We spent many long, hot hours at the fair that day, collected free stuff, ate greasy stuff, and bought a can of dried salsa that will probably outlast my future grandchildren, but the highlight has to be our moment in the spotlight, up on that little round stage, dancing a square and wishing I could be anywhere else but there. It was awesome. And now I no longer worry about square dancing nightmares cause I’ve lived it and survived. But the glass eye thing could haunt me for a while yet.
Labor day is a holiday for many and a work day for those with jobs. Which is actually a good thing since we’re in such an economic turndown, or depression, or whatever they choose to call it these days. The people without jobs probably call it, Crapola-on-a-stick, in celebration of Labor Day also being the last day of the Minnesota Fair.
I went to the fair last week, while it was still hot enough to bake chocolate chip cookies on the sidewalk. I’m pretty sure that was how “Sweet Martha’s” kept baking during the power outage that day. Other places were closed for a time, but not the cookie house. They were handing out cookies faster than condoms from a high school nurse.
My friend and I were able to do something that has always been a dream of mine–(actually more of a nightmare)–Square dancing. Yes, you read that right. An old man (much older than me) literally yanked our lemonades from our hands and pulled us up on the stage in forced participation of a rousing semblance of the Art Linkletter Show.
Four of us women contestants, four feeble, crusty, male dance partners with sweaty hands, and one obnoxious “caller” with a microphone, was all it took to bring out the hidden dancer within me. I know I’ve stated before that Baptists Don’t Dance, but you should have seen me. I’m sure it was an awesome sight to behold. I definitely had my Square on.
The short little, gnarled man I was paired with had one snaggle tooth and possibly a glass eye. It stared unblinkingly as we turned to “face our partners,” making me look away like my dog does when we have stare-downs. His hands were twisted with arthritis, but he gripped my fingers tight enough to keep me from running off. He wasn’t much of a talker, but when I asked him directly, he informed me that he’d been square dancing for twenty-eight years. Obviously he liked his women in twirly, ruffled skirts and peasant blouses.
I’m still not sure what a “dosy doe” is but if Simon Cowell had passed our way I think he would have given us a yellow ticket to go on to the Hollywood phase of Square Dancing.