Sunday, April 25, 2010


Daniel recently told some friends he "hated" to dance.

Um, excuse me?

So I coerced him into attending a ballroom dance fund-raiser with me in El Paso last Saturday night.

When I lived in Wisconsin and later Kentucky, I was a regular at a local swing dance club and loved it. My sisters, brothers and I would practice moves in our living room and have friends over to practice. In addition to the actual dancing, I love dancing to a live band.

And guess what? It was a live 18-piece orchestra scheduled to perform in El Paso. I told Daniel if we did nothing more then just sit and listen to the music and watch other people, it would be worth it to me.

He agreed.

We had super-duper great conversation on the way to El Paso, got lost a few times, was rescued by Google Maps on my Blackberry and arrived at our destination about 45 minutes late for the pre-dance lesson.

The swing refresher course was great and while the instructor wanted us to do triple-swing, Daniel and I stuck to our basic steps, which I guess influenced the instructors to change their instruction to the basic step. Much better! We learned a new step, practiced ones we already knew and waited for the band to start.

We danced every swing song they played. Daniel approached the dance floor much like he does a football field or basketball court.

"Okay, we're going to start out with the basic steps, then we'll do the kick move, the guy-turn, I'll spin you and we'll finish it off with the arms-over-the-head move." He even clapped his hands after he said all that as if finalizing the deal.

Our first dance we lost time to the beat a couple times so I just brought us to a halt and waited for the right beat. The dances after that were perfect.

I encouraged him to not watch his feet and instead of telling me what move he was going to do next, to guide me with his hands and body language.

"You're not going to be able to tell any other girl what you want to do next," I said. "You have to lead into it."

And he did. And it was awesome.

In his words, we "tore up the dance floor."

The only glitch was swing was the only dance he knew how to lead and it was the only dance I could follow intelligently. So when the band played rumbas and polkas and waltzes and foxtrots, we had to sit out.

Two hours later, when the bad recessed for 15 minutes, we decided to go see a movie. I mean, we were in the big city after all. Movie theaters!

Google Maps directed us to the nearest theater and we watched "The Losers." (great, funny movie, btw). Here's proof of my parking job:

I missed the turn into the theater from the frontage road and instead of going under the underpass, getting back on the Interstate, turning around and approaching the entrance again, we opted for parking in a warehouse parking lot and climbing this sand hill - in our ballroom dance attire and shoes.
Daniel was so pumped about dancing he wants to do it again. And again and again, which is totally awesome for me since that means I have a built-in dance partner. :)

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