Thursday, November 8, 2012

Channeling My Inner Gigi

At the ripe old age of 55, a couple of things are troubling:
  1. I can't remember squat.  
  2. I'm very uncoordinated.  
Before you suggest that I may have had a stroke, let me explain it in relative terms.  I grew up dancing.  As a child I took "modern dance" from Miss Rhea in Carthage.  I was a drill team girl in high school.  I took ballet and tap during my college years.  I'm tellin' ya.  This girl could dance.    I am no stranger to the step-ball-change.  Now, I trip over both of my left feet.

I came up with the idea that I would be less coordinated if I started doing Zumba.  To exercise the body is to exercise the mind!  My general apathy about fitness steers me from gyms with their weights and power classes.  I needed something fun and inspiring.  There is NO WAY I would participate in a public Zumba class.  No.  Way.  So, I went in search of fun fitness on none other than YouTube.  That's where I found Gigi.  Zumba Gigi.

Gigi, from Boca Raton, has thick long black locks and wears a black fedora.  I would describe her style as urban hip-hop with a 6 pack of chiseled abs thrown in.  In this video she appears at 00:09 wearing a white hoodie trimmed with white fur and a black fedora.   All I could think about was whether or not she would sweat like a pig or simply glisten like a princess.  She glistened.

I stood this morning in my living room between two chairs and the couch wearing Nike shorts and the t-shirt I wore yesterday that was still on the floor of the bathroom this morning.  My hair was and still is wild and sleepy.  This was my 3rd "class" with Gigi.  During the first session, I was transfixed by Gigi's smooth moves - the subtle, relaxed movements of her arms, the effortless wiggle of her hips, the way she gracefully arranges her fedora with the tips of her fingers.

Gigi doesn't bellow out cues like "Grapevine!!" and "Punching Bag!"  She gracefully gestures with one hand signaling go this way or that.  During the class, she moves around the dancers pulling this lady and that up to the front to show off their Samba moves or Bollywood hip thrusts.  Gigi dances like she's at a Joy Festival Street Dance.  I want that.  I want to dance at Gigi's Joy Festival Street Dance.

Last Monday, I set a goal.  I'm going to learn all of the dance steps of Gigi's 49:47 workout. C'mon, Carolyn!  You can do it!  Isn't most of it just combinations of box steps and step-ball-changes?  How hard can this be?  Remember how you danced the Bump in high school and moved with the groove of the Electric Slide?!  You got this!

Today, I shortened my short term goal.  I'm going to try to just master the footwork of each dance.  I'm going to pause and rewind until I get it right.  What I really wish is that you could come over and "Gigi" with me.  Arms and legs would be flailing.  We'd crash into each other grapevine-ing around the ottoman.  Our belly dance moves would have our bellies wiggling long after Gigi moved on to a Samba.  It would be a great ab workout because we would be rolling on the floor laughing until our stomach muscles cried "Uncle!"

I wish that we could watch Gigi's class together in my living room with Classic Cokes and a big barrel of buttered popcorn.  I would love to have an ear to bend with my color commentary.  There's Amazing-Shiny-Short-Hair Girl [38:50] whose hair has a life of its own.  I've named her Casey because she reminds me of my friend named Casey.  I swear that her lustrous tresses get a better workout than I do.  Swing!  Swing, Swiiiiiish!  Oh, see the lady in the blue yoga pants and yellow top there in the back?  She's my girl!  Cindy is her name.  My short term goal is to dance at least as well as her.  In one of the many Gigi youtube videos is my favorite girl, Meloyde, joyous, enthusiatic, Meloyde.  Pronounced "me-loyd."  [My XO "Go Purple" sisters will know who she reminds me of!]  Meloyde is the master of the walk and wiggle [22:22]. 

I must run to the hip-hop store at the mall to find some of those pants that have ribbons dangling down from the hip pockets and knees and a little hot pink yoga bra.  The right clothes will bring me one step closer to becoming Gigi.  I may even invest in a long, black wig and a fedora.  I WILL learn how to walk and wiggle.  Whatever it takes.  Whatever it takes.

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