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Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Don’t Drink, Eat, And Dance

I am taking adult basic ballet lessons at Jo Emery Ballet School in South Tacoma on Wednesday nights. I just completed my third lesson.

I am your classic beginner’s beginner and I foul stuff up, but I am enjoying it regardless. And I am learning. And what I learned today should be taught in every dance class.

NEVER consume huge quantities of pizza, onion rings, and tater tots BEFORE dance class. EVER.

My hubby was getting his hair cut at the Azarra Salon in Tacoma in the Harmon Building in the heart of downtown on Pacific Avenue this evening. Ah, how convenient, that the salon was just above the Harmon Brewery and Restaurant. And how very convenient that it was a hot day and we had no stove as it caught on fire July 4th (the new stove has not arrived). So, the kiddies and I met hubby and I gorged myself on their delightful Pizza Margherita, filled with gooey, ooey cheese, lush Roma tomatoes, and large pieces of fresh basil. Yum! Of course, being happy hour, appetizers were half price, so I devoured some crispy, enormous onion rings, and washed those down with a Point Defiance IPA. And my son couldn’t finish his tater tots, so I did.

I had to be at ballet in 45 minutes after I ate.

Clearly, I felt stuffed and mildly sick. We got home and I ate four Tums and headed off to class. It was a big class tonight and there was Jo who looked spirited and positively smashing. Bless these people, as I knew I really stunk of garlic, onions, and perspiration. Bless them for talking to me and coming close to me. Hey, if I can smell MYSELF, the poor other dancers must have had quite the odorous experience.

I hung in there, despite the grease swirling in my stomach and my stench. I LOVED the barre exercises. I love it so much I could kiss it and keep it forever! But while it’s important, it ain’t dancing. The floor exercises, the real dancing, started out okay.

Then we did spins.

You can imagine how spinning was for me physically this fine night. Mix that in with spinning the wrong way. Fortunately, there was no disaster, thank God.

We moved into more steps and I got pretty fouled up. But I figured if I could just either have two lefts or two rights, I would be fine. You see, I am also wired backwards. Case in point—I handwrite certain letters and numbers BACKWARDS. Always have. Ask me to handwrite the word, “Mississippi” real time and it will blow your mind.

But despite it all, three things stuck with me at ballet tonight:

1.Jo said, “Don’t over think this. Stop counting and start dancing!” True! Isn’t that true of life? So, I imagined myself as an enormous dancing potato instead of counting and actually got a couple steps right! Maybe I should imagined myself as a giant Tums instead.

2.My daughter asked me how dance class was. I told her I liked it, but the last part was really hard. She said, “Maybe I should come with you to help next time!” Life strikes again! Always accept kind help (thanks fellow dancers and Jo for your tips and help and future thanks to my little Erin!).

3.Don’t eat, drink, and dance in short order.

And the Gritty City Ballerina endures!


Stephanie Frieze said...

Thanks for taking us to class with you, Kim! Keep it up. We are cheering for you!

Kim Thompson said...

Thanks, Stephanie.

Perhaps it would be helpful to have the entire Blog Squad come to class for moral support! Hee, hee.

JosephMcG said...

One thing is for sure: I would make sure I was fasting (for at least seven days and seven nights...)before I came... I started howling and using all kind of words that would turn this post blue if I even thought them right now... because I know that I would have been headed for the men's room by the middle of all that twisting and twirling...
Loved this post, loved this post, loved this post...
Opps, excuse me, I have got to go

Lorraine Hart said...

Ah...there's no teacher quite like experience!

I nearly fell off my chair, thinking about a Blog Squad Ballet!!!! No no no no...we will throw bouquets at your feet...and live our ballerina fantasies vicariously through you...yelling bravo at every move.

I have to go put some Tiger Balm on now! You are my hero in a tutu!

Kim Thompson said...

Hi Joseph and Lorraine:

Sweet, Joseph, I can't imagine you turning the post blue!

Lorraine, I've seen you dance; friend, you could do this, I know!

A Blog Squad ballet. How cool! Okay, I know you are all cringing. Okay, how about a Blog Squad talent show?

Better yet, we should feast and be merry, THEN put on the show!


Stephanie Frieze said...

I say we come and watch YOU dance, Kim, and then eat, drink, & be merry!

Lorraine Hart said...

I'll second that...just give us the date of your performance!

I could not do ballet...because (sob!) I cannot point my toes without cramps...and my big toe is somewhat reminiscent of the hitch-hiking girl in "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues!" I don't think I could support this body on just one toe.

JosephMcG said...

Let me be truthful... on my last retreat, when we were invited to sing along, clap our hands, or dance with the song being played... I immediately got up, went to the side of the room where I would not have to be the center of attention, and danced my way through the song... I enjoyed every moment... ballet, no... creative dance... I am ready, willing, and able

Kim Thompson said...

Well, "family observation" in the first class of the month. I'd be honored to have you guys there sometime as family of course! But, let me get some more work in first!

Lorraine, you would be great at the jazz dance class they have! That looks like a kick!

Kim Thompson said...

Hey, Joseph:

I comments went up about the same time. Weird!

Creative dance--yahoo! Honey, that's what I do when I get stuck in ballet. And it's definitely "creative." I suspect my fine teacher has another word for it, but I am happy with my own description, LOL!

JosephMcG said...

it's not what you look like
when you do what you're doing
it's what you do
when you look like you're doing
what you're doing

Stephanie Frieze said...

Well said, Joseph! Or as the saying goes, "dance like no one is watching."

Kim Thompson said...

Oh, I like that last quote Stephanie! That's PERFECT for me!

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