Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Getting the Eight Count Basic to Fuck with your Head

Your head, or someone else's head if you want to unleash it on them...

There's a flurry of discussion about the eight count basic on Tango-L. Yes, it's one of my frustrations too, leaders who dance the 8CB over and over on the dance floor, back step and all.

I love the free association of life and such. I'm intrigued by the free association going on in my own brain on a daily basis. I had a cyber- free association event a little while ago that plopped me right on Isloa de Pantelleria - a place on the planet that a woman connected me to many years ago. Well, not plopped physically. Virtually. Visually. Such that I laid my eyes on it from a distance. Anyway, I digress. Strange stuff sometimes, that free association.

Here's what popped into my head whilst reading a post just now on Tango-L. It's something I got from a teacher during a private lesson. This was to be an "exercise" in creativity, never to actually be danced.

1] Dance the eight count basic backwards. (start with the 8, 7, 6, 5, etc.)

2] Now mirror it on the other side.

3] Now dance it mirrored and backwards.

4] Now lead the follower in the leader's role, while you dance the follower's role, but you are still leading her, mirrored and backwards.

As I recall, the inside of my skull, or 'skelekin-head' as one of my young nephews used to call it, felt like there were fire ants crawling around and stinging the inside of my skull, or the outside surface of my brain. Or something. Maybe my synapses were shorting out in tiny little microscopic electro-chemical microbursts.

Millions of little femto-brain farts. Femto- is 10 raised to the power of minus 15. "Tee-tiny". Effing small. I think. If my compromised memory serves me. I love to think small. Subatomic. Beyond the subatomic. I love to think big. Ten thousand or five million years. Thirteen point five megaparsecs. Small, and big. Big, and small. "HONEY! Where's the camera!? There's dung beetles in the road!" I'm digressing again.

Anyway. Don't ya'll worry, I'm okay.

Really. [about the 8CB creative exercise and what it felt like]

Try it.

P.S. My feeling re: the 8CB is that there are many more leaders than we are willing to admit who are 'learning' to dance tango via YouTube. Whatever. The nature of the beast?

I'm in a mood.


Mari said...

okay so, no one was around to watch and I gave it a try.

Following from 1->8, fine.
Leading 1->8 fine.
Following from 8 ->1 - less fine, but still doable.
Leading 8->1 where f* did the side step go?
Mirrored Leading 1->8 - cake.
Mirrored leading 8->1 - where did the side step go again? Why do I only have 6 steps?


Leading from the follower's role? WTF? Now I'm totally lost. I don't even know where my feet are now - let alone where my partner's would be.

ow. Brain hurts.

Lord-love-a-duck, I give up. I'm going back to molinetes with the bar-stool.

Still, I do love your posts when you're in a mood. I'm in a mood too, but mine's less entertaining.

Anonymous said...

Been a while since you've been in a Tango mood, Alex!

Elizabeth said...

Is is best to smoke something before attempting this?