People often joke that I have a one track mind. Before you get excited, let me confess, that track is Dance. It's often my answer for everything - and when it isn't a viable option, I often substitute that other more common track;) But, I digress. In an attempt to spread joy, I dedicate this blog to those who haven't discovered the ultimate joy of dancing!
Edwin Denby said, "There is a bit of insanity in dancing that does everyone a great deal of good." And who doesn't want to go completely crazy every now and then? If you're saying "me" right now, you probably need to more than anyone. There's a release in dancing you can't find anywhere else. (Even in the throes of passion, those fleeting thoughts of, "Damn, he just grabbed my love handles. Does he think I'm fat now?" or "Please just turn the lights off." or "Wow! This position is not flattering!" can creep in when you least expect them). Where was I going with this? Oh yes, release;)
I'm not saying dance is all simple and perfect. There are times you feel totally naked in the room and probably wish the lights were off, but if you let your fear go, it can be amazing! (The same is true for that other track, btw;) The glorious thing is, the musical element to dancing can be our oh-so-necessary escape. Especially with Salsa, where the lyrics are exotic, the rhythms complex, and instruments new - for most of us.
If we allow it, we can be transported! Who doesn't want to spend an evening where the palm trees sway whimsically as the salty air brushes your hair off your neck and the margaritas go down like sugar? I'm about to buy a plane ticket! Or I could just go dancing this evening:)
And it doesn't have to be Salsa. Every dance has the power to transcend our daily blah's. Waltz can make you feel like a member of the royal court (without all the paparazzi and stress). Foxtrot can transform you into one of the Rat Pack. Tango...well, if you've done tango, you know. If you haven't - you should! I could go on, but I think you get the picture and I'm really craving a margarita now.
For a professional, it's easy to forget the romantic quality to dance because we're so busy trying to perfect them. I'm as guilty as anyone I know. I use the excuse that for me, it's fun to look good and move with every part of my body. And this is 100% true, but when I perform, somehow magically (or maybe just naively) I get as carried away as the first time I danced with that hot Latin stranger. I stop thinking about "perfect" and focus on the intoxication of the moment.
You can tell when there's no joy in a performance. If that day ever comes for me, I'll stop performing. The same is true for social dancing. When it becomes more work than fun, you should change dances. NEVER stop dancing! Besides the emotional release, dance is a phenomenal physical work out. Studies have shown it's also the only sport that reduces the risk of alzheimer's! The music and element of physical touch (whether with someone we love or a hot stranger) feeds our souls. And in a world where we're becoming more plugged in yet sadly tuned out - we need touch.
Who cares if you don't know the steps. Or the rhythm. Or even the name of the dance. Stop making excuses and dance already! I don't remember where I read, "Kids. They dance before they realize there isn't anything that isn't music." but it's completely true. So get in touch with your inner child and I'll see you on the hardwood!:)
Allison loves to write almost as much as she loves to dance, so no one had to twist her arm to get her to write about dancing!