Sunday, May 19, 2002

Salsa: Not just for cornchips

Last night Cardinal Cin got a group together for Viva Latino - a night at the Hellenic Club featuring two 10-piece latin bands and one solo singer with dancers who couldn't keep time to save their lives.

On arrival we discovered that ineptitude could reach significant depths very quickly. Doors had only opened at 8, but when we arrived at 8.30 the room was packed and our two booked tables were nowhere to be found. Turned out that the promoters had not only sold more tickets than the room could hold (thus creating a nice little fire hazard issue) but they'd also booked several tables to up to four different groups. Cin spent the first 45 minutes alternatly chasing the unhelpful door-bitch outisde and the unhelpful promoter inside to sort out where tables 9 and 15 were. We never did find our tables, but instead stood around in some spare space until the helpful Hellenic Club staff came around with enough seats for all the people standing (there were lots).

I was not impressed, but my mood changed quickly when the first band hit the stage; the dancefloor filled in under 30 seconds (I was expecting the crowd to sit back for a few songs before getting up) and the music was good. I sat out the first couple of songs, sipping on my drinks, before Cin managed to drag me up onto the floor. It was there I discovered the trick to faux-latin-dancing; independent hip control. Basically, if you can't follow any of the moves, disengage control of your legs from the rest of your body & as long as your feet / legs are moving in time with the beat then hardly anyone'll notice the difference.

An hour later I realised that a thermal layer under my shirt was a bad idea, so ducked into the bathroom to remove it. Heat-hinderance gone, I was back & sweating my butt off with everyone else (well, almost everyone - Cin's german bf & his friends weren't really taken by the firey latin tunes).

It was really interesting to see the really apparent differences in the room; there was the latino community and then there were the very caucasian couples who were regular class-goers. The former were on the floor just moving with the music, doing whatever felt good, the latter were stiff, posed, repeating the steps learnt & practiced & not deviating one little bit.

Fast-forward to about 12.30 - everyone except Paul & Sara were worn out from so much dancing, so we decided to call it a night. As soon as we stepped outside the removed thermal top became very attractive, but the short run back to the car through the rain that stung like little ice daggers in the face didn't quite justify me running to another bathroom to put it back on.

All in all a great night, but I'm not sure if it was enough to get me to Club Habana for their regular Sunday night Latin nights.

Posted by Dean @ 5/19/2002 05:51:00 pm

...Survey says...


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