So you think you can dance?

When did I cross the line between looking good on the dance floor and looking like my mother trying to dance?

I remember—OK, it’s rather a long time ago— dancing with abandon at a party and being aware that I was participating in some kind of ancient mating ritual. You danced with someone else (or you danced on your own while being aware of someone looking at you). And I think—OK, it’s rather a long time ago— it led to more advanced forms of mating behaviour.

Now, whenever I dance at home (which is often, since we have lots of music covering pretty well all genres on various electronic media) my daughters react in one of the following ways:

  • The hands go up, the eyes are averted, and the voices cry “Stop!”
  • The music is turned off abruptly, so that I stop in mid-sway or mid-twitch

(or, worst of all)

  • They laugh helplessly for about five long minutes, gasping for breath, crying and wheezing hysterically, and holding each other up.
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3 thoughts on “So you think you can dance?

  1. I’ve always admire those who can dance with abandon (I am not among them). It may comfort you to know that in all likelihood your daughters would have heaped scorn even on the earlier incarnation of your dancing self: it is the nature of adolescent girls to heap scorn in all directions.

    PS: Did you know that, judging by the above photograph, you seem to go all watery when you dance?

  2. Watery, forsooth! I will have you know that is my new favourite Photoshop effect: Palette Knife.

    You are probably right about adolescent girls heaping scorn indiscriminately.

  3. I’m an old believer in “why use a phrase when there’s a perfectly good word out there”.

    “Dance clumsily”, although not applicable here except to your impertinent children, is the equivalent of the lovely word “balter”. Check your OED to assure yourself.

    All this preamble is so I can mention a book by Ammon Shea, “Reading the OED”. Google the author and enjoy the reviews.

    These reviews alone can improve your vocabulary and could, conceivably, make you the wit of the party. For example, as someone touches up with lipstick, you can recycle an old musichall waggery and say “How dare you fard before my spouse.”

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