On Country Dancing
Dena and I have a fail-proof litmus test for potential romantic interests: take them to a snow cone stand and see what they order. We hypothesize that their snow cone choice says a lot about them. My order? Peach and champagne, but they’re usually out of champagne, in which case I order wedding cake. Dena usually gets wedding cake. Good choices, no? The boy who ordered dill pickle and red hot? Not so much.
Perhaps an even better test of character is country dancing. You can learn much about a person in the first few steps they take. You will develop even deeper knowledge in the 3 minutes of the song. It’s super effective speed dating.
Dancing is more than just moving to music, it’s unspoken communication between two people to work toward a goal. Does the person have a solid, supportive frame, or do they hold you limply and timidly? A weak frame means there will be zero communication between the two people. A strong frame allows the lead to guide the follow with tiny readjustments of the body. If the lead has a strong frame, all he has to do is step sideways and my body will turn. A lead with a weak frame leaves me confused. If the lead is confident, the dance will be fun and engaging. But if he is timid or stumbles? The dance looks awkward and I’ll probably be rolling my eyes at Dena whenever I see her.
The follow has an equally important role in communication. A follow has to be super sensitive to the lead’s movement and yet stay relaxed and fluid. If the follow overthinks a series of turns, the move will fail. If the follow “listens” to the lead, the series of turns will be flawless. If the follow turns or steps before the lead sends the signal, the two will falter.
This is why I love to dance. It is one of the finest and most sophisticated forms of nonverbal communication. And maybe the best way to determine if your potential love interest is going to be a good choice.