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Get down & get funky!

Today is the 34th anniversary of Studio 54 – the iconic disco that represented all that was evil, fun and famous in society in 1977. A friend reminded me of this event (we were both in NYC last week and he did a pilgrimage to the site. I did a pilgrimage to Murray’s Cheese Shop!). So, if you’re about the “Mirror Image age” (over 50), and didn’t live under a rock — you did your share of disco dancing!

Do the hustle! (Click on the link, go to iTunes or YouTube right now and put some funky music on! Staying Alive is fine. Fly, Robin, Fly. I Will Survive…) What great music we had! Ok, it wasn’t that great, but it was really good to dance to. The Bus Stop, the Get Down and all the other silly line dances were easy enough for most to follow along. And you didn’t have to worry about someone asking you to dance. Great exercise, too. And you worked up a thirst and could keep going all night.

My favorite memory was on a ski trip to Powderhorn in Michigan. We went out to the only bar/lodge/disco walkable (and there were 2 busloads of us, so we could only walk). This was the cafeteria during the day where families of skiers clomped through in wet ski boots and gloves and hats and sat down at long picnic tables with bad chili – that was magically transformed when they moved out the tables and turned on the disco ball in the evening.

My ski club group often took over the bar, making friends with skiers from other areas, and leading the dj in requests for disco songs and setting up the evening’s “dance routine.” We looked great – flared pants, flower print flowy tops, probably platform shoes or at least cool shoes to dance in. After MANY cocktails, we were out on the floor in a spirited Bus Stop (do a bunch of arm movements and easy steps, turn to the right, repeat….) I was at the end of the line as a leader and putting all my enthusiasm into the dance. Turn right, turn right, turn right, turn right… when I realized I was the only person on the dance floor. My friends had quietly conspired to get the entire bar – probably 70 people – to vacate the floor when I turned to face the wall, On the next “turn right” I realized there was no one in front of me, and then no one next to or behind me. And I kept on dancing. Like there was nothing odd. Though I guess I had quite a surprised look on my face. Plus I always thought I was a better dancer than I really was. So the Powderhorn Lodge had an impromptu show that night. At least I hadn’t lost my clothes or anything.

Disco was fun. We were in our twenties and social life was so important. We worked hard during the day and let off a bundle of steam at night. Disco was our exercise routine, our friends, our “sense of place”, our fashion guide (no John Travolta white suits, fortunately) our family.

So today, crank up the CD or iTunes and dance to celebrate all the fun times of the 70s. Bet the Hustle comes right back to you!

What was your favorite disco song? And memory? Please share!

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