I am in tech this week for an opera that I am the assistant designer for. And it has been one hell of a week, and it is only Wednesday! 13 hour days are always brutal, and when those hours are spent in a dark theatre or in the deep recesses of the theatre in the wardrobe room, it can become really surreal. The show is going well, and it is really beautiful visually, but I am looking forward to opening day so I can breath a little. Had a funny moment though, on Monday as I was loading the costumes in, the theatre next to us was loading in Chita Rivera's The Dancer's Life, and as I walked out onto the loading dock, I watched one of the road crew wheel a road box into my car. My poor little car! He looked down and my front bumper, eyes wide, and then looked up at me, mouth agape. "I did not just watch you do that, did I?!?!" I said in mock horror. It only scratched the bumper, and although my car is not pristine, it is not a mess of scrapes and scratches either. But it was not a big deal. He kept apologizing, and asking if I wanted him to get his production manager. It was really no big deal, and I told him so. He offered to at least buy me a cup of coffee, to which I replied "You are loading a show, I am loading a show, and we are going to be running around like maniacs. But tell you what. If you manged to catch me again while I am loading, you can buy me a coffee with a few adjectives before it. Ok?" He agreed, and I continued loading. When we finished and I came out to move my car, he was standing at my car with his production manager. looking at the front bumper. She apologized and asked if I wanted to file a claim. I said no, it was too much work for so little a scratch and to please, stop worrying about it. She then said that she would give me free tickets to any performance that I wanted of the show. As many tickets as I wanted. Wow. That so rocks. So I asked for two tickets to Saturday's matinee and they took my information and I'll be seeing Chita dance her stuff Saturday afternoon.
I invited S to the show, but he may be in Montreal at the festival (of which I can't go because of the opera.... grrrr.....) but even if he is here he said I should take someone who would actually enjoy the the show. So I am taking my mom. Yea!
However, this crazy tech week schedule does not mean that I am not tango-ing this week! Oh no! After working from 9:30 am to 10:45 pm last night, I went over for the last 45 minutes of the Odd Tuesday Milonga in Cambridge and dance with my S and S2. I kind of felt like a rock star, breezing in for the last bit of the night and breezing out. Although only getting a taste of tango made me want more, despite the exhaustion that was turning into punchy hyperactivity. The place was packed and as always, the best dancers were there. As I was looking around at about 5 of my favorite leaders, I was really wishing that I had more time, or that the milonga went later so that I could dance longer. But the taste that I had was worth it.
There was one moment that I wonder at myself about. A good leader, P, who is the boyfriend of one of S's favorite followers, was standing by the door. S kept urging me to go ask him to dance, but I was really reluctant to do so because I don't actually know him. I've seen him dance, I am guessing that he knows I am S's girlfriend, but I become stubbornly resistant to asking someone to dance whom I have not danced with or talked with. I think I am still in this "I'm a beginner and not yet good enough" mode. S and I were having dinner with some friends the other night I made mention at some point that I wanted to be good now. Not soon. Now.
Hyperactive sense of achievement I guess.
But I just could not handle the thought of walking up to a good leader, asking them to dance, and then sucking ass. Being turned down does not bother me, I can handle that, but asking someone and then not being perfect? That is scarier to me.
There is another issue that keeps bumping around in my head. S and I had a conversation over the weekend about tango and its precision and emotion. I feel that it is an emotional dance. Full of life and passion and movement, the connection, the communication, it is all emotional to me. He felt it was more about precision with emotion secondary in the dance. Which explains some about when we dance, but it made me a little sad. I always enjoy dancing with S, because it is him. It is an added level for me when I dance with him than with any other leader. But I think it is not the same for him. Maybe because I am not good yet. He says that there are moments that he enjoys dancing with me, but I don't get the sense that he enjoys dancing with me regardless of how I am dancing or how he is dancing. I wonder if that is a male/female thing, or just me being overly sensitive....
More ramblings soon, but I have some alterations to get done now!
I had no idea the flurry of e-mails and comments this was going to cause, so I feel the need to clarify my earlier comment about S and his preferences in dancing. Firstly, let me say that S is a lovely leader, and although he has been dancing for a little over a year, he is well beyond a normal 1 year social dancer as he is a perfectionist and really threw himself into learning, much as I have. He did not slight me, nor was he putting me down. It was a straight-forward discussion that I started in regards to the fact that I felt as though I enjoyed our dancing more than he does. I have only been dancing for about 4 or 5 months, most leaders when they dance with me put me at about a year or a little more, but I still make mistakes, miss leads, and sometimes lose things completely. This means that my leaders have to compensate for me. My guess is that the other leaders I dance with are not going to comment on this and thus only tell me how much they enjoy dancing with me. One leader, S2, will compliment me on the occasions when I actually contribute to the dance as opposed to just following. My S, however, is brutally honest with me when I ask for feedback or open conversations about my dancing. Doesn't mean it doesn't smart sometimes, and doesn't mean that I am not curious about others who are in relationships and dance when one is at a higher level than the other.
I am not looking for sympathy, nor am I fishing for compliments, and I certainly am not bashing S in any fashion. It was simply a conversation that stuck in my head and I was curious as to how others dealt with this issue. I work in the arts, and I used to be a dancer, so for me, dancing is emotion. And tango appeals to that side of me. S is more responsive to the precision of tango, and that is the discussion that we had. Differences are good, and being able to discuss the differences that bother you is also good. I do appreciate all of the constructive comments that have been posted and e-mailed to me, some of your advice has been incredibly helpful to me, so thank you. But please do not think that this was a "Oh poor me" moment, it was just something that was rolling around in my head and I decided to let it out.
Oi. I need a glass of wine now! ;-)