A Tutorial About Argentine Tango Dancing
TANGO, OUR DANCE
Chapter 21: All About Eva
|Last updated, 12/29/00|
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|The biblical story seems
to indicate that Eva got to take the rap for turning Paradise
into a living hell for the Creator's ultimate creation, Da
Man. Looks like the First Guy leisurely enjoyed the
pleasantries of an ideal world created just for him and the fruit of his
ribs, with only one caveat to be aware of (actually two, stay away from
the Forbidden Tree and don't dance to Piazzolla).
One day, the First Gal was hanging around the garden followed
by a snake who kept telling her, an apple a day keeps the doctor away.
Eventually Eva succumbed to the temptation and took a bite
from the fruit of the Forbidden Tree and sweet talked Da
Man into doing the same.
And so the story goes that they got thrown out of Paradise condemned to pay for their sin with the sweat of their foreheads. Da Man now had to work and be a provider. Eva stayed home barefoot and bearing children. This inequality and injustice prevailed throughout the centuries, until the roaring of fed up females sick of being called follows decided to do something about it. It takes two to Tango, you know, was their battle cry. Although we are still living in an imperfect world, when it comes to Tango, the roles of men and women have become less stereotypical, and progress towards equality continues at a steady pace.
For many, the Tango has become
a metaphor for higher levels of men/women relationships. Long gone are
the days of the early 1900's, when tough men killed each other to gain
the favors of mischievous women, who without missing a beat would turn
away from the bloody bodies laying outside the bar to focus their attention
on those inside eager to be the next ones to go out and fight.
Many marriages resulted from
the romances started on the dance floor because for as long as we can remember,
the main purpose of going to the milonga was for boys to meet girls and
vice versa. To be able to dance Tango well was a given, and the codes of
conduct at the milongas were strictly adhered to by those who wanted to
succeed. The entire body of activities, social interaction and behavior
at the milongas of Buenos Aires fall under what we would
like to call the tradition, myths and legends of Argentine Tango dancing.
For most Argentinos this is part of their idiosyncrasy and
most truly believe what George Dumesnil said on the subject:
country that no longer has legends, as the poet said, is condemned to freeze
to death. It is quite possible. But, people without myths would already
Lead Thyself Not Into TemptationCountless numbers of women have spent lots of time walking around a chair. That's how you learn your molinetes, they have been tempted to believe. The more they walked around the chairs, the more they kept pulling their partners off balance while they did their molinetes.
More and more women are realizing that men don't have four legs like chairs. They are also learning that there is no such thing as molinete steps. They are beginning to acknowledge that they are dancing with men, not leads. They are beginning to assume responsibility for their balance so they can tell when the men they are dancing with stop, but keep them walking around them. They realize that going around the man makes their hips move their legs in a predictable and repetitive sequence, forward, to the side and back.
Many women have spent lots
of time leaning against a wall while practicing their ochos.
Knees bent and pressed hard against each other. Ankles locked into each
other. Collect, collect, said the voices of temptation.
Many women have lined up
behind another woman, who repeated numerous times a sequence of steps asking
them to imitate her and memorize the steps. They have then proceeded to
demand that men lead them to recreate the steps. They have
been heard calling each step for the tentative leads who
went along with the game.
The ones who impose themselves on any man to fulfill a quote on their self-centered agendas, trading cheap easy dances for cheap, easy frills for perverts disguised as milongueros.