today in advanced/professional modern dance class, i had what some might call. . . thoughts. while staring at the Wade Madsen, standing completely motionless and open mouthed, doing my best to graph his spiraling about the front of the room thru the cartesian coordinate grid i mentally superimposed around him, a small stream of information trickled in and dispersed itself through my body. while this stream made its gurgly way around the rocks and bones of my still dry from the evening sleep self, a thought in the form of a very large, benevolent bird of prey (the kind that look like they're wearing feather sweat pants) swooped through my field of vision with the announcement that: i don't really know this language very well. (figuratively, now, though for sure there's a definite parallel here with my relationship to the spanish language). i'm seeing this language called dance, and seeing all the other students speak it back to Wade in jealousy inducing fluency. i'm like a foreigner, or ESL person out of their element. but, well, i speak the language, and i understand it on more than just a fundamental level, but my vocabulary is pretty rudimentary. my sentences come out clunky and sometimes awkward, and sometimes spot on, and for sure at some point i've totally sounded out a swear word on accident.
enough to keep me from coming to class? almost.
but i keep coming back.
partially influenced by the dry fact that this is class and last i checked class is for people to learn something they have little to no previous knowledge of.
partially influenced by the 'eh, fuck it' voice pulling my dance pants up over my hips and pushing me out toward the nearest back corner of the room.
oh, and i do get a kick out of it, dancing. it feels good, this weird language. even though my brain hurts from sometimes from the concentration and try as i might, i can't shake the accent.
and then i started really thinking and came to the conclusion that if how i move can be likened to speaking with a heavy accent, then all might not be lost.
even though i grew up around strong accents, and carried a slight accent growing up (a small mouthful of words still escape my mouth with the subtlest twinge of foreign), i am a bona fide individualistic individual born and raised in the continental us of a, and think that accents are one of the most crush worthy circumstantial character traits a person can have (with maybe one or two exceptions that i can't think of off the top of my head but would know it from the second i heard the first syllabic utterance of it). me thinks i am not alone in this affinity. i mean, come on, the mystery! the intrigue! the borderline fetishization of other cultures! to hear those familiar to the point of disappearing into the gross aural scenery phonemes spit shined and carefully held up to the light is such a refreshing wash of sensation, who wouldn't be charmed?
now, i suppose if you live somewhere where culture crossings form a interesting lattice structure and not just a lonely x or single hashtag, or if you grow up with accents around you, or coming out of you, you may or may not be immune to said weakness. but probably not. and even if you are irked by one accent, there are 6,500ish in the world (googled it), so yr still not impervious to the allure of an alien lilt, or mis-accented syllable.
so now, if all that holds true, which it does, we who came to dance at a late age (relatively speaking) can step ball chain with ease knowing that if our physicalized soliloquy feels or is perceived by others as ungainly, or dare i say, graceless, however grammatically sound, it is actually, logically, a work of art that is nothing short of, como se dice. . . exotic.