Something to Read When You're Bored


Finally, a video of my dance troupe!
October 2, 2008, 2:00 pm
Filed under: Dancing, Entertainment, Life

Just about a week ago my swing dancing troupe did a performance for a mountaineers club dance. We did the routine ‘Everybody Eats’, and I was a last minute addition (there turned out to be an extra lead), so I got to perform the routine after not practicing it at all for about 3 months. Here’s the video:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Finally, a video of my dance troupe!“, posted with vodpod



Street Performance Dance Spectacular!
March 4, 2008, 9:00 am
Filed under: Dancing, Entertainment | Tags: , ,

On the first of May at 6pm my dance troupe is going to be performing in a big crazy street show in downtown Seattle! There will be lots of other dance groups performing too, and – most importantly – FREE CAKE! So regardless of whether you’re interested in seeing me dance, it’s probably worth checking out the whole spectacle just for the cake.

Here’s the official plug:

This May, get swept off your feet with Ooo La La, a free interactive public performance spectacular! Perfumed by the decorative exoticism of art deco coupled with the surrealist tendencies of the Jazz Age, this May Day confection celebrates sweets, romantic love, and the act of wishing.

And here’s a pretty elaborate description of what will be going on:

A series of simultaneous events begins the extravaganza. On the Harbor Steps sidewalk, an ensemble of bubblegum-snapping Brooklyn bellboys interact with passersby, inviting them to embark on the Queen May, our setting for Ooo La La. Lower down in the fountain area, our ballroom, a live 1920s dance orchestra weaves evocative melodies as dancing couples waltz and foxtrot throughout the evening. In the main performance space of the Post Alley through-way, an ensemble of five French waiters woo audience members, taking imaginary orders for bygone delicacies. Further down, in the cabin area, an ensemble of lovesick British maids swoon o ver French love poetry while “dusting” audience members with gorgeous vintage feather dusters. Above, in the balconies, an ensemble of Dove Maidens lower baskets of sugar “wishing eggs” containing instructions for audience members on how to make their wish come true.

The extravaganza builds into a delirious concoction of Madame Cleo’s World-Renowned Sister Poodle Troupe (an ensemble of five modern dancers), who arrive in a flurry of vintage Bentleys. The troupe’s high jinks crescendo to the jubilant entrance of the parade of the bakers (150 lindy hop dancers), the dance of the cakes, and the crowning of live performing poodles as the Queens of May.
Ooo La La draws audience members into a world of elegance and whimsy. It invites them to let go of the mundane and to pass through the veil of the imagination into the sublime world of the dream. The two-hour performance is unabashedly celebratory, evocative of the embarkation of a grand ocean liner of the early 20th century. The opulent atmosphere is fun and free. Audience members can enter the world at any point during the evening, have a full, sweeping experience of surprise and delight, and dance the night away.

But all you really need to know is that there will be lots of free cake and dancing.

If you’re curious about what kind of dancing my troupe does, here they are doing a routine at the US open in 1999, where they won third place (since then it’s stopped being a competitive dance team)…

Hmm, apparently YouTube no longer has that video.  Here’s a promotional video for the troupe you can check out instead.



Intro
January 28, 2008, 7:28 pm
Filed under: Athletic, Dancing, Design, Entertainment, Food, Music, Neat Stuff, Random, Travel

So I’m starting up a blog and I think it’s going to be about a lot of very random stuff. So just to get things started, I’m throwing together a quick sampler of the types of entries you might encounter as my blog continues….

Travel – I figure most trips I take will be worthy of at least a little blip in my blog, but I’ll try to keep things light, focusing mainly on the highlights. For instance, if I were to recap the visits to Iowa that I took last October, it might look something like this:

Had to go to Iowa for work over and over again. The first trip was slightly novel, but even that wore off pretty quickly. I have decided that I hate Northwest Airlines (cranky personnel, evil seating system that makes you sit in the back of the plane unless you join their little club, and no entertainment whatsoever on board. Grrr, I hate them). Almost no food in Iowa is really worth mentioning, but our hotel somehow managed to have this amazing chocolate cake with a molten center that comes with Haagen-Dazs ice cream, a big pile of whipped cream, and a small tureen of hot fudge. That cake may have been the highlight of the entire series of trips. The business stuff was okay, although it got a little repetitive by the fourth trip, and the real climax was on trip number three when Northwest sent my luggage to the wrong airport under someone else’s name. By the end of that week I was so frazzled that I almost burst into tears when I went to my local wireless store and found out that they no longer carry chargers for my cell phone (which was needed to replace the one still lost in my luggage, of course). And for some reason being in Iowa made me want to drink Coke all the time, which I almost never drink at home. It was a bizarre time…

Athletic Stuff – I tend to be always working toward some type of athletic something-or-other, so odds are it will come up from time to time. As for specific events you might hear about this year, I’m hoping to run the Vancouver Half Marathon in early may, I’m signed up for the Ragnar Northwest Passage Relay in July, and also for Cascade Bicycle Club’s RSVP in August. And I really hope I manage to squeeze in a triathlon this summer too.

Dancing – I don’t know how often this will come up, but I am in a swing dance performance troupe, so there’s bound to be an announcement or something whenever we have performances (expect to see us at Folklife in May!). Plus I might occasionally be inclined to rave about a particularly excellent night out dancing, like two weeks ago when a friend from the troupe persuaded me to go dancing at the Highliner, a gritty little dive bar at the fisherman’s terminal. I got to dance with super great dancers (including of course Mike, the troupe guy, who is a blast to dance with), and I had this one amazing dance with a random guy I had never danced with before named Steve, who I think may have been my dancing soul mate. It was awesome.

(if you’re curious about my troupe, it’s the Savoy Swing Club Performance Troupe)

Neat Stuff – One of the hazards of being a designer is finding really cool stuff that you really really want to have and then discovering how ridiculously expensive it is. A good example of this is the Selk Bag. It’s a sleeping bag with arms and legs and a big hood, so you can get up and frolic in the middle of the night without giving up the happy cozy warmth of your bedding, plus you get to look like a giant teddy bear. While recognizing that the practicality of this item is nearly nonexistent, I seriously want one. I actually think the cost may have come down since I first discovered this brilliant product, so don’t be shocked if you see a giant teddy bear-ish figure frolicking in the middle of the night.

selk3.jpg

(the designer’s website)

Music – Every once in a while I get pretty excited about some new song I’ve discovered or an awesome playlist I’ve just put together. I expect this enthusiasm will eventually spill over onto my blog.

Entertainment – Sometimes there are just entertaining things in the world which simply must be shared. For instance, I found this video on the blog of a boy I like and it made me like him even more:

(there might be a lot of copying fun things from other people in this category)

Food – I get pretty excited about really good food (or drinks), especially ice cream. In this category you might see raves about super delicious things I’ve discovered lately (like Margaret’s homeade apricot pistachio ice cream last night, where the apricot flavor permeated the ice cream in a truly amazing way) or rants about food gone wrong, like how it seems nearly every restaurant makes chocolate milkshakes with vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup and it’s just wrong. Vanilla has no place in a chocolate milkshake and in my opinion the only way to properly make a chocolate milkshake is from chocolate ice cream (I personally choose Ultra Chocolate, made by Double Rainbow and sold at Trader Joes)

Random – I’m sure other nonsense will find its way into my blog as well, like updates on my exciting effort to knit a scarf and testing out the ‘world’s best paper airplane’ according to the dangerous book for boys.

Stay tuned!