I can pretty much get down the driveway in heavy snow so getting out tomorrow isn’t a problem. Getting up tonight was the issue. I made the right call because I got up but started to slip a bit right near the top of the driveway. Any later and it would have been problematic.

So it was a long day today full of highs and lows. Hopefully, tomorrow will be a bit calmer.

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