Tuesday, February 19, 2008

question answered; the Fool says something silly

The Fool and I were over at Ed's tonight rehearsing tunes for a contra dance the three of us have agreed to play in March.
He and Ed were brainstorming jigs and Ed played one, and then the Fool tried to think of one, but failed, and said, "I was thinking of the one that sounds like the one you played, but not the one that isn't."

And now, a reader question concerning contra dancing.
"Hubby and I were looking at things to do here, and found a Barn Dance thing in Kansas City that has contra dancing and folk music and (I think they said) old time fiddle music. Now, I love me some fiddling, but I'm an introvert almost to the point of being violent about it. And this dance thing mentioned lessons and audience participation and scary things like that. So, in your experience, how pushy are people at these things about getting everyone involved? What I'm hoping is to be able to go and find a corner somewhere and tap my feet and be able to knit. What do you think? I don't want to be a party pooper, but to hear live music, wow."

In my experience, contra dancers are a very friendly bunch ... but they do generally know how to take a hint. So if you pick a corner and are sitting there listening, don't be surprised if people come up and ask you to dance - probably more than once. All you have to say is, "No thank you, I'm sitting out tonight," and eventually word will get around that you are not dancing and prefer to listen to the music.
However, you may have to sit and chat with folks for a few minutes who just want to make sure you're having a good time and you're not feeling left out or lonely.
I've been to several dances where people, for one reason or another, are not doing all that much dancing, and are instead listening or visiting with folks. No one's going to harangue you.
Go have a good time.

The Fool and I are off to Pittsburgh and playing a gig in Indianapolis Saturday night with our other band, the Roarsharks, with caller Steve Bennett (he's a lot of fun and someone we don't see hardly enough of.)


AnneMarie said...

re: not dancing at a dance.

Unless there is a huge disparity of gender (i.e WAY more men or Way more women - it happens either way), you will likely to be able to sit, listen, visit, knit.

I'm a long time dancer, with a mildly cranky right shoulder and left knee so I frequently sit out the 2nd half of a dance, listening to music and knitting. So if someone asks me to dance, I just reply, 'I'm going to knit this one out.' Seems to work okay for me.

That said, square and contra dancing are great for introverts - You just dance. You have to listen to the instructions; then you are dancing. No actual conversation is required. I have a friend who likes to carry on a disjointed conversation up or down the hall which I find VERY distracting. So I just say - 'Hey, I can't talk and dance. I make too many mistakes.' That's actually quite rare though.

So go - have fun - take your knitting and listen to the music!

Anonymous said...


Hubby is trying now to get a sitter.

Tola said...

or what about wearing a big ace bandage around your leg?

Anonymous said...

tola - nice idea, I never thought of that.

annmarie - "knit this one out"? I snorted.

FF and Meg - thanks so much for your input. Hubby got a sitter, and we're off. I can't wait; this is going to be so cool!