After taking most of January off to let my back recover and settle down, I kicked off the 2010 blues event calendar with a trip down to Statesboro. The Swing Cat Society affiliated with Georgia Southern University put together a 2 day event – Friday night dances, 5 hours of classes on Saturday, and Saturday evening dances. The classes were specifically geared towards blues beginners, taught by Evin and Huy.
Originally I was dithering about whether to go down. Though I love Evin dearly, I’ve done beginning blues with her a few times now and wasn’t really interested in a long drive for another repeat class. Eventually Bert convinced me to go, since he was DJing and it sounded like a few ATL folks would make it. I set about pestering a few non-dancer friends about going, and managed to sucker both RJ and Ross to accompany me. Seeing as how I’ve been trying to get basically any of my non-dancer friends to get into blues for a while, this was a big win.
I could ramble on, but the short of it is that I had a blast. The level of dancing was a little on the low side (surprise, surprise, beginner workshop!) but there were plenty of more advanced leads to keep things interesting. Many of the beginning dancers were also very fun to dance with – a lot of folks had lindy background and strong fundamentals, and therefore took to blues like fishees to water.
• Steve from Florida made it up, and he’s always fabulous to dance with. He makes me move in ways that I didn’t actually know I could move – sometimes I’ll be dancing with him and all of the sudden be dipped in a direction I’ve never dipped before. Never had a dance with him that wasn’t excellent. I repaid him for his awesomeness by clocking him in the face during a dance where he and Bert were trading me off… but it serves them right for using me so cruelly.
• Cole was probably the best “beginner” blues dancer I met. His drag blues were fucking incredible, even though he swore it was his first time doing any blues at all. I felt like we moved around the floor like one person – it was wonderful.
• Patrick from Macon was my other pleasant surprise of the weekend. It sounds like we’ve been to a few of the same events but never managed to intersect until this time around. He’s been trying to put together a monthly blues dance in his hometown, and after meeting him this weekend I’ll definitely be trying to make it as often as possible. Not only is he a super-fun guy whose tastes parallel mine (blues varietals, scotch, women…) but we also have great dance-chemistry. I can’t really point to one single thing that make our dances together awesome, but as a whole we just “click.”
• So I don’t forget again: Charlie is Megan’s husband who I met a Christabel for the first time. Very very impressed by how fast he’s coming along, and he’s a nice guy to boot.
So much for not rambling! Phew! Anyway, the weekend was phenomenal. My knees and back behaved fairly well, though I kept myself dosed with advil most of the time. Megan & Emily did a stellar job putting it together the event, and everything went smoothly. Hooray first blues event of the year!