Going for it is a term I’ve come to appreciate of late. Of course going for it doesn’t always mean you’re going to get it, or be good at it. But it’s an opportunity to for something.. something that might be achievable. It’s better to have tried and failed that not got off your bloody arse and tired at all. Somebody old and wise said that in the ‘olde days’
But as I have matured I find going for it a lot more appealing. Let’s face it when we were all younger embarrassment was a key factor in us, well at least me trying new things.
A few months back I did something I never in my life thought I’d do, wait for it, I went to a burlesque class. Oh yes indeed I did. Well the simple truth is that I’d always thought it was very glamorous, I loved all the clothes and the dancing, the innuendo. It was a mystery to me.
A friend of mine, who shall at this time remain nameless, informed me that her niece was a dance instructor and was in the process of putting together a burlesque class together.
‘Sign us up’ sez I all enthusiastic like.
The truth is I’d no idea what it all entailed, having been all enthusiastic with my friend, fear gripped me, what would I have to wear. I scanned the internet looking for images of burlesque dancers.
Oh God Oh God there they all scantily dressed , with suspenders and tassels. I’d have to get suspenders and stockings, not a chance in hell I was doing the tassels, I needed a corset too. Where could I buy a corset, would it be comfy. Oh this wasn’t a good idea at all at all.
I watched Lady Marmalade on YouTube and was relieved that most of them were wearing big drawers, with frills naturally, but no feckin tassels.
‘Now we can wear comfy clothes’ my nameless friend declared much to my relief.
‘For now anyway, when we get tot the end we can dress up’ she concluded.
Which was good news for me as I still had time to look for a corset and frilly drawers. I quite fancied a bowler hat, like the dancer in Cabaret. I was definitely excited about learning to dance.
We arrived for our very first dance lesson and I must admit with some trepidation, but I’d decided I was just going to go for it. I didn’t care if I could dance or not , I didn’t care if I was rhythmless I was going to give this my best shot.
We assembled with the masses, well about ten other women of a similar age, who like us were just there for an introduction to burlesque. While and it’s always the same there’s a couple of people who are ‘armature professionals’ you know the sort they are members of an ‘amature dramatic society’. So they know more than the rest of us about dance and are capable of taking instruction without giggling. They had proper dance shoes and tights with off the shoulder tops. I had yoga pants and converse.
Now, if you’ve never been to a dance studio, I never had, let me tell you, the walls are mirrored, all of the bloody walls are mirrored. So you can see yourself from various angles and at various times and occasionally scare the bejesus out of yourself.
We listened to our dance instructor as she explained burlesque and some dance moves. She was excellent, she didn’t rush us she took her time and showed us each move slowly, while, ‘amateur dramatic professionals’ were quite impatient with our lack of knowledge and our inane giggling.
We were far from deterred, we burlesqued on, actually we looked like a pair of ejits trying to avoid a swarm of bees while ‘amateur dramatic professionals’ shimmed and shook their boobs and booties, that’s tits and arse to you and me. But they did it well.
We practiced and we too shook our boobs and booties, at this point I should point out that my boobs operate independently of my body and one another and danced whichever way they wanted, which for some reason was the opposite way that I was dancing. Yes I was dancing and I loved it.
‘Welcome to burlesque’ belted out over the speakers in the dance studio. Cher was in the room and so were we. Burlesqueing.
Our moment of glory had arrived, Cher was there, we were there, it was our turn to burlesque across the floor in front of the mirrored walls and the other burleseque queens. Then I saw myself in all my burlesque glory like an extra in a comedy show counting my steps as I went.
I didn’t look sexy or alluring. I looked confused and hot, with wandering boobs. This was going to take a lot more practice and possible some tassels.
But I went for it , we did, we laughed, we shimmed and we sang along to Cher.
The Joy of Going for It