Before I get on with today’s post, just a quick reminder that tap dancer and recent guest to All the Cats Join In, Andrew Nemr, will be presenting his show, Echoes in Time, tonight at Symphony Space in NYC. Check out the interview with Andrew from last week, and if you’re in NYC, go see the show tonight!
I was shocked the first time a woman told me she was intimidated to dance with me. I thought, Really? Me? But I’m not even that great, and I’m a mellow cat. I’ve since come to realize that anyone who can do a swingout with relative ease can be intimidating to a new dancer. After having the same conversations many times, I’ve developed a couple of standard lines in response to some of the things I hear from follows. Most dancers I know develop some sort of lexicon of catch phrases for all those common conversations. Here are some of mine:
Me: Would you like to dance?
Follow: Umm, I’m not very good.
Me: (In a totally upbeat, non-sarcastic tone of voice) Then I’m glad I asked you to dance, and not if you were very good.
New Follow: (after mucking up) I’m so sorry.
Me: Don’t be, you’re doing great. I have three rules for a good dance. One, we’re both smiling and having a fun. Two, neither of us gets hurt. And three, no one’s ass hits the floor unless its intentional.
I also try to be encouraging to new dancers at the end of a dance without going overboard. I will also let them know they are welcome to find me for a dance anytime, and that if they have any questions or need any help to feel free to ask. There’s a lead in DC, an older gentlemen who’s been dancing since before I was born, who told Susanne after she’d been dancing for a month or so, “Stick with it kiddo. You’re gonna be good.” I don’t know if I have the guts for that level of honesty. Its probably easier hearing that from a kooky older guy, but it impressed me that he was able to pull it off.
I’m wondering what are some of the other regular conversations you have, and what are your stock responses?