Dance Dance Anti-Revolution

Do you ever watch “Regis and Kelly”?  When I return from taking my 7-year old to school, I crawl right back into bed, ignoring the shame of my slothfulness, and watch the first fifteen minutes of the show.  I like to hear them talk about their lives.

Right before their trivia contest, sometimes they have an audience member dance.

That, my friends, is my Worst Nightmare.

I don’t dance.

I have a long history of not dancing.  I remember being a very small child, hanging out in the lower level of a neighborhood friend’s split level (I think her name was Cindy).  The televisi0n was tuned to The Jackson Five (a cartoon?  I can’t remember) and Cindy directed me and the others to stand on the couch’s armrests and dance.


I don’t dance.  I didn’t then and I don’t now.

The only dancing I’ve ever successfully managed was square-dancing during that mortifying unit in Junior High gym class.  The last thing in the world I wanted to do as a tall teenager was clasp the sweaty hands of boys.  But I did and I skipped around and doe-see-doed (phonetic spelling, you’re welcome) and generally moved as stiffly as possible while dancing.  My grade depended on following the directions, so I did.  But I did not enjoy it.

Fortunately, I grew up in a religious tradition that forbade dancing.  Some of the girls even skipped that square dancing unit in gym class, claiming a religious exemption.  I think dancing was forbidden because it might tempt us to throw off our clothes and have illicit relations with the opposite sex, thus resulting in an unplanned pregnancy, but I don’t know.

All I know is that I don’t dance.

I can clap my hands.

I can play a passable sonata on the piano, counting carefully (“one and two and three and four and”).

But I don’t dance and I never will.  I can sway.  I can tap.  I can nod my head.

But do not ask me to shake my booty or moon-walk or accept an invitation to appear on “Dancing with the Stars.”

Other things I do not do:
Raise my hand in group settings.
Sit in the front row.
The splits.

7 thoughts on “Dance Dance Anti-Revolution

  1. Thank you for this explanation. I like to think I got my good traits from my kids….except that……..YOU say you can clap; I’m not even good at that. Didn’t make it as a pianist, because I couldn’t do the counting – my timing has always been a bit off. I live in my own world, when it comes to timing. But maybe that also explains why I have a difficult time with math – it’s the counting that gets me.


  2. I love to dance. I do, I do, I do! My kids love it when I jump up to Joy & Pain and start dancing around the room. Oh and New Edition – love New Edition! My kids think I am way too cool. They are homeschooled you know. They don’t know any better;-)

    It is ok that you don’t dance though. I hate it when people put the spotlight on me and as much as I love to dance I would not dance in front of others if it made me uncomfortable. Besides Mel, I think you are probably way more fun than you give yourself credit for. You needs dancing when you can talk about books!

    Ouida Gabriel


  3. I’m with you on the dancing. I was so shy that I would never think of shaking my stuff in front of anyone! & we were taught that dancing was wrong too so that was always in the back of my mind. The square dancing never bothered me though & it was probably one of the only gym class assignments that I actually did. I remember just being excited to be Mike Walker’s partner for square dancing 😉


  4. When I was in high school and the time came for dancing as part of our PE class, my dad went to the school and talked to the teacher to get me excused, since dancing of any type was a big no-no. So then I had to spend the next 6 weeks of PE period in the library. That was embarrassing! (No wonder I wasn’t very popular!)


  5. I have watched Regis & Kelly’s (Kathie Lee) host chat every morning for 19 years!
    I also don’t dance. I recently went to my 14 year old daughter’s cheerleading tryouts where she had to do a dance. My mouth hung open as I watched her dance incredibly well! I had never seen her dance before. Afterwards, I asked her where she learned to dance. She said that it is just a science of movements put together. Maybe that’s my problem – I have never liked science!


  6. My guess is that you don’t dance because of your religious upbringing. It does something to you. Eventually, I learned to linedance fairly well, but I’m still inhibited over the other kind.


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