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I don’t know if it’s too much yoga and not enough dance, but I can’t seem to find the inspiration to write much lately. Personal blogs are interesting that way; they do tend to come and go, ebb and flow with the whims of the writer. Similarly, my blogroll changes as blogs I follow change or fall into inactivity. Not that I’ve been reading many blogs lately either. But here are a few that I enjoy following lately.

Apartment Therapy – If you live in a small space like me, those lavish spreads in traditional design magazines and blogs are hard to relate to. Apartment Therapy is a blog/web magazine that gives inspiration to those of us who don’t want to sacrifice style in tight quarters. From inspiring color schemes to unique ways to jazz up an entryway (or the wall by your door if you don’t technically have an “entryway”), I have gotten many ideas from this blog that I’ve been able to apply to my own living space.

This is Why You’re Fat – Only in America… Bacon, deep frying, and food-on-a-stick feature prominently on this blog of all culinary creations obscene. Yes, it’s an offensive name, but let’s face it– if you ate stuff like this on a regular basis, I don’t see how you could be skinny (or healthy).  I dare you to look through such creations as The Bacone (A bacon cone filled with scrambled eggs and country gravy topped with a biscuit) or the Fat Sam (Cheesesteak sandwich with chicken fingers, french fries, mozzarella sticks, ketchup, lettuce, tomato, bacon, and topped with egg and hot sauce) without giggling just a little bit.

Jodi’s Blog – I always enjoy following my friend, the talented artist Jodi Hoover’s blog. But never have I enjoyed it more than in the last few days as she blogs The World Beard and Moustache Championships. Jodi’s husband Mickey proudly represented Maryland with his full face of hair. I can’t tell you how entertained I have been reading about the Parade of Beards, and the politics of the World Beard and Moustache Association, and The Beards, an Australian band that, as Jodi explains, “They sing songs about beards for people with beards.”

Here, to brighten your Monday morning, is the amazing Santo Rico salsa company.

Thanks to Salsa Gigolo for bringing this to my attention.

As lime mine aria points out, this time lapse video of a baby playing is like a dance. It is also a mighty adorable baby.

Salseros dance to the music of Orquesta Ashe at Adams Morgan in DCSometimes when you’ve been doing something for years, you think you’ve thought all the thoughts there are to be thought about it. But an outside perspective can reveal new insights.

Here are three insights into salsa which encapsulate what I’ve always loved about it in a very concise way:

“1) salsa dancers, men and women of all ages and sizes, take pride in their bodies;

2) dancers seek partners who match their skill level, not those who are the best looking;

3) after taking only two lessons […one can learn enough] to follow the rhythm of the dancers.”

This is excerpted from an article by Carrie Hagen of phillyist (read the whole thing, it’s a good article), who accompanied my friend and salsera/writer extraordinaire Mathina to a mambo social. What she captures with these three observations is the 1) accepting, 2) egalitarian, and 3) accessible nature of salsa and salsa culture.

Thanks to Clinton Yates over at the DC Express Blog Log for featuring my post on Superstars of Dance in both the online and print version. It was so cool to open up my free daily paper on my morning commute and see my words in print. If you’ve come over from Express, welcome!

This is actually the second time Express has linked to me, the first time was on November 20, for my post on Rahm Emanuel’s ballet background. This is the kind of stuff that makes this unpaid writing pasttime so rewarding.

While we’re on the subject of Superstars of Dance, did anyone watch the second installment last night? Did it get any better? Any particular dances we should check out on YouTube?

After starting a dance bloggers group on facebook and finding the format inflexible, Deborah Friedes turned to her tech-savvy boyfriend for a better solution.

The result is Friedes’ and Tal Galili’s DanceBloggers.com. It is primarily an aggregator of dance blogs, one that anyone can submit theirs to. As of now, there are 37 blogs on the contributors list, several of which I did not know about. ( ed.: On a self-absorbed note, I have to pat myself on the back for having a blog title that almost always gets listed first in alphabetical order. Having a last name towards the end of the alphabet, I’m not used to ever being first on any list.)

Since I had last visited just about two days ago, new features were added, including a members list and facebookesque Wall. This is a simple idea that has serious potential. Good idea, Deborah and Tal!

Here’s a screenshot:

dance-bloggers

What are some notable new blogs about dance? What’s interesting about them?

Anything that has become active in the past 6 months or so is fair game. I need to update my blogroll and want your help!

I never would have dreamed when I started this blog that I could be an inspirational to anyone. After all, I am but an amateur dancer with no particular great ability, just a love for doing it. Over the course of keeping this blog, I’ve gotten some very nice comments from readers, but this one, from Romy in Lebanon, takes the cake:

“Dear Maria, i just fell upon your blog tonight by accident, i wasn’t even researching dance topics on the internet. Though funny enough, the topic has been in the back of mind for a couple of days now. See, i am in my mid twenties, i have already majored in computer animation, and now i find myself aching to pick up dancing seriously. A childhood dream. I visited paris to see if i can start there, and everyone around me, including universities told me the same thing you were saying, that i late. That completely discouraged me, and now seeing your blog and reading your story was a breath of fresh air. Could i really still start dancing? i am really an amateur. Is it a beautiful world after all, even when you pick it up seriously? I am bookmarking your blog, and will start reading your posts one by one. Hope you will be the Sign for me as i feel it might be. Keep it up Maria.”

I believe that inspiration is not in the greatness of your acts but in giving some voice or hope to someone that sees a part of themselves in you. It has always been my goal to find meaning in everything I do. Just writing for myself gives me enough meaning, but to know that I’ve affected others makes my heart feel very full. Thanks so much to Romy and my other readers that have given me this gift!!

I enjoy visiting The “Blog” of “Unnecessary” Quotation Marks from time to time for a chuckle. Today, one of the featured offenders was none other than a certain local ballroom/salsa teacher who has long regaled us with his excessive and unnecessary use of punctuation. In fact, this particular ballroom studio is right across the hallway from the Joy of Motion location I visit every Tuesday for class. I always think it’s funny when non-dance blogs I follow suddenly veer into more familiar territory.

The Tony Award nominees were announced today and the cat in the front was so excited he threw his feather headdress in the air and made some purrfect jazz hands. The black cat in the background is all like, “Fosse is sooo two decades ago, it’s all about salsa and hip hop on Broadway now. Let me see you shake your caderas.

In the Heights, a musical featuring some amazing salsa and hip hop dancing (at least from the youtube clips I’ve seen) that has broken the mold for Tony nominees, leading the pack with 13 nominations. I’ve been so excited to see it and now these accolades will ensure that I’ll have to wait even longer to snag tickets. Dear Producers, let it be known that I will shamelessly promote your musical on this blog if you comp me tickets to In the Heights. I would like to see Celia as well.

My world shrank a little when my journalist friend Sadie messaged me on Facebook a few weeks ago, “I am interviewing your friend Boris for a story I’m writing. How do you know him?” The friend in question was my dance blogosphere buddy Boris Willis of Dance a Day fame, and who she must have noticed on my Facebook friends list.

The article, a profile of DC’s Shaw neighborhood features Boris and other residents (including an 81 year old woman who was a dancer during the U Street entertainment heyday under the stage name “The Body”), giving some nice background and a community context to his Dance a Day project. Congratulations, Boris and Sadie!

An interesting factoid is that Shaw is allegedly DC’s “bloggiest neighborhood,” with an interesting array of online perspectives. Another Shaw blog mentioned in the article is Treebox Vodka, which despite its intriguing name is about cleaning up trash in the neighborhood. With the blogosphere being as vast as it is, I love the idea of envisioning it in terms of bloggers’ physical proximity, rather than just by topic. I have always thought of my online community in terms of those that write about dance, but Sadie’s article has inspired me to tap into blogs in my area.

Ok, I’m four days late, but better late than ever

First things first. By consensus of my readers, the mysterious circle-worshiping necklaces are apparently wireless microphones. It’s a sneaky way to do it and explains why there was some creative accessorizing with scarves this week to try to disguise them. Yes, the viewers have caught on. Seriously, half my traffic this week was driven by folks googling “step it up and dance circle necklace.”

**SPOILER ALERT**

My assessment of Step It Up and Dance‘s episode 4 was summed up by Nick this week, when he said “twenty years of ballet class down the drain.” Read the rest of this entry »

I haven’t done a Dance on the Web in a really long time. I’ve been pretty out of touch with the blogosphere over the last month or so for various reasons, so this is me attempting to get caught up with what’s out there, including exploring some new dance blogs. A lot of them seem to have popped up recently.

A Time to Dance reached 20,000 hits today. It is so exciting to see how my readership is growing — each month surpasses the previous one in leaps and bounds. This blog is in its eighth month and I have no plans to stop anytime soon. Writing about dance would not be nearly as fun without the give and take between blogger and commenters.

Thanks for reading!

LOVELY!

Danciti, did you take this picture?

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