4 September 2014

Champagne tango!

“How long have you been dancing?”
“Um… a few years.”

***

At one point, somebody told me that one shouldn’t ask people how long they’ve been dancing tango. I thought this made sense: number of years wasn’t a very good way of measuring and comparing one’s talents, since we don’t all have the same options when it comes to classes and practice opportunities. In the beginning, being asked was fun, though. I’d answer “six months” and people would be like “wow, then you’re really talented”. But then I realised that years were passing and even my base technique STILL wasn’t good enough and I was in fact probably a FANTASTICALLY SLOW learner. And so I became reluctant to answer this simple question - even if the asker was a beginner who would most likely be wildly impressed anyway.


Jekteviken in 2014.


Today is September 4th, and it’s my tango birthday. In fact, it’s a proper anniversary: ten years ago, I made my way to Jekteviken in Bergen to attend my first tango course. As I wrote in the first post on this blog, tango turned out to become the first and only enterprise that I've insisted on sticking to even if it's making me feel more useless than successful.

And I think this is how one should reply to this question: not how many years one has been dancing tango, but how many years one has stuck to dancing tango; how many years one has refused to give up something that turned out to be really, really difficult in many different respects. For me, this question is about our will to take on challenges, and this will is something I think we all should allow ourselves to be proud of. 

Let's drink to tango stubbornness!

Champagne tango: Carlo Di Sarli instrumental 1958 - listen to it here on YouTube.