Ali Shanti, whose alcoholic ex-husband has apparently disappeared in Thailand, the sex tourism capital of the world, has decided what she wants for her son’s upcoming birthday:
My son’s 13th birthday is about 6 weeks out and I’m planning a rite of passage for him and could use some help.
I’d like him to have a vision quest type experience with the men in his life that would include a sweat lodge and a night of him camping out alone.
Greg Berry Marco Lam Jayson Gaddis Boysen Hodgson Craig Allan FilekJosh Zemel Nathan Otto Bu Nan Michael Brown Zachary Goldman Steve Dewart Lorene Wapotich Sujana Lorena Palazzo if any of you have ideas about where/how I could set this up relatively locally, I would greatly appreciate your input.
Anyone else too. Thanks!
The comments range from brief hosannas, from the likes of idiot woos Jena la Flamme – “cool!” – and Kc Baker – “Wow amazing” – to more disturbing contributions:
“I still don’t know what occurred”? Things get really weird when Craig Filek pops in.
Up in Harlem, pleasurable layabout & stereotypical gold digger Jena la Flamme reflected on time spent appropriating Latin rhythms and encountering women who actually work for a living:
~ How I was In the Arms of a 100 Men & a Few Women Last Weekend ~
Yes, it’s true. I was literally in the arms of a hundred men and a few women last weekend. No, I was not attending a mass orgy. I was at a Latin dance congress.
It’s a weekend of dance lessons, dance shows, and dance “socials” which are parties with live music or a DJ in which participants social dance with each other, meaning they dance not for competition, but simply for fun and the love of it.
Generally dancers change partners after every song, for what my teacher calls a “4-minute love affair.” In those 4 minutes there is the potential for a beautiful unspoken intimacy with another human being. Plus, it’s an incredible opportunity for what I call pleasurable movement.
You know when pleasurable movement is happening because it feels more like fun and a great way to connect with your animal body than “work” or “exercise.” It’s the opposite of “no pain, no gain.” It may feel intense or challenging, but the key is that you’re enjoying the process.
Dance or partner dance, in my case Latin dance, is only one of a multitude of expressions of pleasurable movement—it can take any form that turns you on—but it is one I highly recommend.
Now you may be thinking, “that sound great for you, Jena, but I can’t dance.”
Before you decided that’s true, I want to tell you about Anya.
As one class was ending and another was beginning, I noticed her glittery gold dance shoes that I had myself been eyeing in the congress’s temporary shoe shop.
I approached her. “I love your shoes!”
She smiled and said, “Let me tell you my story: I have never danced before. I was born in Russia, and my mother told me you will be short and fat and you can’t dance. You need to study. As a girl I begged my parents to let me go to dance, but they wouldn’t let me. Now I am 43 years old. I work 60 hours a week, but I’ve taken this Sunday to come to class and learn to dance. I am being born anew.”
I hugged her in celebration of her rebirth. I pointed to the t-shirt I was wearing with an image of a lion on it.
“This is a symbol of your body, your animal, your lioness. May she be free,” I said to her.
“Oh my God! I am a lioness! How did you know I was a Leo?”
I giggled. “I have a strong intuition,” I said, which is true, but really it was just a coincidence. I felt so proud of her and deeply touched by her story and her conviction to dance, no matter what.
Later I danced with a female lead, Heidi Breslow, who told me her story:
“Dance changed me. I’m not a software engineer but I used to be in the military and I didn’t know how to communicate with civilians. Through dancing I was able to connect without even needing to talk. Now dancing is my social life. I barely drink. I’ll sip on a cocktail but I don’t like to get drunk. I’ve also learned to lead the dance so that I can connect with women too.”
All weekend the men and women I met shared their stories of discovering partner dance and allowing its magic to infiltrate their life.
“It’s not about perfect moves,” one of the teachers told me. “The most important thing is to smile and express your enjoyment through your face. That’s the key to great social dancing.”
I couldn’t agree more and I think that’s what makes me a dynamic dancer. I’m not hard on myself when I inevitably step on someone’s foot or worse, whack them in the face with my arm during a turn. (Yes, that happened more than once.) And though I admire dancers who are more advanced than me, I don’t enter into the miserable habit of comparisons.
The best compliment I received all weekend was, “You’ve got the hottest personality on the dance floor.” The compliment was not about my outfit, my physique or my technical skills, but was about my willingness to let loose, feel joy and to connect with a fellow human being in a non-judgmental, spirited way. I danced with men who were a foot shorter, a foot taller and a foot wider than me, and I enjoyed every one.
After 3 days of classes in which you frequently switch partners every few minutes, plus 3 nights of dance parties, I’m sure I easily danced with 100 people, each a unique experience.
Latin dance is a beautiful expression of sensuality. The particular focus of this congress was a dance is called Bachata. Also known as the tango of the Caribbean, it is sensuous, but above all playful and joyous.
Here’s a video of me dancing with a wonderful dance partner I met on the beach. This dance was 100% improvised, with me following this lead and him responding to my body’s capability and flow. Look how happy I look! I was having a LOT of fun in that moment, going beyond the moves I technically knew, guided by the improvisation.
I share this to open your eyes to the possibility of partner dancing for YOU! There are lots of dance forms taught all over the world, plus many instructional DVDs you can learn from at home. As the ambassador for your female animal I want to inspire and support you to take the risk to try something new and different.
Partner dance may or may not be for you, but the spirit of moving in a way that is exciting and personally rewarding is for all of us. Cultures around the world celebrate the body and no matter your shape or size, you can too, with pleasurable movement.
Now I’d like to hear from you. What does this post inspires for you and your female animal? If there was no shame and nothing to prove, how would you like to further engage in pleasurable movement. Let me know in the comments or ask me any questions you may have about Latin dance.
P.S. If you are in NYC and want private or group lessons, I highly recommend my teacher Juan Calderon. He has changed my life and continues to. My female animal body has never been so happy.
I just kant. Last and possibly least, Myka Dunkle McLaughlin, Duran Duran’s favorite teen model and Julia Allison’s bestie until the arrival of Jess “Caterwauler” Johnson, reemerged on FB after going dark when we revealed her past. Myka penned several wackaloon entries about her “business,” in which she sounds suspiciously like Ali Shanti. Even nuttier are the entries about writing a book, complete with accompanying videos of Myka in her bedroom.
Day 5 of writing. Completed Introduction Chapter – 30 pages this week. Thank you everyone for your witnessing of my post yesterday. Big. Energy. Moving. On. Thru. Hallelujah. In honor of my little girl from all those years ago (and the little ones in all of us), I made a Tribute to our Young Ones video.
Day 6. Writing Goal – develop Outline for Book Proposal; revenue model for publisher’s opportunity with WINC; talk to AMAZING author of Rich Bitch,Nicole Lapin (p.s. she’s anything but a bitch, more like gorgeously loving and uber generous). CHECK! As for the videos I’ve been posting, I must say, I am HOOKED. For months, I’ve been getting visions of making music videos. I was trained as a classical ballerina and modern dancer growing up, and suddenly, I want to reignite my relationship to this huge part of my past. And if there is anything clear to me about this time on Earth, it is that the time is NOW. Whatever you want, its TIME. And not because its all perfect. Because WE are READY. Seriously, my music video fantasies have costumes and lights and they’re filmed in my HoloWINC events space with ample room. But perfection is old paradigm, if you ask me. So (with a big lump in my throat and lots of hibbie jibbies about what you’ll think of me), I’m making my music video fantasy real right NOW without any of the bells and whistles, live from my home office. What are you personally READY for manifesting, throat lumps and all?
I’m wanted back on planet earth now.
Update: Donkey’s been changing FB profile and cover fauxtos. She’s also planning yet another vacation and needs your help!
I trust that you brilliant jetsetters know more than any travel magazine …What do you suggest if I’m looking to get out of the SF winter ASAP (like, next week), criteria being:
2) stress relieving
4) nature filled & stunning – near water (NO CITIES and the less people the better!)
6) inexpensive ($750-$1500 a week)
7) 6 hours or less from SF – so no Bali or Maldives, but probably Hawaii
8) spiritually activated (you can interpret that however you like)
9) romantic (again, up to your interpretation)
10) healthy food
Super specific suggestions most welcome! Like, if you have a particular AirBnB or eco-yoga-resort or … whatever. wink emoticon Thank you Thank you Thank you!!!
Bottom Fan in the ‘Stan: Zuki C’ottak Konsllet, Jr.!