Making the Tango Honeymoon Last, Pt. 1

Making the Tango Honeymoon Last - for you, and for other dancers too.

Part I: Vignette
"At the Crossroads . . ."

Maestra: Grande! Grande! (exasperated sigh) You dance too small, too quiet. You hold too much back.
Me (looking at my feet and feeling disproportionately defensive by her remark): Well, I get plenty of dances at the milonga. (I admit, not one of my better moments.)
Maestra: (sigh) That is because you are simpatico.

Despite the sound of it, Maestra was not criticizing me, or giving me a backhanded compliment with that description, however nor was she complimenting me. Her appraisal was almost completely neutral. I thought about that remark for weeks.

What did she mean? Was I only getting dances because I was nice? Did she mean my dancing wasn't very good? Was I coasting? Did leaders just feel sort of bad for me and that's why they asked me to dance?

Finally I came to a realization about myself and about what tango means to me. If I get danced as much as I do because I'm comfortable, or because I'm nice, or because I'm easy to please, or because, as my husband suggests, I giggle any time I dance to anything - then I think that is a good thing.

I asked myself the question, if I had to choose between being asked to dance because I was a skilled dancer, or because I was a kind dancer - which would I choose? (Obviously, I would like to be both - but if I had to choose.)

If I could only be one or the other, I would rather be kind.

Sometimes I think that can be the harder path to walk. The rules are fuzzier. The risks and vulnerability feel far greater. But the pay off is out of this world.

1 comment:

Tango Therapist said...

You are both, and I love dancing with you for that. You grew into skilled. Growing into "kind" is too late for many.