Day 21 It has been 21 days since I have touched someone. For most people, touch has taken on a whole new meaning. Seven days ago, an Amazon box arrived at my doorstep, and this pretty much sums up the incident: Picking up the Amazon box, putting down the Amazon box, walking into the house … Continue reading The Touch Chronicles
Last night my best friend and I FaceTimed, tried to do a women's tango technique class in our living room, which basically sounded like this for an hour: Me: Can you see my feet? Her: How about now?Me: No, turn the other way.Her: How about now? We made the class work, joking often about climbing … Continue reading Day 12 Without Touch
My Tango Life Cancelled: March 11, 2020 One by one, milongas, practicas, festivals, tango classes, and seminars cancelled worldwide. My facebook notifications screen looked similar to an airline terminal monitor during a snow storm, one cancellation after the next. Sadly, I had to do the same and postpone indefinitely our weekly milonga, which had debuted … Continue reading My Tango Life Cancelled
In tango in the States, men have apologized to me during practicas or milongas; however, their threshold for what constitutes an offense is much higher. For instance, a leader may have just learned a new complex sequence or technique and wishes to experiment with it and often apologizes when it is not executed fluidly or effortlessly. Women, on the other hand, often apologize for nearly every instance of instability, which could be the result of the leader's actions, which may be due to the congestion on the floor, which may be due to a bunch of out-of-towners overly excited about the first D'Arienzo tanda of the night. What women identify as an offense or fault of theirs may actually have nothing to do with them.
For Discépolo, someone like Jesus or other spiritual moralists are on the same social rung of a much larger ladder that separates the poor from the privileged. Money is God. And to live a purposeful life, we must serve the dollar and offer penance to the debt collector. Nearly 100 years have passed since these prescient words were written. They continue to be relevant in the world that we live in today, where we dance against the clock, eyes shut, not knowing what to do.
January 10, 1939--January 23, 2020 Twenty three years ago, I stood in front of a similar crowd to deliver my mother’s eulogy. Her death was a shock to us all. The six of us were far too young to lose our mother. After 23 years growing and maturing into successful independent adults, we aren’t any … Continue reading Eulogy for My Father
When I lead women or women observe from the margins of the dance floor, nearly every woman will either tell me, "One day I would love to learn to lead" and then proceed with the same litany of reasons as to why that's not possible right now; or say with laughter, "I want to lead but I don't know where to put my boobs," sweeping their arms in large circles around their breasts as if they swayed uncontrollaby with every step. I reply jokingly, "You leave your boobs where you last left them." Why do so many women worry about their breasts when following or leading a woman?
Yesterday in my tango class, my maestra Paola Tacchetti took one hand to her chest and the other to her pelvis and stated that the old milongueros would find heaven in their hearts and hell down below. She stated that the more we can proudly separate these two worlds, the closer we are to discovering … Continue reading Between Heaven and Hell is Tango
In tango, it’s the difference between dancing the tango of Chicho Frumboli or Moira Castellano or dancing the tango burrowed deep in our body where the sorrow of yesteryear surfaces and follows each shallow breath.
In tango, questions from our dancer partners are almost never neutral. “Why did you step there? Why didn’t you bend your knee? Why didn’t you boleo?” Lerman writes, “When defensiveness starts, learning stops” (qtd. in McCarroll 245). When two peers are involved, it is inevitable for egos to clash or for one person to feel demoralized.