Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Spy for an Evening

Last night I felt a little like Arnold Schwarzenegger. Not in the sense that I've been approached about running for governor of California or suddenly developed a Mr. Universe physique. Being a medical student has headaches enough -- I think I'll pass on politics -- and believe me, I'm light years from looking like Adonis. No, it was Schwarzenegger as Harry Tasker in the film, True Lies, a mild-mannered computer salesman to his wife and daughter, and a spy to the rest of the world. It's the film in which Jamie Lee Curtis utters the line probably every man wishes his wife would at some point in their marriage, i.e. "I married Rambo."

Now, the similarity I felt didn't result from a backstreet run-in with terrorists or a secretive midnight flight to Geneva. It was more mundane than that; it came about when my dance instructor announced we'd be learning the Tango. If you've seen True Lies, you probably have a mental image of Schwarzenegger casually taking the time to dance a Tango with the gorgeous Tia Carrere while his buddies, monitoring his activity by radio, are going nuts because any second he could be discovered by the bad guys.

It made the evening fun, anyway, imaging myself learning skills that might come in handy if I'm ever called upon to serve my country under cover. I know, fat chance -- both of serving under cover and having Tia Carrere as a partner. But the Tango is very romantic and even going through the motions of learning it creates an air of sophistication that made me feel as though I should have been dressed in a tuxedo instead of jeans and sport shirt.

We only practiced the essential steps last night, which means we left out the part where the man appears to drag his partner across the floor. We did, however, include a sensuous move allowing the woman to lean tantalizingly close and then back away, but only so far as your arms will allow. You don't have to be Schwarzenegger, nor does your partner have to be a luscious female secret agent, to appreciate that. I suppose it helps, but there's always fantasy and on the dance floor, imagination can be as good as the real thing.

Even if it only turns you into a spy for an evening.

(Creative Commons image of the Tango by formfactor via Flickr)

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