Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Not, strictly, Dancing.

Despite my aversion to the dance, I am prepared to make cameo 
appearances at Birthday Barn Dances, and even wear a stupid hat,
 provided that an adequate supply of alcohol is available. However, 
as you can see, I do not guarantee to enjoy it !

Olympic cyclist Victoria Pendleton's efforts to win Strictly Come Dancing ended on Sunday, when she received a unanimous and well-deserved vote of no confidence from the judges.

 That the Queen of the Track failed to metamorphose in to a Dancing Queen, didn't surprise me because bumping, barging and aggressive use of the elbows, essential prerequisites for making one's presence known in Keirin racing, count for little in the frothy, fixed-smile, environment of the ballroom.

The world of Strictly mirrors my own short dancing career in that I ,too, cavorted to the music of  proper dance bands, and it was at these dances that me and the lads congregated in search of girls, but, being inherently shy, spent the most of the evening tanking up at the bar. Come the last waltz, some 'heroes', who hadn't spoken to a girl all night, were incapable of standing, while the borderline legless ones would drape themselves over some unfortunate female, hoping that she would prove sturdy enough to prevent them collapsing head first in to her bosom beneath the dead weight of an overdose of Brew Eleven bitter. I never really understood why girls went to dances.

I eventually moved on from dances to Jazz Clubs, where the music was far better and dancing expertise unnecessary, although I did pioneer a specialty dance, which consisted of me smiling inanely and running up and down, very, very, fast on the spot, in front of any girl I fancied. As this was always performed with a pint glass in one hand, the results were unpredictable and disastrous spillages were frequent. It never really caught on.

I gave up dancing soon after my marriage, when my wife, who likes dancing, ordered me to undertake formal training. My feet, however, have idiosyncratic tendencies, and have always been inclined to please themselves when confronted with music, and on this occasion behaved outrageously, causing the instructor grave offence. During the Chachacha he lost his cool completely, grabbed me round the waist and flounced me round the floor bawling instructions at the top of his voice, greatly amusing the rest of the students, who stopped dancing to watch my abysmal performance.

I am normally an easy-going person, with a penchant for amusing self deprecation,but there are limits, and quickly achieving a very high stress level, I muttered something like "If you don't pack it in you little sh*t, I'll deck you." (he was little and a sh*t) I managed to break away and made it to the bar, before heading home, and apart from Dad Dancing and 'YMCA' on New Years Eve have scarcely taken to the dance floor since.


  1. Not enjoying it at all I would say Alan :)

  2. Is that supposed to be a Stetson? And I believe this is our first glimpse of Mme Escargot. what is it with men and dancing - do they think it's cissy to be able to move to a rhythm?
    When I were a lass in Brighton I met many forgettable young men at the Regent Ballroom - now, sadly, Boots the Chemist.

  3. Oh, what I wouldn't give to see your special running up and down on the spot dance.

    What a girl magnet you must have been . . .

    By the way, did Mme Snail know J.R. Ewing was going to be making a surprise appearance?