Daily Prompt: Let’s Dance

 What are your earliest and fondest memories of dance?

Well I can’t say I remember them fondly but the dance memories that first come to mind would be those tortuous times at school when we had to forgo ‘real’ P.E. for a term and do dancing instead. Endless hours in a hot school hall practising delights such as The Pride of Erin and The Progressive Barn Dance with a little of The Chicken Dance thrown in for humourous relief.

What a cruel thing the progressive barn dance is for a hall full of teens; hot, sweaty ones at that. First of all you have this large circle of hormone riddled boys standing there being hormone riddled boys then you have the girls who have to be passed from one boy to the next until they’ve completed their horrifying journey around the circle and held sweaty hands and been handled by every single one of them.

Oh, unless you were one of the poor girls they considered ugly or dirty or germy and then they’d all laugh about having to hold her hand and try not to or just touch fingertips before pushing her on to the next boy with a laugh and a comment such as – here comes your girlfriend.

Then there were the boys who weren’t in the cool club who were just so shy and nervous and mortified about the whole event that they tried to be gentle and not overbearing which was just so painful.

It was all just really clammy and unpleasant and unnecessary really.

My husband tells me he had to do dance as well at school. I thought it might have just been a country thing but he was a city boy (a westie mind you but still city as far as I’m concerned). He said they all hated it as well and they were pissed off that they had to give up P.E. for a term which was their favourite subject at school. He tells me no one wanted to touch ‘the ugly girls’ (sigh) and that they usually had more boys than girls so some boys would have to pair up with each other and all the other boys would insinuate loudly that they may have  had homosexual tendencies in a manner that only 13-year-old westie boys could.

When it comes down to it I would have rather have been doing trigonometry.

Which for me is saying something.

Definition of a Westie
The term “westie” is often used to associate someone or something with a stereotype. This stereotype depicts people from the outer suburbs as unintelligent, undereducated, unmotivated, unrefined, lacking in fashion sense, working-class or unemployed. Clothing such as flannelette shirts, Ugg boots, leopard-print fabric, Adidas outfits with clear stripes, white singlets are associated with the stereotype, as are the “uniform” of black t-shirt and ripped jeans

Lol – but he’s my little westie.



5 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: Let’s Dance

  1. Sigh.

    It took me years after high school dance class to enjoy dancing again, because the damn activity brought back so many horrible memories. I was one of those “ugly” girls who got pushed from one boy to another or avoided as if I had warts all over my hands. I knew I wasn’t ugly, but being treated like one was humiliating. It made me want to drop out of school when they announced we’d be doing our “dance unit.” But then I broke my leg playing basketball, so I got to sit out the class. It says something when I felt happier about having a broken leg than having to dance.

    • The Department of Education seem to develop endless ways to humiliate children and crush their spirits and Dance lessons were right up there. Another one I hated was – picking teams – for sport. I was good at sport so was always picked early but I just felt so terrible for those few kids left until last that no one wanted.

  2. Were high school dances mandatory? I don’t recall having to go to any – or to any dance class, save for the Prom…which I didn’t attend either. (I wanted to, because I knew it would mom happy, but boys still didn’t interest me, so…)

    I do recall going to one dance during those years, now that I think about it, and all that I recall was that I was wearing a red velvet tank top with either no bra or a very slight one. I felt very daring – and extremely nervous as well.

    • Well we don’t have Prom here so I didn’t have to worry about that.

      These dance classes would have been when I was about 13 I guess and there wasn’t actually a dance at the end of all the classes either, it was just part of the sport curriculum so yes mandatory. My kids had to do it as well and that’s just within the last ten years so the powers that be must think there’s some point to it.

  3. Oh my god, the Pride of Erin! And the Heel and Toe…man, that brings back memories. We had to learn bush dances in primary school thought, not high school. We had some hefty dairy-farm bred lads at our school, and all us younger girls used to look forward to dancing with them because they’d pick us up and swing us through the air whenever you had to spin around. Must’ve been pretty cute to watch these 11 and 12-year-old boys flinging squealing 6-year-olds all over the hall. Incidentally, one of those boys occasionally goes pigging out near my parent’s place and I tell ya what, I’d still let him spin me around any day of the week.

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