Thursday, 14 March 2013

I Can't Dance.

There's a time in a kid's life when dance is natural. Whatever happened to mine passed suddenly, and I thus have all the dancing ability of a block of stone. Two left feet. Disconcertingly unco-ordinated.

My best friend, when I was a kid, was sent by his parents to dance classes. I ridiculed him, unfairly, because by then, young teenage years, it seemed to me that dancing was a neat way to get a grappling hold on the mysterious, and largely unapproachable opposite sex. In truth, I was a bit jealous.

Whether wibbling about to contemporary pop, or those ballroom dancers I saw on T.V.,  or Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, the whole thing was a mystery, into which other people were initiated, but somehow, I was held in ignorance.

Luckily for me, my lack of prowess in this particular field is not usually a problem. The Red-Dirt Girl is not big on dancing either.
What pisses me off no end is when someone at a party, who has had a bit too much to drink, insists I dance with them, and won't take no for an answer.

There's a mystery, when I dream, sometimes I can dance. I think on the whole, I'd prefer to be able to dance and choose not to, rather than the current state of unable and choose not to.

When she asked me to dance I said, "I have two left feet."
And the she took my hand and whispered a song so sweet
And she said, "Hold me as close as you can 'til my body's on fire."
It's just a vertical expression of horizontal desire.

So we moved like water being poured over polished steel
And I really can't translate the way she made me feel
And the music played on and the mercury just went higher
It's just a vertical expression of horizontal desire.

We did the samba, the mambo
The tango, the two-step while we romanced
And when the music got fast
We just held to each other and slow danced.

I took nothing for granted but I wished I could stay all night
And as we walked into her place she reached out to dim the light
She said, "Dance with me darling 'til the moon and the stars retire."
It's just a vertical expression of horizontal desire.

It's just a vertical expression of horizontal desire...

Lyrics:  David Bellamy

The expression "Dancing is a vertical expression of a horizontal desire" has been attributed to Robert Frost, Oscar Wilde, ...... And George Bernard Shaw.
There seems to be no evidence whatsoever to back up the claim for either Frost or Wilde, and the only printed evidence for Shaw was in an article written twelve years after his death, but it was actually thus:
Google Books The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
By Elizabeth M. Knowles
New York, NY: Oxford University Press
Pg. 709 (George Bernard Shaw):
[Dancing is] a perpendicular expression of a horizontal desire.
in New Statesman 23 March 1962


  1. I love that first video. Makes me want to sign up at the local Arthur Murphy studio ....

    That last video, well..... sounds like you're gearing up for some Tex-Mex. I'll have you dancing the Texas Two-Step before you know it. Just think - we'll be the couple with four left feet!


  2. Man, thats Freddie Fender back there!
    Leave it to Souby to post such a great country western song, and I dont even like C&W.
    I like to dance . I dance all the time. I'm not really good, but I'm something to watch they tell me.
    A girl asked me a long time ago if I thought people made love the way they danced. She was asking for a demonstration, and I sure gave it to her!

    1. That is a curiously incomplete answer.

      I am now intrigued. As for whether dancing is a good guide to a person's love-making skills, I'm not sure I'd know, because I seem to have skipped the entrée.


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