1. Strange thread title, right? Well, let me catch you up.

    So I have this thing, my "trademark" if you will, where I always bow to my follow after a dance. It's my way of thanking her for the dance. If I'm wearing a hat, I remove it as well.

    Anyway, I was at the weekly "official" swing dance from my scene, and I asked a lady to dance whom I don't see often. I think I may have danced with her once before. Anyway, as soon as we got on the dance floor, she said, "Don't bow." I was a bit taken aback, so I asked her why not, and she said "because it's weird." Before I could respond, she said, "I'm pretty sure all the follows talk about it. We all talk about it to each other. Stop doing it."

    In slight shock, I just kept dancing with her and didn't say a word to her for the rest of the dance, simply wondering what the problem was. "It's weird?" Is that a bad thing? Does it just make her (and apparently all the other follows) feel uncomfortable or what? It's something I've been doing pretty much ever since I started dancing, and I've never heard any complaints. But apparently they all complain about it to each other behind my back. At least I appreciate that someone was finally honest about it to me.

    Anyway, now I'm just overanalyzing it. So here's a question to all of you follows: Have you ever been bowed to by a lead at the end of a dance? If so, did it make you feel uncomfortable? Why or why not?
  2. Siggav

    Siggav Moderator Staff Member

    I've never been bowed to by a lead at the end of a dance, I think it would feel a bit weird. Oddly formal so it would feel distancing if it had been a really good dance. After a bad dance it'd make me feel even weirder I think and average to good dance probably least weird there.

    It's unusual so not what I'm used to. I don't know. However if the follows where you dance don't like it and think it's weird I'd probably just stop doing it at least when I'm dancing there.

    Are you bowing by just nodding your head a bit at them or a full bow from the waist? If it's a full bow complete with arm movements and stuff then I totally get why they don't like it. It's very attention grabbing and theatrical, very much not a normal social interaction if you're doing a big theatrical bow.
  3. bia

    bia Well-Known Member

    I agree with Siggav, especially in the swing context. At a formal ball, after a Viennese waltz, a bow to the partner would feel quite appropriate. At a ballroom competition, a bow to the audience is expected. But at an informal social dance, it's a clash of styles. There's no problem with your intentions, but a smile and a "thank you" would express the same meaning in a more context-appropriate manner. Kudos to your partner for speaking up -- it was generous on her part.
  4. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

    Yeah, sorry but I have to agree. It's kind of like you're trying too hard to be quirky or overly formal or something (hard to choose which without seeing it). In 18 years of dancing different styles of partner dancing, I don't think I've ever been bowed to.
  5. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    tip the hat slightly and say "thank you maam" in your best country drawl

    they will let you bow after a few rounds of that
    twnkltoz likes this.
  6. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    * will totally bow to twnk when we finally dance together*
  7. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

    I will be totally disappointed if you don't.
    Mr 4 styles likes this.
  8. Generalist

    Generalist Active Member

    Bowing is very weird in a social dance environment -- especially in swing dances. Sometimes in ballroom I will give a little curtsy to the ladies and they usually reciprocate -- and they all like it.
  9. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Boy, don´t stop it. These girls think you aren´t cool enough. But the opposite is true. You should expand it: optimize your 50s outfit, hair, shoes, pants, politeness.

    And of course: make yourself scars! Seems as if it was to easy to get this bow. Let only a really small number enjoy it. Better relinquish some music, dances, and girls than throwing pearls for free.

    Around here (Hamburg, Germany) vintage parties really are in. Turn the tables, organize your own stylish event: bowing, asking, returning strictly required, also proper outfit.

    And only invite a really small number!

    ocean-daughter and Smooth Dancer like this.
  10. Loki

    Loki Well-Known Member

    Weird or not depends on context. In WCS, formal bowing is out of context. Try a nod and a wink if you want to do something a little different.
  11. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    as a matter of personal preference, a slight bow wouldn't freak me out (I might even find it charming depending upon the guy's other attributes), but a hat off, parallel to the floor bow at a social would seem a tad...eccentric.... to me...it might make me wary...just a bit disproportionate to the formality of the the event...that being said, I do appreciate a gentleman offering the escort back to my seat ....
    Gorme likes this.
  12. I do ECS, not WCS. Not sure if that would make any difference though.
  13. That's me! :p
  14. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    right....and some women find eccentric endearing, some find it creepy...you take your chances :)
  15. Good point...maybe I'm just dancing with too many "normal" women.
  16. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    dunno... I think there are a few normal women who aren't afraid of a little eccentricity...at least I hope so...beyond that, telling someone else what not to do like that lady did, was...rude...even if she was arrogant enough to think she had your best interest at heart, there was a better way to say it...ie "you know jon, your'e a sweet man and fine to dance with, but I have been hearing that it skeeves some of the ladies out that you bow...they just don't know what to make of it, I don't mean to tell you what to do butI thought you might find it useful to know"
    Siggav likes this.
  17. DerekWeb

    DerekWeb Well-Known Member

    At least the ladies are talking about you. ;)
  18. Gorme

    Gorme Active Member

    If the OP were friends with all these ladies then they'd view it as quirky.
  19. dbk

    dbk Well-Known Member

    You know it's weird. You do it because it's weird - you call it your "trademark," after all. And a lot of people don't like it when people make a point to do weird things in order to be special. (That's how it comes across to someone with this opinion).

    Up to you whether you want to take their opinion into consideration.

    IMO, it's worse that you're dancing with a hat on! I assume you remove your hat to be polite, but... isn't it impolite to wear a hat indoors?
  20. TemptressToo

    TemptressToo Member

    I curtsy, ballet style, at the end of a dance. Some people have no personal flavor... ;)

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