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The Ongoing Adventures of Tango Man

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Installment Five of the Ongoing Adventures of Tango Man
(Da Da Da DAAAAA – He’s everywhere, he’s everywhere)
by Ace Dance Crime reporter Rudy Dancealot!

It was a surprisingly pleasant evening in Tampa. Fall had arrived, the rains had stopped, and
the temperatures had decreased a small measure. It was surprisingly pleasant if you ignored
the fact that it was the end of October, and the ghosts, ghouls, and goblins were all getting
quite brazen and were wandering the streets en masse, molesting any innocent humans who
would allow themselves to make an appearance outside after dark. As a result, it was quite
commendable that the Rhapsody Faithfull were braving the elemental forces of Halloween
and making their way to the SouthernStar Monthly dance despite the blood sucking
dangers facing them. The Rhapsody Ballroom is considered neutral territory, so no zombies
would enter, but it really puts a damper on the festivities if someone is bitten by a zombie
and then turns into one only after entering the ballroom. Zombies are notoriously bad at
the Cha Cha – they just can’t figure out the syncopation on the ‘chachacha’. Plus, invariably,
zombies do not renew their USA Dance membership the next year. They have good intentions,
but their fingers keep falling off when they try to hold a pen to write the check for the
membership dues. We have lost more SouthernStar members in that way.

For those who managed to make it through the doors unscathed, the evening was proceeding
pretty much as normal, but for one big exception – Peggy was back on the floor. Granted,
she had Acupuncture needles sticking out of her back, she had a brace on her knee, a
wrap around her wrist, a support running up her spine to prevent her from bending, and
she had her massage therapist waiting in the wings just in case, but other than that she was
pretty much back to normal – flashing her big green dress about as she and Mike performed
their signature Tango; it brought tears to the eyes of many of those in the crowd watching that night.

In the other corner was Tracey Zirfas dancing with total abandon and joy as she always does.
Suddenly from nowhere could be heard a ripping guitar riff and the voice of Hank Williams Jr.
screaming over the loud speakers, “Are you ready for some football!”  Tracey stopped
dancing, her eyes glazed over, she paused for just a second as if lost in thought, and
then jumped up in the air, ripped her clothes off to reveal a Washington Redskins
Cheerleaders outfit (it is not hard to hide those cheerleading outfits under your regular
clothes, if you know what I mean). Out of nowhere she came up with two red
and gold pompoms, and she began to appropriately gyrate and shout “Give me an ‘R’, give
me an ‘E’, give me a ‘D’, Oh, you know the rest – Go Redskins – Rah Rah Rah JumbleBamDinkle,
Hippity Hop to the Soda Shop and Who Dat in the Brier Patch with our Quarterback Man – Lets
go all the way to the Walmart Store and score one for the Yippy Skippy”. (I am pretty sure that
was the cheer word for word.) You can take the girl out of the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders,
but you can’t take the Washington Redskins Cheerleader out of the girl (she
really was a Redskins
cheerleader at one time). Oh dear, what would her sweet, young students back at the
elementary school in Ruskin think of their dear Ms. Zirfas if they could see her now?

One more note of importance, the strange little man was once again sitting in the corner
watching the proceedings. He seemed to be getting smaller and more wizened every month,
but his presence had started bringing a sense of comfort and safety to the other dancers in
the ballroom. They had come to rely on the little man just watching…watching…watching.

Suddenly the lights dimmed and guess who walked in – yup, you guessed it “TA DA” The Man
In Black (MIB).  His appearance was a bit unusual this evening since he had just come from a
Halloween party where he had dressed up as The Dread Pirate Benny, but the sexual allure,
and pure animal magnetism of the

man could not be obscured by a couple of layers of makeup and ostrich feathers sticking out
of his hat. Michael and Beth were manning the door that evening. Beth was a bit miffed with
The MIB because he had treated her with less than respect the last time they had met
(you may remember the infamous incident with the I-Phone and cake). She decided that
her strategy was just to ignore The MIB.  Michael, on the other hand, was putting his foot
down (using his good knee). He was not going to let The MIB get away with joining the
dance once again without paying the appropriate fee. Michael got up and approached
The MIB with a determined look. The MIB did not hesitate for a minute but said, “Michael,
it is so good to see you, you should see the new motorcycle I bought. It is a “XT346 – M897
twin ported fugel meister double ripped time span transverse mounted google-lapsed BMW
with combination beer can opener and double shot Raid 3D pest exterminator.” Much
like Tracey earlier in the evening, Michael’s eyes begin to glaze over. He had wanted
one of those ever since they first appeared on the street a couple of months ago. The MIB
said, “Come on Mike, let’s go take a look at it.”  The MIB opened the door, and Michael,
in a total ‘hot motorcycle’ induced trance, hurried out the door to gaze at the wonder. We
will never know if the motorcycle really existed. Before we could take a peek outside,
The MIB closed and locked the door behind Michael. I suspect that there was no motorcycle,
and that Michael is still wandering the parking lot looking for the motorcycle of his dreams,
while  SouthernStar coffers once again lost eight dollars. That MIB is indeed an evil Dread Pirate Benny.

The MIB turned and entered the ballroom. He approached Kathryn Schaffer and asked her
for the pleasure of the lovely waltz that was playing. Kathryn, never wanting to offend,
graciously accepted the offer. The MIB escorted Kathryn to the floor. They took perfect
dance position, both dancers in perfect posture. The MIB gave Kathryn his left side with a
Tick – Tick – Tick; Kathryn approved. The phrase came around and The MIB executed
a perfect Natural turn. He rotated through his base, leading with a slight over turn in
the torso as you always do for a right turn. He swung into the second step to allow Kathryn
to stay well to the outside. The MIB then produced the exact, perfect amount of sway to stop
his movement and pulled his right foot in perfectly to meet his left foot, all to the complete
approval of Kathryn (it is not easy to dance to her standards). But wait, what dastardly,
craven, evil is this?  JUST AS THE MIB BROUGHT HIS FEET TOGETHER IN A PERFECT
NATURAL TURN, HE PURPOSELY TOOK A STEP BACK, PULLING KATHRYN COMPLETELY
OFF HER FEET!  The little man in the corner had witnessed this atrocity, and started to get
up for a quick costume change in the back, but just as quickly sat back down, seeing
that the situation was well in hand. Kathryn, after being pulled off her feet, quickly
managed to regain her balance. She stepped back and gave The MIB a disappointed
look, and always the teacher, Kathryn proceeded to explain in detail what The MIB did
wrong, and what he could do to correct this improper technique. Having completed her
instrutions, Kathryn stepped back and commanded The MIB, “Show me!”  For the third
time that evening, a set of eyes began to glaze over as The MIB attempted to take in all
the information Kathryn had just given him. The MIB was a good dancer, very good,
and all his mistakes were always the result of pure evil intentions, but The MIB for the
first time in his life had doubts whether he could accomplish the exacting requirements
of Kathryn’s instruction. He began to slowly diminish in size and bravado as he thought
about doing the natural turn again under Kathryn’s watchful eye, until he finally disappeared
into a tiny whisp of smoke (for once I sympathize with The MIB, I have experienced the
overload all too many times). Kathryn turned with frustration and commented, “If the man
cannot take some honest criticism and accept a little help, then so much for him.”

Even though the little man sitting in the corner did not have to enlist the aid of Tango Man
this week, he felt satisfied that the immediate crises had been resolved, but he suspected that
The Man in Black would show up again with even worse dance crimes on his mind. But
never fear - the ever vigilant Tango Man (and Kathryn) will be ready.

Please stay tuned for further adventures of Tango Man (Da Da Da DAAAAA – He’s everywhere,
he’s everywhere).