Dancing with the co-workers

There was a party Friday night at work. In a world where all the workers who never get anything extra are expected to cut costs, er, in a world where we delight in helping our employer earn a bigger and bigger profit, the section my department belongs to managed to save NOK 6 million in 2007. And for that, we got an unscheduled (as in, not on the budget) party.

I wasn’t really in a party mood, being more in the mood for staying at home in comfy clothes front of the TV, but affirmed on my way to the party that I would be delightful. I knew that if others enjoyed my company, I would enjoy theirs.

I was right. My boss commented on it. Said I was “holding up well”. Dancing. Socializing. Staying. To my surprise, I was among the last to leave. I left at 1:20-ish AM, after assuming I’d be out of there by 10 PM-ish.

Many of the people at the party were the same people who had been invited to my anniversary party. The RSVP date was Friday. I wondered if I should “sell” myself in some way, and then decided to just enjoy myself, no pressure. Just be happy.

We did have a organizing committee for Friday’s party and they decided we had to do more than eat and drink, so they announced we would do our own version of “Dancing with the Stars”. Eight couples were picked by drawing names out of a hat (and since that is the way my life is, I knew I would be picked and I was), and then we drew which dance to perform for the “judges”. I got to dance boogie-woogie with one of the janitors and we danced a more 50’s style swing, so we didn’t win.

Before the contest, we were waiting for the couples who were trying to learn the paso doble in 10 minutes (make that 20), so one of the committee members donned cowgirl gear to teach us a dance. That’s when I realized I had misheard her. I heard “reinlender” (Schottish), which I know very well and enjoy, when what she had said was “line dance”.

I suck at pedal co-ordination. It’s the funniest thing: I am Ginger Rogers in the arms of a man on the floor, but on my own, I have absolutely no brain-eye-foot coordination. For this reason I flunked jazz dance but aced modern, and I always stood in the rear during aerobics so as not to share my confusion. There is something amiss with me because it also took me four months to learn to waltz, a dance others kept telling me was “easy”. But now I can waltz! Still, I made an effort to learn the line dance. I think it would have been fun if we all got the hang of a good line dance. I think it would have been fun if I got the hang of it after six tries rather than still stumbling around after twelve. My consolation is that I was the only one still willing to try at that point.

The party started to lull after our competition and a round of cake and coffee, so somebody scrounged around and found music to dance to. The majority does love to dance, so I spent the rest of the evening being Ginger Rogers with several Fred Astairs.

And that probably explains why I didn’t leave until well past 1, tired but happy.

By Keera Ann Fox

I am a bi-lingual American who has lived most of my life in Norway.
Jeg er en tospråklig amerikaner som har bodd mesteparten av mitt liv i Norge.

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