Dancing With The Stars…call Me!

Tom Bergeron why haven’t you called? I’ve been anxiously waiting for the phone to ring inviting me to be one of the contestants on your show! While I’m not exactly a celebrity, I’m sure I would score well with your TV audience because they could more readily relate to me; being one of them. I can just see the couple down the street watching; Harriet punching Bill with her elbow and saying, “Look how graceful and poised he is! He’s one of us! You could be doing that if you weren’t so lazy!”

I’m sure you can see where having a man of the street on your show could spur the ballroom dancing craze that is sweeping the nation to even a higher level. In the finals I would sweep across the floor with my pro partner, Cheryl Burke, eliciting cries of “Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!” from the three judges. Breathing hard from the exertion of a perfect dance, I would look humbly at the camera and say, “I just wanted to lose a few pounds. That’s why I joined. I had no idea we would win the whole thing!” That’s showing a lot of humility and will increase your ratings exponentially.

Back in my college days, I enrolled in a ballroom dancing class. Most of the class at that time was mostly comprised of girls. Guys back then were all eaten up with testosterone and feared being called sissies or worse. Youth however knows no fear so I joined the class. My sense of pride vanished when I discovered that the class had twice as many girls than guys! I’m no fool.

The class was fun and I learned a little about dancing the foxtrot, the rumba and the waltz. I found however, that this knowledge didn’t apply much to dancing at the local bar on Saturday night. There wasn’t a lot of call for the rumba at the Stardust Club, so over the years I sort of lost touch with ball room dancing until I watched Dancing with the Stars. The way they dance on TV and the way I learned were definitely two different sets of dances altogether. I had never seen anything like what they were doing on DWS and the girls in my old dancing class never wore costumes like the contestants on TV!

Dance studios are popping up all over world, due to the success of Dancing With The Stars! Millions of average, down to earth folks whose previous idea of exercise was to push the button on the TV remote, are now hustling down to the nearest dance studio; signing up for dancing lessons. While I first learned to dance because there were girls in the class, there are other benefits to dancing.

Generally you will discover a greater appreciation on music and its rhythms. Your posture will be much better because you can’t slouch in ballroom dancing. The physical benefits are numerous; more stamina, your circulatory system will become more developed and your legs will be strengthened. All this exercise will not only help you lose weight, but will aid in the care of high blood pressure and diabetes. I wasn’t thinking of all this years ago in dance class but it must have worked because I’m still kicking up my heels.

Ballroom dancing has come a long way in this country in the last 40 years. There’s even a concerted effort to make ballroom dancing an Olympic event. The name has even been changed for World and Olympic competition to “Dancesport” but it’s still ballroom dancing to me.

Ballroom dancing has been competitive on the collegiate level for years, but I was surprised that MIT, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, annually holds one of the largest ballroom dancing competitions in the country, with nationally and internationally know dancers competing. Who would have thought such a staid and venerable institution would know anything about dancing. Universities all over the country have competing ballroom dance teams that are phenomenal. There are so many ballroom dance competitions that I wouldn’t be surprised if there aren’t degrees in ballroom dancing soon!

I’ll be waiting by the phone for next year’s call. Please don’t wait too long for age is creeping upon me and my joints are aching. Guess I’ll have to enroll in a dance class again. Besides I need to lose a few pounds.

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