Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Our Version of a Sweet Moment

So, it was a housework-y night Monday night. I came straight home in a hailstorm that felt like Seattle wasn't really trying (I was right. The hail had stopped by the time I had locked the door behind me, peed*, divested myself of outer garment and wet umbrella, hugged Ramon hello and stepped to the window to look out) and straight away went to sort the laundry. Monday's a big night for laundry, somehow, in this apartment building, and it's a race to the downstairs room with great acoustics and 8 machines. I also made dinner, a real one, and did some dishes, which were still legion from Friday night's dinner party. We are a relaxed sort of people.

Anyway, I spent most of my evening in the kitchen pottering around. And it was good - wine makes pottering both challenging and a complete delight. Ramon was camped out in front of the Mac making sweet Gmail love to Harley and fiddling with mixes on Pandora. His first station was seeded by Steve Reich and I was subjected to a great deal of Phillip Glass as a result. Which was OK, since I amused myself at the sink by having a daydream about him. Glass, I mean: I'm in a stuffy concert hall during one of his works, and when one of his crashing, pulsing symphonic climaxes comes on, standing up with my friends and screaming like it's crazy-ass-guitar-solo time at a Queen concert. And an unfortunate old codger, when he asks an usher to quieten us, gets told in respectful tones that it's the composer's wish that rock-concert-type cheering during his symphonies is to be considered part of the composition and sanctioned at all costs. If he hasn't thought of that already, by the way, don't you think he should? He's build-to-a-climax boy. There should be cheering.

So Ramon got tired of the Reich/Glass-fest and seeded a new station with Curtis Mayfield, with whom I'm sadly unfamiliar. All of a sudden our home and extremely mellow brains were filled with the strains of psychedelic-funk-soul what-have-you (I'll write a blog sometime about how athletically I suck at classifying music. Ramon can co-write it and spend 3 paragraphs on how I still can't tell the diff between rap and hip-hop, however much I listen to both. It'll be GREAT.) and I can't remember when I've felt better.

Then Cruisin' by Smokey Robinson came on. Let me just say that this will NEVER be our song. Immediate disqualification due to the song's involvement with the movie Duets. Just like I'd never karaoke Bette Davis Eyes. Watching Gwyneth sway and clap her hands above her head and then, AND THEN, watching some blonde do THE SAME RENDITION at the Red Lion Inn Karaoke Night (back when we lived in Eugene, OR) several weeks later was quite enough for me, thank you. Still and all - Cruisin' is a romantic and very cool-sounding song. So I wiped dishwater off my hands, strode into the living room and announced that we HAD to dance to the song - there was some kind of law and the whole thing was out of my hands. I had even waited until the second chorus, because I knew by then that Ramon had had one verse and chorus to really get to FEELING it, you know? And he consented. Tore himself away from Harley's loving embrace and enfolded me instead.

Our slow-dancing history got off to a not-great start, by the way. Our first slow dance was at our wedding reception. I had, in a fit of complete assery, chosen "Night and Day" by Bette Midler. Ramon had never heard it, it meant nothing to either of us, but I HAD to choose a 'first song' and it was about how dissimilar the lovers are, so I thought it would be great. Well, I actually don't know what I was thinking. Oh, heaven and earth. Turn back time for me, for I never tried dancing to the effing song before putting it on the mix CD. It is impossible. Let me break it down for you: I collared Ramon and dragged him to the dance floor (which was and remained nearly deserted for the duration of the reception), all but put his hands on my body (he is a reluctant dancer) and began steering him around the floor. If you ever hear that song - and it's not setting foot on my blog, so just you put that from your mind - you'll understand our struggle. It's got a completely un-danceable beat. Too slow even for slow-dancing. We tried double-time. Too fast and jouncy. We tried dancing to the actual beat. Too slow. TOO SLOW! I was leading (out of huffy necessity, so I thought, since my new husband was not putting out much of an effort), he was also trying to lead, but we'd been raised to believe that dancing was a sin, so the whole thing devolved into us completely out of sync and guiltily trotting around the floor grieving The Lord and wishing fervently that we hadn't banned alcohol at our wedding. Yes, ours was a dry wedding. An ill-omened marriage if I ever saw one. But our family thinks even less of drinking than dancing, so...fortunately, when one serves no alcohol at the reception (not that many of the guests would have imbibed) it only lasts maybe 1 1/2 hours. Then you can get to the important part: for us, scooting to Burger King, settling into our hotel room by the airport, sipping the sparkling apple cider (our wedding night was also free of any inhibition-reducing substances. But then, we were young) Mom provided for us in a lovely basket, and trying to make a whirlpool in our little private swimming pool by racing around the perimeter. Naked, mais oui.

Needless to say. We have always sucked at dancing, and doing it slowly and together especially. However, over the years Ramon has relaxed a bit (mostly due to many more parties and the presence of drinks and people who drink at them) and found his goofy side on the dance floor. Which has increased his confidence and sense of style. He no longer resembles Eugene Levy's character in American Pie when dancing. I have also relaxed, which generally looks like letting Ramon do his thing without any sort of assistance and never making him witness me doing anything TOO embarrassing. And in this and many ways, I've learned to trust him.

So when we came together, leaning, as we have so many times before, on each other both for love's sake and for increased balance (did I mention that we were mellow?), I finally figured out what it meant to follow him. He drifted around our little space, turning this way and that, holding me like the girl I was, and I loosened way the hell up and...followed. If I tried to anticipate where he'd go I'd screw up. If I tried to stick to doing the two-step in place and in rhythm, likewise. But when I leaned more surely on him and turned my brain off and shut my mouth and let myself drift with him, following was effortless. Not perfect. But so fucking good.

A life lesson? Nah. We suck at those too.

* In that order. I pee first when I arrive from anywhere, no matter the condition of my personal hydration levels or how soon ago I went #1. I get home and pee, or there's big trouble of the pulling-an-inner-thigh-muscle-and/or-wetting-myself variety.


Blogger Harley Ferris said...

Great story. And I guess that explains the emailus interruptus...

4/04/2008 2:03 PM  
Blogger Cerise said...

[laughing] I do apologize. I hope you both picked up where you left off.

4/04/2008 2:56 PM  
Blogger ~beth ♥ said...

I think the two of you are perfectly fitted for one another and I've never met Ramon.

Oh ... and Bette Midler??? Turn back the time indeed!

4/08/2008 12:04 PM  
Blogger Cerise said...

Well, see, Beth, you're smart like that. And he'd like you.

I know, oh god oh god. I love ya Bette, but...I briefly considered 'forgetting' the song for this blog. For the purposes of personal dignity.

4/08/2008 12:13 PM  
Anonymous june said...

So, you're having a crummy day/week/month/generation and for no apparent reason you click on "Cerise" on the blog you usually read/write on but are currently sorta avoiding and you end up here and you read this: "I was leading (out of huffy necessity, so I thought, since my new husband was not putting out much of an effort), he was also trying to lead, but we'd been raised to believe that dancing was a sin, so the whole thing devolved into us completely out of sync and guiltily trotting around the floor grieving The Lord and wishing fervently that we hadn't banned alcohol at our wedding." and your crumminess is made slightly less crummy by Cerise and her great writing and you wish you could therefore give her a hug and a chocolate and say a sincere "thank you" before you get on with your crummy life.


10/02/2008 8:49 AM  

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