Monday, August 28, 2017

Social? Tradicional?

By Warren Zhang, Waipio
What is Traditional Social Dancing on Oahu? Does anyone know? Traditional means handed down. It means that it has evolved naturally from earlier forms, rather than having been created, established or defined artificially or arbitrarily by outside organizations. It means that there is a respect for the roots and for the cultural integrity of the form. It can mean live traditional music. The dancers cherish the music, and the musicians and dancers inspire each other.

"Social Dancers understand perfectly that they are not in the same plain
as the highly trained competition and exhibition dancers."

It means dancing as an integral part of life, rather than an activity that is separate from life, restricted to professionals and performers, and consumed passively by spectators. Social means community. co-operative, rather than competitive. It means respect for those whom we dance with, whether they be partners or others with whom we share the dance floor. It means taking care that everyone has a good time, rather than being selfish and self-centered.

It means being sociable, rather than a show-off. It means dancing with everyone, not just favorite partners, and it can mean changing partners every dance. It means being civil in partnering, waiting until the music starts, before asking someone to dance. It means inclusive, rather than exclusive. The term "dance community" is open, in the sense that it includes all those with an interest in dancing, rather than only those who belong to something, or have taken training. Anybody out there dig this.?

"Social Dancers know that good deeds should be done
for intention and not for attention."

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Poetry in Dance

By Cher Holten, Kailua Kona on the Big Island

Life stretches before me like a giant dance floor. I step out, never knowing what music I will hear. Some days I'm able to flow through life, gently rising and falling in a spectacular waltz. Other days are more like a swing, where I am triple-stepping to stay in tune -- changing direction, whirling this way and that. The joy of Life's Gigantic Ballroom is the partnership of the dance -- For I know I am not alone. In my partner I have a chemistry that transcends the dance.

"Social Dancers know that the world is full of poetry. The air is living with its spirit; and humans dance to the music of its melodies, and sparkle in its brightness."

Together we can move in the same direction, changing rhythms with the music, matching steps and keeping time. And even stepping "outside the lines" to improvise and stretch ourselves when we turn apart to perform a pattern on our own. We are secure in knowing that we will always return to the safe haven of a solid basic dance position. Sure, we may miss some steps here and there -- and occasionally land on each other's toes but if we never made mistakes, we'd never learn to dance.

"Maui Waltz" by Loyal Garner

And through the missteps we learn the art of recovery -- of helping each other gently back into the rhythm of Life -- Never looking down and always with a smile. And even with my partner, at times we are expected to do a dance we've not learned. That's when we discover on Life's dance floor there are teachers who will show us the patterns, demonstrate the flowing movements and provide a strong lead. If only we learn to follow - They gently guide us through the unknown and give us the gift of new skills.

"Tiny Bubbles" by Don Ho

Then we quietly move away so we can joyfully navigate the patterns when we meet this dance again. As I enter Life's Ballroom and greet my partner, may I listen for the music. And whether it is a waltz or a rumba, a cha cha cha or a swing, a tango or a fox trot -- or some other dance I've yet to learn -- May I listen for the rhythm for movement. And may I always be in touch with my Cosmic Teachers who will guide me - May I learn when to lead and when to follow so I will always be flowing in time with the music and dancing through Life with joy.

"Social Dancers know that no one can make the list of
the good deeds you can do today."

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Driver-Less Vehicles

The Driver-Less Buses are working.
If you find yourself in Northern Greece, head to Trikala, a city of 80,000 which has completed the first test of the French CityMobil2 system in actual real-life traffic. The 10-person electric buses traveled along a 1.5-mile route that’s on dedicated lanes in some parts of the city, but otherwise is sharing the street with cars, bikes, and people. It was all part of an EU initiative to reduce emissions and get cars off the road. If they have good seating it will be worth it.

"Social Dancers believe there is a benefit to giving and sharing."

The Chinese bus company Yutong has been testing a self-driving city bus along a 20 mile route from the cities of Zhengzhou to Kaifeng. Amazingly, this bus traveled at speeds up to 40 mph, changed lanes, and stopped at lights without any driver interference, although there was a driver sitting there, just in case. Yutong says passengers will be climbing on board in September with no back up driver.

"Somewhere Over The Rainbow" by Bruddah Iz

They are working on bigger ones for Hawaii
WEpods, a modified version of Easy Mile’s EZ10 bus, has been shuttling six passengers at a time from Wageningen to Ede, in the central part of the Netherlands. The 17-minute drive marked the first time a bus traveled on completely public roads with no purpose-built infrastructure. Unfortunately, they will not be permitted on Oahu. Everyone would know that the Rail Disaster is a big big mistake, billions and billions of dollars in cost overruns.

Time is free, but it's priceless. - You can't own it, but you can use it
You can't keep it, but you can spend it.
And once you've lost it, you can never get it back.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Moving Right Along

Just saw a newsreel of African Dancing on the Internet. The one count, the incessant beat, the easiest all over the world from the beginning and done for ages. Here they are showing the blacks of Africa still dancing up and down, and enjoying moving to the music. Most of us have heard that many in Africa are picking up on the two and three count. Waltz? Nevah happened! But other countries have introduced many different kinds of dances to Africa.

"We are not looking for people who are fanatical about dance,
we just need people who like to dance."

This has been a long unknown and overlooked fact. Specially because of the fairy tales in Latin America. The two count was very popular from Alaska to Punta del Fuego in South America, millenniums before the arrival of the first illegal aliens. And the three count was popular in the bigger groups. The four count only in the largest cities, in the big empires like the Mayans in Mexico or the Incas in Peru. And yes they had the five count measure.

"Vayo Con Dios" by Les Paul and Mary Ford

Latin music and dance has evolved all over the world, much of it pure hype and easy to convince the kids. In many places it has evolved into a few basic movements and the appropriate music. Though still widely diversified specially in Mexico. And they are the key to establishing a separate Latin Division. All over the world the basic dances seem to be Rumba, Cha Cha Cha and Tango. Six or Seven would be nice diversified evening.

"Kiss Of Fire" by Georgia Gibbs

One of the most beautiful dance floors in West Oahu is at the Waianae District Park. But I cannot find that it has ever been used for dancing. Nice? I would like to see people dancing on the Wai'anae Coast. And yes, this would be a perfect place. We will need all the help we can get for the benefit of all and the only rule we have so far is, "Nobody has to do anything." This Agenda has not been engraved on stone.

"Social Dancers know that a little thought and a little kindness are often
worth more than a great deal of money."

Saturday, August 12, 2017


Our entire blog enchilada has been getting little feedback in comments but picking up information contributors. Those willing to share what dance information they may have with their fellow dancers. Marie and Aunty Maile have been super terrific and the most telling evidence has been with Wahiawa Ballroom Dance Club and Dance Appeal Studio. Fortunately we also had some contact with Aiea Ballroom Dance Association. We now have Town Dancer and Platinum Horseshoe running neck to neck for first place. I am making more contact with dancers and I just have to keep trying. I believe "we" the residents can help each other in this entire West.

"Whatever you want, you reach a long way toward it if you will combine your heart, your backbone, your faith and your common sense, and then stretch."

Most of the clubs in town have their own Web sites and have plenty of members. So Town Dancer has readers from the old days mostly. Platinum Horseshoe is showing the progress that can be made under the proper conditions. It should be in first place by the end of the month if we can share some information from what is doing in the West. WBDC. ABDA and Dance Appeal may do it. And of course, comments, comments would do very much.

"The Last Waltz" by Englebert Humperdinck

Running neck to neck for third place is Blogging Hawaii and Dancing in the Dark. Blogging Hawaii should be in third except not much feedback. A good steady information contributor and a few more dance functions to blog would do it. The reader/dancers are interested in whatever you have share in dancing on Oahu. Dancing in the Dark is my personal blog and it just reviews all the rest, running at about 33 average hits per day, which is about 1000 hits per month. Should be a good goal for all blogs.

"Social Dancers believe that especially when the music is good, you gotta dance."

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Dancing on Oahu

The entire enchilada is showing its strengths. The photos contributed by many is what made two blogs in Platinum Horseshoe a celebration. One was from Wahiawa Ballroom Dance Club and their dance on Friday, August 4th. The other was the Dance Appeal Studio and their dance on Saturday, August 5th. I certainly thank all of those that took the trouble to get the photos. A very big, big help for me because of my physically disabilities.

"Ability is what we are capable of doing - Motivaton determines what we do.
Attitude determines how well we do it."

I was able to get three nine picture collages for WBDC and two nine picture collages for Dance Appeal. Then I got some more from Aunty Maile and I made a completely new blog in Blogging Hawaii with two nine picture collages. Give the reader/dancers of Blogging Hawaii a break. Getting better photography every time. Two people better than one. Three, better than two, Four, better than three. But, 15 not better than 14. Up to the photographer and I will do the best I can.

"The Last Waltz" by Englebert Humperdinck

Then it helps to get a few sentences from any of the attendees. Just small opinions is fine, makes it more social. And we all must remember opinions are like noses. Everyone has got one and they are all different. That is what make the opinions so valuable. You people, as human beings are unique, and there are no clones.

"Social Dancers dance today as much as they want,
for tomorrow is not promised to anyone."

Friday, August 4, 2017

So What's Doin'?

Amazing the way these blogs are making progress, slow because I cannot get around much any more. But many dancers know of us in Makaha, Turtle Bay, Makapuu Point and Kalealoa. Oahu is just about right. The developing areas are, the Central Valley, the Waianae Coast and the North Shore. The Rail Disaster has pretty well shot their territory all to hell. The biggest hold up in the newer places is the Present Rail Party veto of any business parks in these areas. And "I coulda been home in 20 minutes." And of course, we will gladly accept any dance news from Neighbor Islands.

"As you travel though life, no matter where you go,
keep your eye on the doughnut and not on the hole."

Playlist from 50 years ago:
La Bamba - Mambo, ** La Cumparsita - Tango, ** Light My Fire - Rumba, **
Mack the Knife - Fox Trot, ** Mambo Italiano - Mambo, **
Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit Of...) - Mambo, ** Moon River - Waltz, **
Moondance - Fox Trot, ** Mustang Sally - Swing, ** Neon Moon - Rumba, **
Never On Sunday - Cha Cha, ** Oh, Pretty Woman - Swing, **
Old Time Rock and Roll - Swing, ** Oye Como Va - Rumba/Cha Cha

Of course this is way out of the ballpark for the younger set and we all should have a little understanding. That was our time, and now it is their time. We can still get all just fine. We will continue to dance wherever and whenever we get the chance.

So I am not famous, and limited physically, we need help. First is the comments at the end of every blog. Opinions are like noses, everybody got one and they are all different. In social media they are very necessary. Then comes the information contributors. The perfect ones are any of the present dance teachers in our blogosphere. They know a hellavah lot that they can share some bits of dance wisdom with our reader/dancers. That will get us more readership and we can start looking for Guest Bloggers and make our best blog an independent.

"Readers read blogs when they provide an informational or entertainment
value so great that it would be a loss not to read them."