Monday, February 26, 2018

Keep Trying

It comes regularly that I make an offer like asking for contributing dance information for our blogs. So I recognize "yes." which of course is terrific and I am happy as a baby bird. And I must recognize "No," as a definite communication that has been made and I can accept it. And with "maybe," not so good but there is always hope. And I thank everyone for that. Ah, but to be ignored is a horse of a different color and the silence may be deafening.

"The truest expression of a people is in its dance and in its music. Bodies never lie."

Specially for someone that went through the Big  Depression as a young kid in the U.S. shining shoes. "Shine, mister?" I will never forget that look. You wanna be ignored? Once I have been ignored I then feel that I must never, ever bother them again.  With some contacts in social dancing I am able to leave the door open and it will still have the sign that says "Welcome." With the rest I accept that they all have the right to ignore me, No hu hu. But I certainly have the right to ignore them.

"Tiny Bubbles" by Don Ho

I do not have to talk stink about anyone, they are simply no longer in my kuleana. Meanwhile, I must be on my way, with six blogs I am much too busy. I have an awful lot of work to do. In my blogs I have few parameters. No porn, no wild politics, all the usual goop that other blogs have. The contributors of information can write whatever they damn well please. I do wish to minimze the ones that have continued to lie about me and have done me great wrong. I just hope they will not honor their commitments by compromising my principles.

Pub's Note: This blog is going to be posted on Sundays only. May be phasing out.
Slowly but we must make it the way the readers wish to make it.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Our Evolving Dance Culture

By Jason Miyashita, Waipio

As dancers, we are musically way ahead of the academics. Long before the academics knew enough to either condemn or condone Blues or Jazz, musicians had developed a culture around parties, speakeasies, juke joints and da kine. A culture that had its own codes of behavior and slang. Dancers, like musicians, have always rebelled against the intellectualized “norm” - those folks who sifted through their culture and categorized, labeled and interpreted their culture to the rest of the world.

"Social dancers believe that in moving to music, its inmost substance
cannot be reasoned, only experienced.”

How do you define music or a dance when it has no pedigree like Latin music in Hawaii? This question can be answered in a few ways and the first thing that is important to understand is that definitions change over time as musicians or dancers – and the general public – grow used to “what is” – and get used to the process of evolution towards “what will be.” And for a good example, we have Latin music. We can all agree that Latin music exists but we must remember that there was a time when it didn’t exist as it does now in Hawaii.

"Morning Dew" by Melveen Leed

Obviously we can observe that Latin music on Oahu has evolved over time. After the war there was only Puerto Rican music and that was just accepted as music for the Puerto Ricans. And there were other flashes in the pan but it not until HBDA was formed that they categorized Rumba, Cha Cha Cha, Samba and Tango for the Hawaii Islands  Take a good look around, we have come a long ways, Baby. And West Oahu is picking up on this action.

“No persons are more frequently wrong, than those
who will not admit they are wrong.”

Sunday, February 18, 2018

The Disc Jockey

There have been many around this island bent on entertaining the guests. They have good intentions, they are good people and they intend to do good not bad for the dancers. But of course, too much entertainment in a dance program can be bad. And many dance venues (such as the famous Palladium in New York city) became aware only after it was too late. Why? Because social dancers don't come to see the show, they come to dance! We could all agree that we are a simple folk!

“Social dancers, dance with hopes and sing along with all the possibilities.”

DJ? One of the most important elements in our dance scene. "WOW that was the most fun I've had all week." If that's what you want to hear, then finding and keeping the best DJ is the most important job in any dance group. This is because the DJ has one of the biggest roles in creating the social dancer's perfect evening. You need to place a lot of trust and confidence in this person. The social dancers want to take over the dance floor and dance the night away. They want to lose themselves in music and feel like they are on top of the world because this is their night.

"Some Enchanted Evening" by Perry Como

Our dancers want to take this time to feel every beat, dance to every song, smile with everyone, and have somebody there to play the music that we love. Someone who can read us and the crowd and make us jump, shout, slow down, come closer, and show off. We want somebody who wants to make our night awesome and is willing to stay until the party is over, not end the party themselves. We are so fortunate that we have some of the very best on Oahu.

 "New Year's Day now is the accepted time to make our regular annual good year
resolutions. This month we can begin paving hell with them as usual."

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Designing Our Blogs

By Tim Brown, Kahalui, Maui

Great designers don’t just do design, they live design. Like them, some of us can learn how to practice design thinking principles both at work and at home and blogging. As you start designing your life in 2018, there are a few ways to begin:

1. Be optimistic, collaborative, and generative. There’s something wonderfully gratifying about creating something new, whether it’s an award-winning design or a home-cooked meal. Don't hurry, enjoy the process.

“Social dancers live their truth - express their love - share their enthusiasm.
They take action towards their dreams - walk their talk -
and dance and sing to their music."

2. Think of life as a prototype. Conduct experiments, make discoveries, change as needed. Any process can be re-examined and tweaked. Look for opportunities to turn a process into a project with a tangible outcome.

3. Don't ask "what?" ask "why?" Instead of accepting a given constraint, ask whether this is the right problem to be solving. There are an awful lot of dancers with different opinions. It may be a good thing if you agree with many.

4. Demand divergent options. Don’t settle for the first good idea that comes to mind or seize on the first promising solution presented to you. Explore divergent options—and then set a deadline so you know when to move on. Just one of those ideas may hit your jackpot and "Voila!"

5. Once a day, deeply observe the ordinary. Make it a rule that at least once a day you will stop and take a second look at some ordinary situation that you would normally look at only once (or not at all). Get out in the world and be inspired by people.

Happy designing! *

"Social dancers believe that the truth is gonna set you free.
But first it is goin' to piss you off."

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Moving Right Along

In the last ten years the big clubs on Oahu have been increasing their show business outlook which is nice. At the same time they are becoming socially aware when creating group dances that the easiest is with their American Style of Dance. They have been reflecting and discussing their dances, creating dances that were also increasing student interest. HBDA has done very well in that department. They have developed problem-solving abilities and when a dance is created a problem may be solved. Terrific.

“Social dancers don't cry because it's over, they smile because it happened.”

And their imagination has been liberated - Students have had to visualize how parts of a dance will look ahead of time. In these last few decades we have increased the amount of people that have become spectators. Wahiawa Ballroom Dance Club has it pretty clear. It used to be about, 10% competition dancers and 90% social dancers. But now it may be closer to 10% competition dancers, 20% viewers (a new division) and social dancers are down to 70%. The viewers are becoming more evident at the big Extravadanzas at the Hotels.

"Fly Me To The Moon" by Jimmy Borges

After the show, they leave, so it becomes confirmed that they are neither in the competition nor social dance class. They had their dinner and they saw the show, nice. We do have Creativity and when students help to create dances they learn about the creative process & become more confident with this process. There is self-esteem & satisfaction. Students gain feelings of accomplishment when they help to create a dance. We may be getting back on track and who knows, West Oahu may be leading the way in all this.

"The right to think is the beginning of freedom, and ... and speech is
the beginning of thought ... then writing in a blog is ...?"

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Living and Dancing in West Oahu

West Oahu is looking better all the time. The Rail Disaster has brought about the recognition of the West as independent entities where the residents could try to live, work and play in their own kuleanas. The Central Valley doing the best but there are big bucks trying to stop the construction of Business Parks. Wahiawa Ballroom Dance Club has been the lone social club for the longest time. They are on the rise again and will have something to say about Social Dancing on Oahu.

“Social dancers believe that there may be no limit to what a person
can do that has been inspired by dancing to good music.”

They have dancers coming most easily from Waipahu, Waikele,Waipio, Mililani, Whitmore Village and even Haleiwa. With the good blogging they are providing, they will be getting some from Kapolei and Pearl City. They have a very good set up. Dots In Wahiawa is doing just fine and and Just Tacos is doing good with Salsa in Mililani. Both of them in restaurant business and dancing. Just one real nice Businss Park and the Central Valley will really bloom. Getting six to nine thousand people off the freeways to town and not contributing to the bad traffic situation coming soon.

"Maui Waltz" by Loyal Garner

The North Shore is second best and a natural. Cholos Home Style Mexican and The Turtle Bay Hilton leading the way with Son Caribe and Salsa dancing. But again, they have stopped two attempts in the last ten years for anyone to build a Business Park in the vicinity. Something about agriculture land which have never been used for agriculture in the last ten thousand years. Then there are the birds and the bees. And this never stop them from building multi-million dollar homes in other parts of the Island. And there is plenty room for another affordable residential tract. Talk about living in Paradise!

"To do more for the world than the world does for you - that is success"

Friday, February 2, 2018

Line Dancing in West Oahu

Looking more interesting from the viewpoint of the Social Dancer. But we are not  in any definite  place yet. The blogs seem to be settling down with the Social dancing information available. So a nice group we must try to help is the Line Dancers. They were first brought into the Dancing in the Dark publication by Frank Sierra and I picked up from there. When I lived in town I would make regular contact with Parents Without Partners dancing at Ward Center stage on Tuesday evening. I don't know anything about them now.

"In our dance world, there are two kinds of people, those who do the work, and those who take the credit. Try to be in the first group; there is less competition there."

For some reason we have a difficult time getting information from separate entities of Line Dancing. Occasionally they give but not much, some seem to be semi private. So we just have to take it easy, if they don't like it, the contact will come to a screeching halt. Like the rest of the dance scene, the photos are very important sharing with our fellow dancers. Fortunately our best bet at present are the line dancers at the Wahiawa Ballroom Dance Club. Plenty of good men dancers too. They are going to lead the way.

A review of the blogs reveals that all the blogs are falling behind predictions, (the Law of Diminishing Returns.) A lot of it is my fault, I am limited physically and I will have to get to work this coming year.  The big ones in town are closer to predictions than small ones in the West. The hits should go up when I beat the bushes a little more. More comments are invited. Information contributors emailing their pearls of wisdom are very good and of course the Big Prize is the Guest Blogger.

"The social dancers in West Oahu say there may not be much to see in a small town,
but what you hear makes up for it."