One Day at a Time

Yeah, I’m still on the right side of the dirt. There was just a lot of running around this weekend and then lots of work on Monday and Tuesday.

Friday we ate ourselves stupid at a fondue party (a couple that I will hereafter refer to as The Hillfolk make excellent fondue), Saturday it was up to Berkeley with another couple* for a flea market, Tribal Throwdown, Lacis, and a St. Patrick’s Day supper, Sunday it was otters and then over to yet another couples’ for High Tea and meeting their new baby boy, Monday and Tuesday it was all-day meetings with people from my company’s new development partner, then staying late to catch up on all the work that didn’t get done because of the meetings. Whew.

The flea market was great, as flea markets tend to be. Such an odd assortment of stuff! I got some patchwork and mirror belts for dance – with some long scrap yarn* fringe these will look cool, I think. R:tAG found a board game (Trinity Battleground) for cheap, too.

Tribal Throwdown was good… smallish but that’s how I like my conventions. I took a workshop with Jill Parker and realized once again that it takes me much longer than most people to learn kinetically. I don’t think dance workshops have a good ROI for me; I need repetition, mirrors, and patient teachers who are willing to explain the same thing a bunch of different ways (usually not practical in a typical size workshop). This was on the same weekend as Rakkasah and I suspect there is an ugly story behind that, but in practice it’s not bad since Rakkasah is more general and Tribal Throwdown (as implied by its name) focuses on ATS and tribal fusion. From what I hear, though, the vending at Rakkasah is amazing. Like, football field-sized room amazing. Probably a good thing I didn’t go. I’m not performing, so there’s really no reason to buy lots of pretty, sparkly things… mmmm… shiny…

OK, I’m back now. After the dance thing (the men went off to do a tour of the gaming and book stores of Berkeley while we danced) we went to Lacis which is The Most Amazing Historical Costuming Store EVAR. The web site is sort of sad (over ten years old!) and does not reflect the jaw-dropping glory that is Lacis. And it turns out a friend of ours* has started working there, so I spent about two hours there without even really realizing it, and didn't even see a whole room of the store, and only left because they closed the shop and kicked me out (and because my companions were all agitating for supper. Wimps.). So we had sushi at the Drunken Fish for our St. Patrick’s Day supper****

Sunday was a members-only preview of the Wild About Otters exhibit at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, so we took The Hillfolk down to check it out. Otters are cool. R:tAG was pleased.

Oh, and somewhere in there we saw the new animated Hellboy – Sword of Storms movie. It was really quite good. I think I prefer animated to live action for stuff like this (Exhibit B: Clone Wars)

And my parents are coming for a visit next week. Busy, busy, busy!

* The female half is in my dance class and is also a costuming geek, the male half is a computer/gaming geek and therefore gets along with R:tAG very well. I might have to come up with blog-worthy nicknames for them since we’re hanging out a lot.

** I have a little bit of scrap yarn.

*** One of the couple with whom we went to the idyllic mountain stream

**** Last year we had Mexican. Our general policy for holidays is to find a restaurant of an ethnicity as far away as possible from the one celebrating the holiday. Irish pubs are for Cinco de Mayo.


  1. Zena said...

    Tribal Throwdown: jealous :-) You're right in the middle* of so much tribal stuff. In Stoon, we are the tribal stuff, which is kinda cool but kinda lonely - less opportunity for inspiration.

    * Not 'at the epicentre', because then it would be happening under the earth's surface.  

  2. cenobyte said...

    I don't think I like the idea of you hanging out with other people called "Jill"

    "Tribal Throwdown" sounds like so much fun. And like something that ought to be promoted on Fox!. "When dance styles collide. Tribal Throwdown, next on Fox!"  

  3. Amy said...

    Zena: Yep, it's pretty darn cool. It's really interesting to see the evolution; Mayurichaal is a lot more traditional, I think, than groups around here (kind of like the Newfoundlanders having traces of Elizabethan dialect that have died out in England). Probably the most startling "Tribal" group I saw here was one that tried to incorporate Native elements... their costumes looked sort of Cree/ElfQuest/Mad Max (leather, beadwork and feathers) and they had some Native dance elements (rhythmic hopping circles... am I making sense?) but *also* used raks sharqui swords and moves. They were all white, not that that makes much difference in such a borrowing-based dance form, I suppose, but it was... odd. I don't think that would go over in Saskatchewan.

    We don't use words like "epicentre." The earthquakes might hear.

    Jill: Don't worry, I was hardly hanging out with her. She shall be JNTCO (Jill Not the Cool One).  

  4. Zena said...

    Yeah, we're hardcore traditional (if that makes sense in such a new dance form), especially since J has done the teacher certification. There are a couple moves that I remember from before that have been pretty much abandoned in favour of putting together a solid FCBD base.

    A lot of tribal fusion stuff interests me too, though some of the experiments just don't work for me. (e.g. bellydance + Japanese > nope, I've seen a Japanese woman try to bellydance in a kimono [at my wedding - she was a sport], kimono = anti-bellydance.)

    The Aboriginal fusion is interesting, not sure if it would quite work for me. I think you're right - it wouldn't go over in SK. The majority of white people aren't interested, and the Aboriginal people could validly cry cultural appropriation.

    Personally I don't have a problem with using elements for costume (jingle cones, quills, feathers etc) - they're essentially trade items. But picking up certain dance or ceremonial practices might get a bit dodgy.  


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