Friday, September 26, 2008

Ryan Church can ballroom dance

I won a dance contest once.

No, it’s true. I was doing "The Twist" at a Lansing Lugnuts game. They gave bottles of Sprite to people dancing the best. I was pretty proud of that.

So when my wife wanted me to take an adult education dance class with her, I figured it would be pretty easy.

After all, I can do "The Chicken Dance" and "YMCA," even did the special Florida Marlins version of "The Macarena" during Game Six of the 1997 World Series.

However, I learned at the first class that there is a big difference between ballpark dancing and ballroom dancing.

It’s pretty tricky stuff. There’s a lot of backward walking, and the girl has to do what the guy wants, and my wife is not familiar with this role. We keep stepping on each other’s feet.

They started to introduce some trickier steps in the second class, which was bad because I had not yet mastered the first step. I wasn’t the only guy having problems. When they turned us loose, the room looked like the plastic players scattering around one of those old electric vibrating football games.

The basic steps where hard enough, but the instructors then introduced sort of a twist-around move. I could see right away that someone was going to get hurt, and we called the instructor over when we just couldn’t get it.

Finally, he said I should try it without my wife. I nailed it on the first try. The move was instantly familiar — then I figured out why. It was just like being a baserunner, trying to run past a fielder and avoid being tagged. It clicked instantly.

So excitedly said this to my wife, expecting her to understand immediately. Instead she shot me a "How the hell am I supposed to know that?" look.

So I tried to explain, and demonstrated several times, even pretending to be the fielder waving the glove and asked her to walk by and avoid the tag.

Let’s just say we’ll need to practice some more.

Then I was following the Mets-Cubs game on Thursday on the Crane Pool Forum, and read the guys going nuts about Ryan Church amazingly avoiding the tag to score the big run. I later saw the video and recognized the move instantly — he was doing the waltz pivot. And very well, too. Ryan Church would pass my dance class.

We all know this is the final weekend at Shea, and there will be much weeping, even more if the Mets don’t make the playoffs. I’m confident they will. But let’s use this week’s Deezo Friday Five to look at some of the cool souvenirs of the Shea’s final season.

1) I snagged a sweet Johan Santana jersey with the Shea patch on eBay, and was even able to wear it to see Johan pitch against the vile Yankees. It didn’t bring him much luck, but I looked great!

2) My friend Greg went to see Billy Joel’s Last Play at Shea. And because he is kind and knows I’m a Billy fan, he snagged me this sweet pin.
3) I saw this cap on the Mets Web site earlier in the season, and figured I’d grab one at the Big Game. But then I saw the awesome "Final Subway Series at Shea" caps and grabbed one of those. A month later, had a sale, and I was able to get the original desired cap shipped home for less than what it cost at the game. I’ve been wearing it all week.

4) One of my proudest moments in home design was creating a wooden rack to hold my official baseball collection. I made two of them, actually. One holds balls from each of the All-Star Games, and the other has some of the balls commemorating special events. Naturally, I pounced on this ball that the Mets are using all season. Well, "pounced" meaning I bought it with the above cap in the sale. Items in the Shea gift store seemed to be marked up a bit high.

5) Christmas is not too far away, and we’ll need to honor Shea with this special ornament. The Baseball Room has a special tree after my wife banned all baseball decorations from the main tree in the living room.


Bob said...

Dave, the opening of this post was hilarious. Good stuff. My wife and I are going to take ballroom dancing. I can relate to the not used to following the husband's lead. I chortled at that.

lori said...

Hi Dave,
Perhaps if you went to a dance studio where the classes are smaller and more personalized you would have had an easier time.
Come try a free lesson at our friendly intimate studio in downtown Utica
The teachers are qualified and fun to dance and learn with.