Thursday, January 29, 2009

Swinging is as swinging does

Last evening Linda and I practiced the new West Coast Swing moves we learned at our Monday night lesson up at the Ballroom on High. Unlike the heedless young kids who make up much of the class we're serious students. And we've learned in the past that if we don't practice the new dance moves faithfully they'll go in one foot and out the other, and we'll end the five lesson course as clumsy and wrong footed as when we started.

But I'm not here to write about West Coast Swing today. I'm here to write about the South East Coast Swing, or more precisely South East Coast Swingers. All because of a salacious web article that caught the attention of both Linda and my dear sister Marianne on Monday. I missed the article because I was diligently stoking the wood stove between sessions of reading substantive stuff about world affairs and such. The bright sun coming in both direct and by reflection off the snow has the house heated to something like seventy six degrees today; but on Monday it took pretty regular feeding of the stove to keep it in the high sixties.

I would be completely innocent of the latest report of, uh, concupiscence among the geezers down in The Villages if Linda hadn't emailed the article below to me on Monday afternoon. And I probably wouldn't be writing about it if Marianne hadn't called to alert me to it on Monday evening.

Where do the two of them find time for such fluff?

I'm reminded of the time Uncle Mill was visiting Pop and Mom in the 1980's. Me, Sam and Jas successively showed up on a weekday for coffee, and breakfast, and then conversation which stretched to the point at which it made no sense to go elsewhere for lunch, what with Mom right there to make potatoes and eggs. I can never get potatoes and eggs to come exactly the same as Mom could. Sometimes the simplest recipes are the hardest.

Anyway, there was a lot of catching up to do that day in the 1980's. I had met Uncle Mill one time in the early 1970's when I stopped and stayed a night at his house on the way out to Chicago; but I don't believe Sam and Jas had ever met him before at that point. He was a slightly beefier version of Pop. Such a good version of Pop that there is a picture of him driving Pop's golf cart that I wrongly identified as a picture of Pop for a long time until Mom set me straight.

"Doesn't anybody work around here?" Uncle Mill finally asked. I won't get into the fact that this was a surprising question from a fellow who left Norristown rather suddenly in the late 1940's and rode the rails for a couple of years before he quietly settled in Ohio to work in the steel mills. All through the fifties and sixties he pretty much laid low, occasionally contacting only Pop to stay in touch; and he never visited until that time in the early 1980's.

Have I ever mentioned that we folks of my generation have a first cousin who grew up in Bridgeport? She would be a second cousin to you younger folks. I forget her name just now, but there are a couple of electronic pictures of her that I believe are correctly labelled. Her existence isn't the only interesting factoid to be discovered in the electronic picture labels by someone who is alert to nuance.

Ah, the naivete' of the young, always believing that everything is new and different. I believe it was Shakespeare who first wrote that "there is nothing new under the sun;" but I may have that wrong. Shakespeare may have been quoting some fellow who composed the Old Testament in 800 or so BC. I'm too lazy to google the phrase. Shakespeare also wrote, this time I'm sure, "lechery, lechery; all wars and lechery, nothing else holds fashion."

And while I'm on the subject of dating conventions and innocence of history, I noticed the other day that Spike Lee mentioned the idea of labelling the years before 2009 as "BO" and the years after 2009 as "AO," or something like that. Talk about clueless chutzpah! Someday I'm going to reacquaint myself with the number of centuries that elapsed after certain events in Jerusalem before the world decided to begin labelling years by the convention"BC" and "AD." "Before Christ" and "Anno Domini," for you folks educated after politically correct idiots began referring to "BCE" - before the Common Era - and "CE" - the Common Era.

I suspect I've completely messed up the punctuation of that last sentence, at least by conventional punctuation rules which bored me almost as much as the diagramming of sentences back in grade school back when they still taught punctuation and the diagramming of sentences; but I'm the author here so I'll use any damn punctuation marks I please.

Anyway, back to the web article that both Linda and Marianne curiously noticed. "Why are you calling me about that?" I asked Marianne, "I'm only an occasional visitor to The Villages. It's your other brothers who bought houses down there."

She said she expected me to write about it. So here goes.

I think the ten to one ratio mentioned in the article is an exaggeration; although I might possibly believe that a given hot spot on a given night might have that ratio. I doubt that the ratio in The Villages as a whole is more than two to one. I'm also considering the reliability of the writer. Sixty plus year old hips may still move somewhat creakily; but they very rarely "gyrate." And, just what does the term "hot spot" means in a community where they turn the streetlights off at 9:00 PM and the loudest noise to be heard by ten is the sound of snoring? I would think that the most frequented hot spots in such a community would be the heating pads in the arthritis pain clinic.

Talk about a mixed up world. I'm just realizing that "PM" stands for "Post Meridiem" and "AM" stands for "Ante Meridiem." These are said to be latin phrases, although I question that "Post" in there. "AD" stands for "Anno Domini" which is certainly a latin phrase. But "BC" stands for "Before Christ" which is definitely an English phrase. So why is the english phrase mixed up with the latin phrases in those usages? Another excellent timewaster for another day.

But back to the article about The Villages. I've noticed during my visits to down there with Sam and Jas that there is a somewhat substantial pool of widows; although I don't think that's why the mailing address is Lady Lake. Who is the lady? Or is it a reference to a lake of ladies?

Finally, I'm very skeptical about most of the folks I've met down there doing anything much more strenuous than sitting on the bench seat of a golf cart. If very many of them are attempting the kind of golf cart hanky panky mentioned in this article I would hate to see the length of the waiting line at the back pain clinic.

Here's the article. If you have questions about it I suggest you address them to Sam and Jas. For myself I have to get going to the monthly meeting of the technical recruiters association to commiserate with the other folks who are out of work in this first year of the age of Obama. Is this the year One or is it the year Zero? I'll need to check out that Spike Lee reference.,2933,482785,00.html


Anonymous said...

With 40,000 residences and 70,000 occupants, I would have to agree with you that the ratio is probably a lot less than 10 to 1.

So, you hate fluff??? Well, here's some real fluff that Linda and Marianne might enjoy. :)


Sully said...

Talk about having too much time on your hands! I especially liked the comments. Clearly these kittens have a following.

Anonymous said...

Well, at least now you know how to increase traffic to your site...Sully Cam!

On a more serious note. I am sorry to hear that you're among the unemployed. :( I hope something opens up for you soon.


Sully said...

Thanks for the thought, but I've been unemployed before so it's not like a shock or anything.

The market for recruiters is, as you can imagine, pretty strongly leveraged to the state of the general economy. A fortuitous alignment of the stars caused me to be able to work right through the 2001/2002 period so I've had a longer steady run than I had any right to expect since the last time I was out for any significant length of time (1989/1990).

Also, I'm fortunate to enjoy my work when I'm doing it; but it's not like I enjoy it more than other things that I can do when I'm not working.