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The Stooooopid

The Background:
Ballroom dancing is a bit polarized at the University. The official organization is run by people who are interested in competition. The International Style classes are more competition oriented. The American Style dances are more social-dancing oriented. There's crossover, to be sure, but that's sort of the way everything swings. Okay, fine.

The History:
Much hate between the original founders of the university organization and the American Style teacher. One event in recent history: one organization member (not a professional by any means) told her he wanted to take over the American Style beginner classes and teach them for free. International beginner classes would still be taught by the professional International style instructor, and that instructor would still be paid. The organization member who wanted to take over the American Style classes was biased towards International Style and would effectively be feeding the beginner students into International Style, and thus getting rid of incoming American Style altogether.

American Style teacher waaaaaaaay pissed. Verbally flicked off uppity organization member. End talks.

The Recent Events:
Organization members have now cycled through a couple of undergrad generations, and now are interested in reconnecting the International Style crowd with the American Style crowd. Overtures are made to advanced American Style student to maybe teach a couple of American Style basics to newcomers so they might get interested in American Style classes, too. American Style student contacts American Style instructor to see how opinions are faring.

American Style instructor very upset because she sees this as a potential lead-in to original organization member's plan of American Style Destruction (TM).

Where I come in:
American Style student contacts me to help run negotiations and soothe fears of American Style instructor.
I agree - I think having some American Style exposure for newcomers is good, and will help connection-y foo. Also, will get rid of bias that many new students have about American Style not being as competitive or "real dancing".

So we meet with organization member tonight. American Style student says that here is the master plan - to eliminate bias by International Students that American Style is watered-down dancing and foster good relations between both crowds, we should demand that the organization do the following:

Have all newcomer dancers go to American Style and only later "graduate" to the competition-oriented International Style.

Oh, this would help get rid of the bias. Oh yes. And the organization will surely agree to losing all their beginner international students. That will foster good will and connections between the communities.

Oh, fucking brilliant.

And even after several email discussion, the American Style student still believes this is what we should demand from the organization.

No wonder the organization hates American Style on principle.



( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 22nd, 2005 07:08 pm (UTC)
Hi. I don't post much on your journal, but woah, doggies! The American Style student just does not get it. The idea of graduating from American to International styles would create a definite professional versus newbie bias. How frustrating.
Feb. 24th, 2005 10:27 am (UTC)
Yeah - it reminds me why I hate getting involved with "discussion" of issues, no matter how easy I think the solution is.
Feb. 22nd, 2005 07:52 pm (UTC)
I can't decie whether to be amused or horrified. More horrified, I think. Worse still because i know both major players and many of their helpers.... eek. Wow. Yeah. Ooky stuff.

Feb. 24th, 2005 10:29 am (UTC)
Some resolution was actually achieved last night. (American Style instructor consented to having American Style people review moves from her classes at the practice space, as long as we weren't going to be teaching them new advanced stuff.) Yay! Or so I thought until I got the email from the other American Style stufent about how he wasn't sure about this, but he'd be up for more "discussion" and he'd send me another extended email later today.

Oh fucking joy.

I am full of the hate. ;)
Feb. 23rd, 2005 05:58 pm (UTC)
Sounds like someone in this scenario needs a few conflict management seminars. And it's not you. >_
Feb. 24th, 2005 10:30 am (UTC)
[grin] Or I could just not be involved with any of it. Sooooo tempted.
Feb. 24th, 2005 10:45 am (UTC)
I'd suggest not, actually-no point. It'll only give you headaches you could just as easily not have to suffer through. :(
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )


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Jalen Strix

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