The Ant - by Older Son
The Reptile Weekend

Bits and Pieces and a Feminist Rant

[Note:  This particular Feminist Rant isn't mine, but it's funny.  Well, if you're not a guy.]

I wasn't going to write at all today because I'm exhausted.  Yesterday, I taught aerobics in the morning.  I've pretty much decided to take next year off from teaching since I've been having troubles with my voice - so I've not bothered to spend the time to come up with a new routine.  I'm not teaching all that often so it didn't seem worth the time.  But, all of a sudden on the way there yesterday morning, I decided that I was tired of teaching the old one.  So, in the three minutes I had before class, I thought back over favorite sets of moves from old routines and wrote them down on a piece of scrap paper which I then used as my guide for class.  Plus, I pulled out a tape that I hadn't used for years. 

New routine (sort of) and music that would be a surprise.  Well, it was a good thing that only one person was there at the beginning of class.  That's fine - the one person likes my class, and I'd rather teach an enthusiastic small group than a bored large one.  But, it did put me in a mood - which remained even after the other eleven people showed up during the first ten minutes of class. An I'm-not-feeling-nurturing-so-you-had-better-keep-up sort of mood.  No checking to see if every single person felt comfortable with the new moves.  If no one was obviously falling over their feet after we'd been through a set of moves four times, I moved on.  No frenetically perky smiles (those aren't easy for me anyway!).

I was amazed when about half the people in the class came up afterwards and said how much they liked it!  I wasn't being nurturing, and I was using a routine I came up with in a few minutes before class (actually, the routine went together pretty well.  I only had to tweak a few things to make it go smoothly.  Part of having taught aerobics for almost 13 years is being able to teach on the fly). 

Then, yesterday evening, I went to a Broadway Dance class at Ninth Street Dance in Durham with my daughter.  She was going to miss ballet over the summer, but her dance studio doesn't do summer classes.  The only ones I found in Chapel Hill that did seemed too professionally oriented.  For some reason, I remembered 9th St. Dance and checked out their website.  It turns out that they focus on adult classes (which teens can join), though they have kids classes also during the school year.  I loved taking dance in college, but thought that dance studios all only had classes for kids. 

The ballet class for her level didn't fit in with our summer schedule, but the Broadway dance did.  And, if you've been reading this blog for awhile, you'll know how much we like musicals!  Dear husband drove daughter to the dance class last week.  She was nervous, but she loved it.  It probably didn't hurt that one of the songs they danced to was a Fosse one - All that Jazz.  Before they got back to the car, both of them agreed that I would love that class.

Now, even though husband and daughter said that there were people my age or in their 30's in the class, and even though they said that they didn't all have "dancers' bodies," I was still nervous.  But, it sounded like fun, and I think it's good to challenge yourself with new things (which, it turns out, was how dear daughter helped deal with her nervousness the previous week).  And she really wanted me to try it.  So I went.  However, they didn't do well at estimating ages.  I was a good ten years older then the next oldest one in the class, and most of them were in their 20's.  I was glad I had taught that morning - nothing like taking a bigger risk in the morning to make this one seem smaller. 

Overall, I think I did pretty well.  A lot of the moves were familiar from aerobics or jazzercize or college dance classes.  I had the hardest time when the teacher, after showing us the moves a few times, would sit and watch while we did them.  From 16 years of aerobics, I'm used to either following someone that I can watch the whole time or teaching myself.  I'm not used to remembering routines that quickly (unless I make them up).  And there were a few really quick moves that I'm going to practice this week.  Overall, it was a lot of fun!  Even when I was messing up.  It was actually wonderful to be challenged that much and not know what I was doing the entire time!

The teacher for the class, who played Mr. Mistoffelees in a touring production of Cats, had more energy than any aerobics instructor I've ever met. 

But I'm so tired today, even after seven hours of sleep. 

And, I wasn't going to write, but then I ran across an interesting link from Inside Higher Ed:  Views which I usually take a look at every day.  And I decided to post a link also - but then I needed to introduce it.  And then mention that I'm too tired to write anything else.  And then mention why I'm so tired....(If you give a mouse a cookie, he's going to want some milk to go with it...).

Anyway, here's the link that inspired the whole thing - from Toddled Dredge.  It's an interesting rant about academic conferences - A Little Sullen Sexism from Veronica (but guys might not want to read it.  You were warned). 

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