If Confucius Danced Salsa (2).

23 Apr

The following references are from “The Analects” » of Confucius, translated by Arthur Waley:

Book V, Par. 24:
The Master said, Clever talk, a pretentious manner and a reverence that is only of the feet — Tso Ch’iu Ming was incapable of stooping to them, and I too could never stoop to them. Having to conceal one’s indignation and keep on friendly terms with the people against whom one feels it — Tso Ch’iu Ming was incapable of stooping to such conduct, and I too am incapable of stooping to such conduct.

Book V, Par. 24

Choose your salsa cliques wisely? Salsa is an interesting pool of socialization: salsa gigolos befriend salsa gigolos, salseras befriend salseras, salsa gigolos befriend salseras, cliques form and then unform. All this happens within salsa’s swirling eddies. I have gone through this, this forming and unforming of salsa relationships, and the feeling I am left with is one of angst and loss — let’s call it salsa emo, or salsa gigoloemo. I’ve become wary of forming new salsa relationships, wary of repeating a different kind of salsa turn-pattern.

Book VII, Par. 25:
The Master said, A Divine Sage I cannot hope ever to meet; the most I can hope for is to meet a true gentleman. The Master said, A faultless man I cannot hope ever to meet; the most I can hope for is to meet a man of fixed principles. Yet where all around I see Nothing pretending to be Something, Emptiness pretending to be Fulness, Penury pretending to be Affluence, even a man of fixed principles will be none too easy to find.

Book VII, Par. 25

Pride is a tricky one. Salsa gigolos have pride. Salseras have pride. Salsa gigolos have a way of arranging ourselves according to some perceived salsa hierarchy, and subtly deferring to each other according to this implicit, unspoken-of order, like lions do. Do salseras do the same? One thing I notice is that salseras have a way of communicating to a salsa gigolo, whether he is worthy of asking her to dance, or to dance again. From a salsera’s point of view, it must affect her pride to be compelled to follow a bad lead, or to dance below her station. Do I do the same thing with salseras? I must, for I know I ask some salseras to dance more often than others.

Book VII, Par. 36:
The Master said, A true gentleman is calm and at ease; the Small Man is fretful and ill at ease.

Book VII, Par. 36

There was a time when I used to always get the hiccups, prior to going out to a salsa club. Why does salsa have this way of testing a salsa gigolo’s ego? When I think about it, my best nights have been when I was most at ease with whatever state I was in, be it happiness or melancholy.


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