Sunday, December 30, 2012


When we set out, there was just rain, heavy rain, so much we thought snow couldn't stick.
Two hours later, it had stuck with heavy snow and dangerous road conditions. Happily most people had decided to stay home, cocooned in. The snowplows did too.
Coming up, choices for a night out on New Year's Eve, so this Saturday night could be quiet.
We got home safely, twenty minutes instead of ten, and the dancing was great! Thanks Linda!

Saturday, December 29, 2012


I really couldn't think about it until Christmas was over.
Not thrilled by the choices - expensive, distant, small dance floors.
My casual New Year's Eve the last couple of years needed a decision ahead and a lot of advertising, I'm afraid, for me to be satisfied with the turn out so that the floor looked full and the hall got some money.
Family and weather are a couple of dicey factors.
Joe said  "Well, what about Landucci? They are advertising dancing for NYE."
I didn't think so because my dancing friends have never mentioned the spot.
So we went down to check it out. Eddie Sheer was on piano. The old Nimrod crowd had come by for live piano keraoke(bad). The room was cozy, and the dance floor, with 2 couches and a coffee/cocktail table filling it just then, is tiny.
December 31, dancing friends went to Rhodes-on-the-Pawtuxcet in Cranston RI. $95 each, great dinner, fabulous ballroom floor, balconies, ballroom DJ, pro ballroom show, cash bar. Joe vetoed.
So, the evening at home

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas reunion

Our time setting up the house for my father so he could return home was stressful, but worth it for all to see him in the best possible situation for the 89 year old man with dementia and a stroke. He is very weak and confused, so we kept things quieter than they have been in the past.
Luckily my grandchildren are sweet little ones with a very responsible mother, so the chaos was tempered with restraint as well as good cheer.
Singing the Christmas carols we love, I experienced the surge of sadness as it will be passing away. My parents' house has been the gathering spot for 50 years.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Holiday parties

I only played one Christmas themed song for the 4H party at the Federated Church in Hyannis, Jingle Bell Rock, because it's such a great swing number. We moved on to do Hustle, the dance style that fits the music of the moment, stuff like "Moves Like Jagger". Disco didn't produce any great Christmas themed songs anyway.
The kids seemed to appreciate the constant partner changes. Partnering is such a difficult thing for all ages that even I, though usually happy to dance with everyone, can feel foolishly tall. Teenagers especially need to experience all sizes and skill sets while they explore their identities. After the lesson, they could dance with whomever they liked, using the open dancing instead of being stuck with the fashionable too sexy moves that are so prevalent that many schools have cancelled dances altogether.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Youth dance

CCBD is offering a program at the Sturgis School, starting in January. Debbie Israel will take the first three weeks to teach Swing and Hustle, I have the Latin dance to present in the second three weeks.
Should be interesting. We all have dreams of what could come of the program, but for now, I'm just going hope they all have fun.
Tomorrow is a dance with some of the kids, set up by some home schooling parents. I hope I'll have the time to report on it.
I've been at my parents' house this week and return there next week. Transitions are tough and this one particularly, bringing home an 89-year-old Alzheimer's patient after a stroke that landed him in re-hab for 100 days. He is happy much of the time, though almost helpless. Our CPN handles him like a two-year-old. Second childhood indeed.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

4 beat Hustle - super easy

Finally, after sweating through Samba, I gave my class a break and presented 4 Beat Hustle - like Swing only easier. All this time I've been telling them they could do Hustle, so then they found out I was right. We transferred a bunch of Swing steps and added in a step from Mary French that I see in no other dance. I even got a bit of what I see as often lacking, the arm in the air accent, then talked about Saturday Night Fever, the movie - John Travolta said they were making an art movie about a passe flash-in-the-pan fad dance, and had to find the clothes to wear in second-hand shops.  Once it swept the nation, Mary French paid off her mortgage, filling the studio for 3 hours every night at $5 per person per hour.
At the end of the hour, I showed them the New York variation, invented after the movie, 3 Beat Hustle,  the norm today taught by most dance teachers, not necessary to enjoy all the steps and the continuous music, but showier.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Ladies' Dance Class in Hyannis

I went to Michelle Colley's dance exercise class at Dance Designs this morning. Wow, did she keep us moving! She uses great music and nice choreography, though I doubt I will ever really get the steps to do a group dance like she and the ladies did at the Art and Souls Ball at Cotuit Arts Center. I am a bit old for high kicks though I enjoyed the jumps and felt like it was a great work-out in many ways.
The hip-hop moves were particularly new to me. Klara Koenig never had us stomp and strut.
The other older ladies were glad I was there (making them look good), and encouraged me to return. With two bottles of water.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Why Worry

Remember Alfred E Newman, the What Me Worry kid? Mad magazine?
I try not to worry. My older sister is the worry wort. Things will work out, I usually say, until I have to make sure they do. I had a last minute change of venue this month -very stressful - but once the dance started, I relaxed and had a great time with my fellow dancers. We were very happy JP joined us at the Conservatory.
Line dances are very much not my thing, though I practiced quite a bit. I needed to remember Lillian Roma with the "Alley Cat", the line dance she taught at the Wianno Club in the nineties. She died last month.
Then JP very kindly sent us through a terrific Samba Chicka-Boom line dance, and informally through the Hustle line dance, to "A Fifth of Beethoven" rather than the usual "Night Fever."

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Dance & Stretch Class

More dancing, less stretching, seems to be popular and in line with Gretchen Reynolds findings on fitness, but a certain amount of centering and attention to how the muscles and joints are working does a body good. Right brain awareness is key.
Meanwhile I am trying to make line dances work for me. That is a totally different type of attention. Left brain activity. One step after another. Like algebra, not geometry.