So first of all, HI SNITCHES! I’ve been away… doing a little of this:
And a teeny, tiny bit of this:
So basically, my birthday happened (eww, getting old, gross) which meant a pilgrimage to my home country (upstate New York) to hang out with my parents and re-enact parts of my childhood, like looking at my mom’s flower bed, walking around the block with my lil sis, and going flying with my dad.
My dad, who’s closing in on his 1000th hour in the sky, has been flying since the 70’s for fun…. because people did weird shit like that for fun in the 70’s.
I was raised on 20 minute trips to the Oneida County Airport, saying “Niner niner!” and the gumball machine by the Upstate Flying Club sign out counter. (Gum helps you equalize your ears, which was always my excuse for begging for some, pre-flight).
A few years ago, while I was still coming home for the summers, I was even working on my pilot’s license, to my dad’s delight. I had a female flight instructor named Adina that I paid for with my lifeguarding money ($75 an hour!), studied my flash cards, and wrote in flight sessions in my log book. All until I ran out of money and moved to New York City to be A Writer.
Now, not so much to my dad’s delight, I dance on poles. And write! But it’s the dancing on poles part that I know bugs him.
My mom’s having a hard time with my new hobby too.
They were both okay with my illustrious bellydance career (I was in an off-off-off broadway show!), but, though that arguably involved less clothing, it was more easily put in the “art” category of dance.
Now, even when I try to tell my parents about climbs, spins, and inversions I’m working on (so not sexy! This is totally a serious sport!) they tell me I’ll paralyze myself.
You’ll shoot yer eye out, kid!
It’s impossible to win: do spinning and floorwork, you’re too sexy. Do inversions and holds, you’re PUTTING YOUR LIFE IN DANGER, CATHY.
Truth of the matter is, pole IS sexy. It DOES involve your body, and scantily-cladness.
Maybe that’s okay.
Our manager likes to say at EDC that it takes balls to call ourselves “Exotic Dance Central,” while it’s easier to go by “pole fitness” something or other, and not offend anybody.
But at the end of the day, whatever stereotypes or fears people have about connections to The Industry That Shall Not Be Named, pole dancing is still dancing on a pole. Some people are going to call it exercise, some people are going to call it stripping. But what is really is is dance.
Use it to get fit. Use it to feel sexy. Use it for whatever you can get from it, and enjoy every minute.
Just don’t use it for approval from others–because that might be a taller order.
I especially know my dad will be a hard sell, since he still sees me as a 5 year old wearing a huge headset and chewing gumballs. But I’m going to keep working on him. I have this hunch that when you’re doing things with a pure heart, other people will come around.
Meanwhile, I did get SOME family approval during my trip–from my little sis (not so little at 23). She picked up my camera while I was out and found a few practice videos. I was immediately concerned when she told me she watched them, but she just smiled and said… “That was really cool.”
Gotta love family.
How do you guys talk to your family about dance? Do you feel like you get a lot of judgement from people?
Spins class tonight at 7–I’m back and getting straight into the swing of things 🙂