November 30, 2003
Ohio: Part II (Saturday)
Going to bed that night, I set the alarm wrong, so instead of waking up at 7:00, we were awoken by Chris knocking on the door at 8:10. We had to be ready to go by 8:30. After a very brief shower and cramming a muffin in my pocket, we were good to go.
The only events I was dancing in during the Saturday morning session were the Open West Coast and the Open Lindy (and, as it turned out, the Open Hustle). They were at the very end of the morning session, so I had little to do but sit around and watch the American Rhythm events, which, as far as I can tell, involved seventy billion rounds each. Everyone was dancing American Rhythm. And we noticed for the first time that people were dancing down quite a bit. There were couples who really should have been dancing at the Silver or Gold level who were in the Bronze competition. We didn’t have anyone dancing them (unless we did, and I forgot them, and I’m sorry.), so we just wasted time. And watched the dancing.
I saw Bolero, which is a bizarre dance. It’s sort of a cross between Waltz and Rumba, and it looks like either Rumba with rise and fall, or Waltz on tethers. Everyone was joking about it being Kay’s dance, which I later found out was because in a past year, a guy had come up to them and asked if anyone would dance Bolero with him. Despite never having danced it before, Kay agreed, and they won! So now Bolero is Kay’s dance.
I am proud of my performance in the Lindy, though. I can honestly say that I am the second best ballroom dancer, who was in Columbus this weekend, and danced Lindy in the open competition, and had his number on for all the rounds. And I mean that. Stephanie and I weren’t planning to dance in it at all until the night before, but luckily it’s easy to add dances on short notice. Actually, as we found out during the Hustle, you can just walk onto the floor for an Open Dance event. Claremont took the 1-2-3 spots in the Lindy (Andrew and Kay 1, Matt and Katie 3), and, had Jon and Ashleigh had their numbers on, it clearly would have been the 1-2-3-4 spots. This says far more about the lack of good Lindy dancers there than it really does about our skill.
Still, though. #2! W00t!
Kitri and I got 5th in the West Coast, and I think we were the only CCBDCers (cooka-budda-kers) in the final. I have to assume we did pretty well, because we certainly didn’t have anything prepared, having danced West Coast for a total of two songs or so. Ever. Certainly, by the last round we were much better than we were in the first round.
I also entered the Hustle with Stephanie, but we didn’t get called back after the first round. I saw the people who did get called back, and Steph and I were way better than a bunch of them. Not that I’m bitter.
After that we went to lunch, and returned to watch the Standard events. I’m sure people did well in these (or not), but I honestly have no recollection. At this point I started getting nervous about our performance, which tended to cause my attention to stray a little bit. I also started getting dressed for our performance, which caused a reduction in the flow of blood through my neck, the resulting loss of oxygen leading to certain gaps in my memory.
When the time came for us to perform, we all had a nice trip outside into the hall, and then back into the ballroom. University of Arizona went first. I don’t remember much about their routine, except that it was a Latin medly, and most of the time they stayed in a single-file line. Then we were up.
We had practiced our entrance the night before in the hotel hallway (somewhat to the distress of the lady across the hall. Not that I care about her, though; she woke me up at midnight by knocking on the wrong door! They have numbers! How dumb do you have to–but I digress). So we had that entrance thing down quite well. I remember only three things in the actual routine (but don’t worry. I watched it on video, and I did all the steps and everything). The first thing I remember was waiting for the music to start at the beginning. It took ages longer than usual, by which I probably mean an extra two or three seconds. And when the music did start, it was low and muffled and terrible. Seems that the moron on the microphone had blown out the speakers when she was shouting during the Polka, so the music sounded like shit for everyone. The second was during the Waltz, when we went to our plus formation. I remember looking over at Jonah and realizing that at worst we were about four inches off of the line. Since that’s about the best we’ve done so far, I was very happy at that point. The last thing I remember during our performance was just as I was going up to take my bow, and I thought “It’s almost over. That wasn’t so hard.”
Then Wes’s new team, UC Irvine, performed. They did a cool Latin routine. After that, the University of Michigan’s team performed a standard medly. They were beautiful dancers, but there were only four of them, so they couldn’t do much in the way of a routine. They ended up getting fourth, which was really too bad, considering how talented their dancers were.
So, hours later, we left the Ballroom to go home, clean up, and hit some dinner.