Discussion in 'General Dance Discussion' started by Phil Owl, Mar 29, 2003.
What a coincidence . . . I have FS's Best of CD in my truck as we speak (type).
What debate??? FDR?
1988 Bentsen-Quayle debate:
Quayle tried to defend his youth by saying JFK was only 43 when he became president.
Bentsen pounced with his unforgettable challenge to a quivering Quayle: "I knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. And, Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy."
I love you for your second pet peeve Jenn!!! And the idea of having fun that goes with it. I didn't want to bring it up as I thought I might be one of the odd few, but since you are a follower and have opened the pandora's box I have my chance to rant a bit.
I am actually going to the monthly Ithaca social dance tonight and this thread got me thinking. I think the main one for me is "women who don't take the initiative". I don't know about others but I love it when someone asks me to dance. They are saying that they want to have some fun with me for the next couple minutes. It's a compliment and I wish more women would do it!! Along with that is the idea of having fun. If you're just sitting for dance after dance I'm not sure how much fun you can have.
I wonder if I should go for the beginner's lesson tonight and see if I can encourage more people to our way of thinking. We'll see if by 8:00 I'm ready after just getting back at home around 6:30 from work...
My biggest pet peeve is peole who are dancing LOD dances but dancing them in a strictly straight line with a curve at the corners. Smooth/Standard patterns zig and zag diagonally sometimes and I'd *love* to actually see this happen.
My experience in Atlanta was that the more avanced dancers (silver+) did do this while the "same level" here in Orlando mostly do not. I'm not sure if it's a regional thing, or what, but it gets kind of hard to manouever and use good floorcraft when you have no place to go but *into* someone.
Another pet peeve is people jamming the dance floor for slow songs and clumping up so that you can't get around them. If you are moving slowly get in the slow lane for pete's sake. If you are going to do fwd fwd side together, move it away from the wall!!!!! Quit hugging the wall!!!! The smaller your stride, the further towards the center you need to be.
For example: Couple A has a long stride - they need more room to move and not bump into people. Couple B has a short stride (maybe beginners, maybe not) - they don't need as much room in the same amount of time as Couple A. Couple A doesn't want to mow down Couple B, so Couple A moves towards the inner lane/center and makes the circle 3 times around in the time it took Couple B to go once around.
Imagine if you will 3 lanes plus the center:
/ / / / \ \ \ \
| F | M | S | C | S | M | F |
| A | E | L | E | L | E | A |
| S | D | O |N | O | D | S |
| T | I | W |T | W | I | T |
| | U | |E | | U | |
| L | M | L R |L | M | L |
| A | | A | | A | | A |
| N | | N | | N | | N |
| E | | E | | E | | E |
\___\__\___\__ /__ /__/__/
Just remember that if you have to make a choice between preserving your perfect 45 degree angles and not cutting people off, the people behind you would really, really prefer you choose the latter.
This "lane" business is an unrealistic idealization in most contexts, anyway. In reality many rectangular floors don't allow for it, as inside "lanes" vanish at the narrow end of the floor, and many of the dancers at a social dance lack the navigation skills to stay in "lanes" even if they remember what they are. Meanwhile the guidance for non-progressive dancers to stay in the center works just so long as they keep a sharp eye out for the "advanced" progressive dancers sweeping through the center every 10-15 seconds to bypass the slower dancers in the outside "lanes".
I agree with Jon, the theory and practice of social dancing are vastly, vastly different. It's weird, though, every now and then you get some insight as to why a particular move might exist. Cutoff on all sides? It's runaround time!
It would help if people had at least some small clue of the proper dance lane etiquette, though. Sheesh! When you go to public ballroom dances here, you'l literally have newbies in the outer lane! :shock: What the heck! Aren't their teachers doing anything? These people aren't trying to be difficult. They just don't know.
About dancing in Orlando, DancingMommy, here's my observation. There are a few large studios, which tend toward social dancing. I won't name names, but you can PM me if you want. There is one studio focused on social dance. For the most part, their students are clueless about lane of dance. They know about line of dance, though. There's another studio, which recently opened, and I'm not sure of the quality of instruction there. There's a third studio, which claims to teach competition dancing, and has students with beautiful smiles and even frames, but hideous footwork.
Then there are independent studios/teachers, whose largest student base is in group lessons. Then there are a large number of people who take no lessons at all, and bounce from dance to dance, taking the "free" private lessons beforehand.
It's not surprising you don't see a lot of good floorcraft. *shrug*
I'm with you on this one
I know some of the studios of whom you speak. 8) I used to teach at one that is now defunct. Thank God I'm gone from there....... My dancing actually got WORSE rather than better
As for this, I understand where you are coming from Jon, but here we have a dance and the floor is HUGE HUGE HUGE - my house could fit in it - and there is hardly room to take a step because the folks who are there (for the most part)
A) dance in clumps
B) have no clue about floorcraft
C) cut other dancers off (see above)
and a few other things I won't rant about.
Not to mention that every time a slow dance is played every yokel takes the floor trying to show off their fancy "gold level" moves without paying attention to who's around them. They slam into everyone and glare at those trying to utilize the floor in the way it was intended as if they were somehow in the wrong for trying to "travel LOD" rather than allow these "stars" to do their "routines".
The thing that really pisses me off about the above is that the dancers who are hogging the floor aren't even COMPETING dancers. YET, their instructors teach them advanced choreography like it was social dance. Bad teachers! :evil:
Hubby and I can't even get through three basic steps without being crowded off the floor by someone flailing their arms and skirts in our faces or doing some "stop in the middle of the lane" picture line. YIPES.
Here's the kicker... For standard dancers, hubby and I are considered SHORT! I'm 5'2" and he barely scrapes 5'6". Most of the other daners on the floor have these tiny strides even though they are a good 6'+. We can "out stride" them, but mostly get run down because they aren't looking around where they are going (as in pay attention to the short people in FRONT of you). Or when they do some kind of backing up thing and the follow doesn't alert her leader that there's someone behind them. I can't tell you how many times we've been mowed down simply because the "tallies" aren't watching where they are going.
That said, I really hate it when young punks who think they are God's gift to rhythm/latin start cutting one off on the floor. Imagine dancing in your spot and suddenly you have some junior who thinks they are hot suddenly jab you in the eye doing a fancy arm styling and then not even bother to say sorry. And then give *you* a nasty look because you wer even 10 feet away from them. RRRRRRR :evil: And then try to retaliate towards you because you caused them to look bad... UGH. Teenagers. </end rant>
Floorcraft is not something that is very much stressed in this neck of the woods although flashy "moves" seem to be the order of the day.
Ironically, it's usually the inside lane that's open to run.
I've had the same experience as DM. Best of all, when your working your tail off on floorcraft, inevitably one of the slower couples will back against line of dance, then shoot you a nasty look when you pull up just short, even though you manage to avoid them.
Actually there's one fella around these parts who is very, very bad about running into ladies. He actually backed down line of dance and kicked one of my follows with a ronde motion. Grrr. Whenever I get near him, I always try to get my back between him and the follow. If he wants to hit me, fine ... he'll take more damage than I will, so I can't say I really care.
My pet peeve is the people who only dance with the people in their group because they don't want to dance down to someone else's level. Everyone has to start somewhere and they were in the same position at one time. If they are just going to dance exclusively with themselves they might as well not even go to the dance.
Hi SwinginAngel! Welcome to the forums!
Welcome to the Dance Forums SwinginAngel!! I completely agree with you. I don't know your exact situation, but playing the devils advocate here...sometimes groups form naturally as people are comfortable hanging around with those that they know. I also know quite a few people who find it uncomfortable to ask people for a dance so once they have their group they settle down to those select few.
Thanks for the welcome pygmalion and sagitta.
I know groups form. There is a whole group of people, a community if you will, who attend the dance events regularly. Many of these people make it a point to ask different people to dance. There is a sub-group within the community who only dance with themselves at every event. I am part of my school's swing dance club and when we attend an event we dance with each other and people outside of the club. I am not saying they shouldn't dance with each other at all, just that they should be more inclusive.
I agree, SwinginAngel. There's nothing worse than getting dressed and going out to dance, only to be excluded by all the cliques there. Maybe groups form naturally, but somebody in those groups has the business to actively try to include new people. You're right.
Not much to add. I have experienced every peeve listed so far I think. In one way it is good to hear. I live in Tokyo, and had not done much dancing before coming here. I was thinking that the dancers here were especially ignorant, stupid, rude, and selfish, but it seems that these behaviors break cultural barriers. In retrospect, I guess I guy should have know that. Afterall, I suppose there are going to be both good-mannered and bad-mannered people everywhere.
I dance with every (sober) person who asks me. I don't mind beginners at all; I throw in simple things that look good and make them feel better dancers, try to make up for leaders' mistakes and give clues, not directions. What I hate is when some guy asks you to dance, brings you in the middle of the floor and says, "Now you teach me because I don't know how." :evil: I'm not a teacher! I'm not a leader! I can't do even basic step for both of us! At least try to do something - you've seen what other dancers do. Hey, it takes two to tango :doh:
Oh yeah, something funny happened to me a couple of weeks ago. I was at my favorite club, talking to my friends, drinking water, taking a break after 3 hours of salsa-non-stop. One guy I've never seen before walked up to me and said in commanding voice, "my friend is very shy, and he thinks you're the best dancer here, so go there and ask him to dance." I don't mind beginners, but hey, it was just too much for me to handle! I was tired , and he seemed rude too, but I smiled and said that I'll be glad to dance with his friend if he asks me. He made a face, said "nevermind" and walked away. What's up with that?
I guess, my pet peeves are rude and unreasonable people.
i could not agree more with this! I drive 75 miles to go dancing and when I get there, there are the "people by the door" (the ones that think they own the place) and there are the "people in the back" (the ones that are open to dancing with everyone and are learning and just really ENJOY it! I've been dancing about 6 months and I've gotten better, so I'm trying to "make my move" to THE door... it's so hard to walk up to someone and actually get the nerve up to ask them to dance when you KNOW they're probably thinking, "who the heck are you?" Luckily, I've been fortunate enough to not get turned down, but it's just so sad that we have to be so intimidated... I guess, if they don't want to dance with me, I probably wouldn't want to dance with them either.
I just don't get what's up with that "I'm better than you are" attitude. We all started as beginners and the only way to truly get better is to dance with those more experienced and better than you are! Give the rookies a chance. I always make it a point to dance with the newbies because I still remember how it felt.
Also... A smile goes a long way.
That brings up another issue: beginners.
Not all beginners, just the types that don't want to learn or want to dance without learning. For instance, I was trying to help my dad learn how to lead east coast swing and he kept grabbing my fingers while he was turning me which hurt :? . He didn't want to listen to me. He felt that since he was a beginner I was supposed to just go along with whatever he did, which I tried to, to an extent. I tried to explain to him that the follower is a person who you need to have consideration for. He countered that he couldn't think about the turns right now because he was trying to get the footwork down. I told him that if was going to do the turns he needed to do them correctly (especially if he is hurting his partner) so he wouldn't have to relearn how to do it later. It was so frustrating because he didn't want to be taught how to do it by someone who knew how to lead and he didn't want to take suggestions. He just wanted to learn on his own which would be fine except it is a social dance and he didn't know how to connect with the other person. He didn't want to dance with anyone else because he was a beginner but he didn't want to be taught anything at the same time. Next time he comes here I am going to bring him to a dance with a lesson beforehand.
There is also a guy at my school who I've danced with at least ten times. He has been dancing sporadically for a year, but the only thing he does is the basic step. Step, step, rock step. That is all he will do for the whole song every time and to make it worse he doesn't even do it to the music. He does it the same way every time. If someone wants to do anything else they have to backlead it. I did that a couple times but I it was hard because he would be trying to hold a conversation and if I tried to turn he would think I wasn't interested in his conversation or that I was bored. It wasn't that. I just wanted to dance and when I feel the song coursing through my body I just have to do something!
These are not really pet peeves of mine, but they weren't my favorite dance experiences either.
Hmm. I don't want to get too far off the topic here, but there are things you can do, especially in ECS, to keep it interesting for you. For example, if he's doing a single swing -- step, step, rock step -- you can do double -- touch step, touch step, rock step. Or you can add in kick-ball-changes. Or you can add in swivels, or sailor shuffles, or arm styling. It doesn't all have to be boring for you.
Separate names with a comma.