Thursday, December 29, 2005


“Dis (diss?)” (slang): Verb—to show disrespect for; noun—disrespect.

Exhibit A: Someone yanks a microphone out of a singer’s hand in the middle of a song—watch Etan G, The Jewish Rapper, get "kicked off the Chabad Telethon!"

Exhibit B: Congregant has choreographed three Jewish line dances (two to Yishayah/Isaiah, one to the prayer Modeh Ani/I thank You) and is presenting their official public debut at the synagogue Chanukah party when, halfway through the second dance, she’s interrupted by the announcement, “Tables 1, 2, 3, and 4 can now go up to the buffet table.” According to the “counter” on Mark's radio blog, Modeh Ani (just keep a-scrollin’ down—it’s in there somewhere) is only 2 minutes and 17 seconds long. Mr. Impatient couldn’t have waited literally another minute? Sigh—not when the congregants are beginning to kvetch out loud, “Let’s eat, already!” There are occasional drawbacks to having a retired kosher caterer as president of the shul. Sorry, Mark, but, truth to tell, I think that my dances to your Ki V'Simchah (also somewhere on the radio blog, Modeh Ani, and Aniyah (acoustic guitar version) probably looked better in rehearsal.

Exhibit C: An organization decides to move an entire division to another location—and doesn’t bother informing the vice president of that decision until it’s a done deal. I don't even work for that division, and even I’m livid! Do you suppose this has anything to do with the fact that the vice president in question is the only female vice president in the entire Orthodox Jewish not-for-profit organization for which I work—and one who wears pants almost every day, to boot—and that the literal men in charge resent the fact that she's done such a marvelous job of running programs that bring funding into the organization? Or are the powers-that-be "equal opportunity offenders" who'd pull the same inconsiderate and insulting stunt on anyone?


Blogger PsychoToddler said...

Don't feel bad, Shira. They make those kinds of announcements while I am playing those songs too. And they are usually not shy about coming up to me, pushing me out of the way, and taking my microphone.
And then when they put it back in the stand, it's usually too low and I have to stoop down to sing! And Chabad is notorious for that (which is why I promised I wouldn't blog about it).

Thu Dec 29, 05:50:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

It did occur to me that playing in a club means singing over all the yacking in the audience, judging by the "cuts" on your CDs that were recorded live in performance.

Sigh--I guess that, if I'm going to choreograph line dances, I should expect a certain amount of background (or foreground) commotion. This ain't exactly the New York City Ballet, after all.

". . . Chabad is notorious for that. . . I promised I wouldn't blog about it." But it's okay for you to mention it on someone *else's* blog, huh? :)

Fri Dec 30, 12:41:00 AM 2005  
Blogger PsychoToddler said...

I just watched that Etan G video. I feel bad for Etan watching how rude they were, but like I said, par for the course.

Fri Dec 30, 09:12:00 AM 2005  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

I was just floored that anyone would be so inconsiderate and obnoxious. And in front of a television audience, noch besser (even better). Didn't these people even care how it made them look? Or were they so undereducated on the subject of derech eretz (common courtesy) that they don't even realize that they were doing something wrong?

Sun Jan 01, 02:58:00 AM 2006  
Blogger PsychoToddler said...

It's clear that they had little respect for what Etan was actually doing. So why did they put him on? He was a tool. They thought kids might be more likely to watch if they used this kind of music. When they were finished with him, they took his mic away.

Mon Jan 02, 06:35:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Ouch. That's the only explanation that makes sense. The lack of respect was about as blatant as it gets.

Tue Jan 03, 12:11:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Maya Resnikoff said...

You were choreographing recreational dances? It is terribly difficult to make a recreational dance look good in performance: the intentitions of the two are just usually different. I've never done any recreational choreography- in the Israeli Dance world, that gets one involved in politics, and politics are something that I do not need any more of. But choreographing for a performance takes forever because one can't repeat things anywhere near as much. I can't imagine performing solo- you have no way of creating interest using different formations, as far as performance goes. What sort of audience/purpose were you intending your dances for?

Sun Jan 08, 10:58:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Debka_notion, that turns off to be a good question, much to my dismay. My intention was to choreograph dances that would be acceptable and of interest to the entire Jewish community. Unfortunately, I've run into (a) a lack of interest in an unknown choreographer's dances--the Israeli folk dance session leaders already have plenty of dances on their playlists, thank you very much--and (b) my own failure to take into account the fact that line dances are not frequently done at regular Israeli folk dance sessions, but are more frequently reserved for the far-rarer special folk-dance parties and 3-day-weekend marathons, whether local or at hotels or camps. Thus far, I've offered to teach my dances at one special event and 2 regular sessions and have been turned down. Bottom line: My dances *may* be of interest only to the "simchah-dance" (Orthodox wedding and Bar/Bat Mitzvah) crowd--assuming that even *they* are interested.

"Aniyah" is a relatively easy dance, and I could probably simplify the steps enough to make them doable even for those with somewhat limited mobility. "Modeh Ani" is more standard, but also the most balletic of my dances, and, frankly, looks better when danced by someone with a bit of dance training. As for "Ki V'Simchah," the one session leader who agreed to look at my dances informally after the session promptly declared that one a "performance" dance, and I must admit that the choreography is so complicated that even *I* make mistakes! I think it was a classic case of trying a bit *too* hard to make the dance interesting.

I told the Punster that our son may inherit a stack of DVDs of dances that hardly anyone's ever seen and that only the Punster and I have ever danced. Sigh.

The Punster's been working on figuring out how to burn DVDs of the videos that he or our son took of my dances. Tonight, he succeeded in burning the first DVD with the dances in the correct order (Ki V'Simchah, Modeh Ani, Aniyah). If anyone's interested in a DVD of my dances, drop me an e-mail. And then pray that (a) *I* can figure out how to burn DVDs, 'cause Punster CPA is about to disappear into his annual tax-return pile, and (b) that I can get access to his computer (the only one here with a DVR drive) between tax returns for long enough to make the videos!

Wed Jan 11, 01:45:00 AM 2006  

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