I used to know


I used to know how to lambada. Yes, lambada – the forbidden dance. A South American exchange student taught me in high school. Since 1996, though, what little dancing ability I have has gone to hell in a handbasket. Maybe I hit my head and not just my hip when ex-boyfriend dearest decided spinning me out (and forgetting to reel me back in, sending me hurtling across the room and into a wall) was a good idea.

In 1995 I went dancing all the time. I’d get all hot and sweaty and take my shirt off (it was a gay dance club, I figured I couldn’t get myself into too much trouble), and kick off my crazy high heels and dance, dance, dance! I not only knew how to throw my hands in the air, I actually did. At the end of the night, I’d look like I just crawled back from Ibiza…except I was in Cleveland and I’d have to put my shirt back on before walking to the car, because Lake Erie is no Mediterranean Sea.

No more. My left foot’s hostile takeover of the right must be stopped. I have made my decision…it’s time for dance lessons!

Dance. Yes. This, from the girl who quit ballet school because she was tired of being 2 feet taller than everyone else. The girl who has no rhythm, being whiter than an Antarctic ice sheet and all. Oh yes, the girl who watches Latin ballroom dance competitions and then trips over her own feet when she gets up to fetch another cocoa. Good idea, Shan.

But when there are entire societies devoted to making you Lord of the Dance (the tango, the salsa and more…), how to resist? How?

All I need to do now is find a willing victim partner.

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