Chat with Deb—Dancing With My Wife

You light up my life!

Illustration by Jack Herlocker using DALL-E (“man and woman dancing together romantically artistic style”)

Dennett’s partner in crime (and life), Captain Argentina, likes to dance. Dennett has documented this (with photos!) so I have no reason to doubt it. Plus it fits with the image of Ben that I have in my mind: an artistic soul, delighted by music, and happy to move his body as his spirit gets caught up in the melodies and rhythms.

Dennett, however, does not dance¹. Nor do I², nor does Deb. Usually.

My previous wife never danced that I remember. Maybe these days? I asked her current spouse.

CAROL: Linda doesn’t dance. Even when I dance all around.

LINDA: She’s right. I don’t dance. When I try, I’m like an epileptic spider on a hot plate. Not pretty.

And Deb & I were at their wedding, and nope, no dancing that we recalled. Although there was so much else going on, we never noticed.

But many years ago, when we were still just dating, I mentioned that one of my regrets about my first marriage was never getting to dance with my wife³. Just a “hold on tight and kinda move to the slow music” kind of dance. So the next time I was over at Deb’s place, she had me stand in the middle of her living room while she put on a record.

DEB: Here, put your arms around me. Because you never got to with Linda.

And we danced to “You Light Up My Life.”

¹Ben likes the milonga — like a tango but faster.
DENNETT: Please note that I do not dance like this with him. I am a product of the 60s; we danced without touching and without the female following the male’s lead. I’m way too liberated for that!

²I do “dance exercise,” which is to REAL dance as canned spaghetti is to pasta made fresh in an Italian ristorante. (Usually more like MRE spaghetti, the way I do it.) I got into using dance as an aerobic exercise when our church group was packing food boxes in the same area that a Zumba class was exercising, and it looked, um, energetic. I found streaming Zumba videos on Prime Video, then on Apple Exercise+. I found I enjoy the Latin-style dances: bachata, salsa, merengue, reggaeton (at least the way Coach Jhon does them on Exercise+). My heart rate gets a workout, I’ve learned not to bump into the furniture, and after 30 minutes I’m not sweating as badly as when I’ve gone through a HIIT (High-Impact Interval Training) session (also available on Exercise+). Things I’ve learned:
• I use more calories when I know a routine than when I’m learning it. Not sure why.
• I do better when I know the music, I guess because I can anticipate what’s coming next more accurately.
• If I don’t know the music, I usually do much better with Latin music, because… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
• People who can dance well to hip-hop are WAY out of my league.

³Linda and I got married by a justice of the peace on Guam, where Linda was stationed, as I was on my way to my new duty station in Newport, RI. Our “reception” was Happy Hour at the base Officers Club. There might have been music, but mostly I remember my new bride explaining, “I just got married! No, really, I am not shitting you, see, ring and everything! To this guy! Oh, this is Jack, did I not mention him yet?”

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Jack Herlocker

Jack Herlocker

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Husband & retiree. Developer, tech writer, & IT geek. I fill what’s empty, empty what’s full, and scratch where it itches. Occasionally do weird & goofy things.