My long lost writer friend Heidi Dorey (where art thou, Heidi, and why has thou not contributed a post of late?  make haste, dear friend, let your pen find it’s way to brightening our days!  or at least to giving me a break/guest post…) bestowed upon me a Yuletide gift of exquisite taste.  Hearken near, and hear of her generosity.

Y’all, she freakin’ gave us ballroom dancing lessons!! How much does that RAWK???

Anyway, we suck, but that’s OK, we loved it so much we bought more.  Or, rather, we pooled my birthday bounty and a bunch of nice people made it possible with their checks and such.

You would think two half Ironman triathletes would find dancing a breeze, but we learned on day one that this dancing shit will wear you O-U-T.  I glowed, and Eric sweated like a pig.  His face was as red as when I write about his speedo, seriously.  An hour of rumba transformed me from Pamelot to Puffalot.

And our instructors are like freakin’ Nazi’s (which I can appreciate, as the family disciplinarian).  They won’t even let us TALK to each other.  Or drop our arms, excuse me, our frame.  Or look at our feet.  Or stop if we mess up.  Or wear street shoes.  It’s like we’re training for the dorky-white-couple dance-Olympics or something.

Our suede-bottomed dancing shoes, aka our "fairy shoes".

So, as you can tell — extreme physical exercise + rigid discipline — it’s totally our type of thing!  We have five more lessons left, and after that they want us to pay like, oh, a mere trifle for 15 more lessons.  A mere trifle as in $1500.00 smackers. Yes, you read that right.  And with me fresh out of birthdays, too.

Five to go…could we become “proficient” in that amount of time?  And by that I don’t mean ready for Dancing With the Stars, but just good enough that Eric doesn’t yell the F*** word on the dance floor (which we learned is perfectly alright with our instructor Austin, who is not really a Nazi and is actually totally awesome, as long as we are safely practicing in their studio) more than once every ten minutes.

So we asked.

OH NO, the studio manager said.  No, we could not make you a social dancer in such a short time.

We gritted our teeth.  Oh yeah, buddy, just watch us.

So we hatched a plan.  Instead of just squeezing in a lesson, we will only go to a lesson if it is adjacent to a FREE (as in totally without monetary cost) group lesson, and we would attend henceforth all the FREE parties the studio throws to addictify its unsuspecting clientele, until we run out of lessons.

Last Friday, we took Liz (17), her boyfriend, Suz (13), and her friend Alex to a FREE sock hop.  {And I wore a poodle skirt, y’all!}  Only no one else was there!  So, instead, they gave us a FREE group lesson.  And then other people showed up, so we had the party after all.  We’d been stuck on waltz, rumba, tango, and swing up until then, but that night we burst out after our FREE salsa lesson into the merengue and cha cha, too.  Hear us roar!   We took turns dancing with Suz and Alice.  Everyone had a grand time.  And guess what?  Eric didn’t say the F*** word a single time.

Armed with our newfound confidence, I jumped onto itunes and for only $45, I bought whole albums of ballroom dancing music.  We put on our little fairy shoes.  We folded our ping pong table and pushed the weight bench and treadmill back in our game room.  We turned on our music and we DANCED.


So.  We’re leaving now for our FREE group lesson and our expensive private lesson.  Ready to milk every drop of knowledge out of these high-priced instructors.   Because come hell or high water, we are going to be socially acceptable dancers when we finish this program.

So there.


p.s.  If you actually met Austin, you would think I was on crack.  He is probably the nicest, funniest guy in the world.  He can’t help it that his boss is the aforementioned Nazi (with too much hair gell) and the cost of their program requires a second mortgage.  We <3 you, Austin.