Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Dumba Zumba

Okay, let me start by saying I won't go back to that class. You'll understand completely by the end of this entry.

I went with this little college girl who has kind of adopted me. She's a psychology major, about to graduate in December. Shes as cute as she is smart, very mature and a lot of fun.

We arrived a little early. We pulled up in the parking lot and noticed that we were the only females there. And what's more, we were the only white people there. We were surrounded by the most gorgeous group of young black men I have ever seen. All of them had dred locks. All of them were lean and muscular. I thought to myself, oh god, please don't let this be the zumba class. I mean. I am not prejudiced. My best friend is black. But I know, as much as I think I can dance well, I KNOW they will all out dance me.

Fortunately I did not need to find out if this was true.Turned out they were part of a basketball team meeting in the gym there.

So, we go into the area where the classes are to be held. I notice there is a healthy mix of all kinds of ages, from teens to elderly. I watch as one woman, I'd say about 75 years old and about 250 lbs, is energetically greeted by a group of women who must be regulars here. I think to myself, this should be a breeze.

Alison leans toward me. "Look at the instructor." She nods toward a stage at one end
of the room. This is not our instructor but it will give you a pretty good idea of what we were dealing with:

"Wouldn't you think the teacher would be in better shape?" Alison asks.

I'm sitting there smug as a bug in a rug. "Oh ho!" Thinks I. "I am going to shine tonight!"

The instructor calls us all to our feet and starts the music.

"What you are going to do, "she says, "is follow the leader! Me!"

Suddenly her hips move, her arms move, her feet move and this lady is rocking all over that stage. She yells out "cha cha!" and we all try to keep up with her magical feet which are moving like flying bullets all over that stage.
"Rumba!" she yells. Suddenly, we have a whole new set of steps and I do not know what the hell I'm doing. But I am trying to follow the leader.

"Ok class! slither down, make a fist. pull air to your hips!" Go up, go down, turn around and now!! We will cha cha line dance. Left foot, tap tap, right foot tap tap, pull air to your hips, jump left. Cha cha up down left right forward backward jump! Now, rumba!!"

"Shit." I think as I swing sweat off my bangs.

"Move that butt round and round!" The dancing marvel orders. I am trying. I am! My butt's going in circles, my hips are going in and out. Im pulling air to my hipbone. and cha cha cha jump!" In short, I am about to have seizure.

I glance over at Alison who is doing a pretty good job but is sweating profusely. Then I see her, right past Alison is this young woman who is as cool as a cucumber. Her hips are moving in time with the music, her hands are gently fanning her face as the Latino singer croons "OH baby, youre so hot so hot so hot.!" And Im watching her and thinking, "I can do that." Only problem is, I can't! I mean, in time I might, but not yet!

Just then the music changes. Our fat fearless dancing leader is leaning far over backewards, head thrown back. Her arms are up in the air, fingers splayed. Her shoulders are vibrating like an off balance washing machine on the spin cycle. The music is now drums and exotic bird calls.

"Eeee hay!!" She screams from the stage, her shoulders shaking all over the place. "Oy! Oy!" She screams. she looks like a woman possessed.

"Oy oy!""screams the 75 year old 250 pound lady, who looks like a zealot at a revival meeting, shaking all over the place, eyes rolling, tongue lolling.

"Where am I?" I wonder. "Am I hallucinating? Did someone slip something in a drink of mine and I am on this weird trip??"

I realize I need to get out of there so I stumble off balance to a chair that's conveniently next to a wall on my left. Alison follows, shaking torrents of sweat off her hair, like Rocky Balboa after the big fight.

"Wanna leave?" I ask her.

"Yeah I do." she squeaks out between gulps of air.

On our way home I ask her, "Do you want to join up?"

"No." she says. " it's not what I thought it would be. She's a sucky teacher. I think I'll join your gym instead."

"Yeah, good idea. Let's stick with the samba class. January's not that far aay."

"Yeah." she says.

Neither of us say anything for a little while and we finally catch our breathe.

"let's go eat." says Alison.

"Okay." says I.


  1. I dont blame you there for wanting to quit. I will stick with my raquetball with my girls and hubby.. Yikes..

  2. If she had shown us the steps she was going to use before the class, it would have been a whole lot better. She seemed more intent on showing off what she could do.

    Alison and I are still trying to figure out how she could cut up that floor the way she did, and do it as regularly as she must do, teaching several classes a week, and still be hefty! It just doesn't make sense.

  3. True. some people are just made big but can move like that from what i understand..

  4. Nonono.. I mean it. She had rolls and rolls of fat.

  5. Told you it was all Greek to me...at least she didn't smash playes on her head...;-)

  6. I half expected a bad Bob Marley impersonator to reggae out of the wings.


Go ahead, you can do it! Just whistle if you want me. You know how to whistle, don't you? You just put your lips together and BLOW....

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