Last night I went to a hangar dance — one of those dances held in airport hangars where lots of people dress in WWII era clothes and dance to WWII era music… or just show up and swing dance. The evening could have been a disaster. The music was too slow (even when we requested upbeat music, they played it at half speed), and even though most of my favorite dancers were there the bitter cold seems to have kept most people away.
And yet we managed to have a really good time anyway. For one thing, the trombone player looked and acted exactly like Oscar Madison from the Odd Couple. He sat slouched in his chair with his legs crossed in that lazy middle-aged-man way and improvised his way through an entire evening of music. Once he even took the microphone and crooned to us in a most Oscar-like way. As we sat on the sidelines and waited for dance-able music, we’d do Oscar imitations and send ourselves into stitches. “I want you out of here, Felix! Out!”
Another highlight was having somebody who’d been there for the dinner portion of the night come up to me and ask the name of our dance troupe. We all danced so well, she said, that she thought we were affiliated with a reenactment group. Cool! I’ve been mistaken for a professional dancer!!
But what really saved the evening from being a $10/3-hour-round-trip/bad-music disaster was the group of people I got to hang out with. If you have to sit out 8 out of every 10 dances, it sure helps if you’re sitting out with a bunch of really fun people.