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Sunday, November 4, 2012

making my flash mob dance dreams come true

I can't really describe to you the events of yesterday at noon in downtown Bangor. 

The 24 hours prior to that dance start time was spent teaching people in various waves, the steps to the dance. Turns out it was pretty difficult to learn the dance from the video. Our house was full of people, kids running all over, and music blaring in the living room (a.k.a. the dance studio) along with the sounds of "5,6,7,8!" Aunt Suzie, Uncle Buck and Noah spent the night and we stayed up making signs, practicing dance steps and visiting over a muchly needed bottle of wine.

The morning was spent with our house functioning as a revolving rehearsal studio. Finally I looked at the clock and realized I had to get my sweaty self downtown in 25 minutes.  When we pulled up to the meeting spot I could have cried with joy to see all the people waiting! 

I stood on top of the speaker and attempted to organize the troops.  I would be lying if I said it wasn't incredibly fun for me.

We headed to our dance spot.  Melissa and Katie were across the street at Paddy Murphy's and my friend Vanessa (with her daughter Brooke) stood in the middle of the square and pretended to talk about school.  Then the music began, Melissa and Katie ran across the street and the dance was underway.

My face hurt from smiling.  The feeling in the air was intense, exciting, exuberant.  We were screaming and hooting and the buzz was palpable.  I kept looking at my friend Katie wearing a YES on 1 sign on her torso and she looked like she was going to jump right out of her skin.  It made me even more excited. 

We were doing a flash mob dance in downtown Bangor.  First one ever.  And it was for YES on 1. 

I looked behind me at all the dancers and I couldn't believe they were getting it.  They were really dancing!!!  There were a bunch of people who only learned off the video and I was nervous that it would be controlled mayhem.  The people on the sides holding signs and cheering were as many as the dancers and their enthusiasm was contagious.  It was everything I hoped for and way, way more. 

And when it was over I wanted to yell, "AGAIN!!"

Then I was interviewed by the news and I think I pretty much bombed that part.  I wish that I had just kept reiterating that the reason for the dance was to bring back the love and positivity to the campaign as a way to comfort the people who were suffering as a result of it.  But I had to go say something about how if you don't believe in same-sex marriage then don't get one and, of course, that was what was on the news.  I lay awake last night hoping I hadn't done more harm than good on that front. 

My favorite question:  "Why a flash mob?"  Ummm...why NOT?

You can see the news clips on  WABI and  Fox/Channel 7

Here are some more awesome pics of the day.

Katie, of the jumping up and down, and her fierce dancing partner Alex.

Noah, being interviewed by Tim Throckmorton, and thus making his entire day.

That is Uncle Buck holding the amazing sign he made and Aunt Suzie with her arm up.  They are my heroes.

 My family came, our beloved babysitter came,  a couple drove 4 hours up and 4 hours home to dance.  We had moms with babies and toddlers strapped to their bodies, sighted and blind people, little kids and mature adults, dancers and non-dancers, gay, straight and in-between. We were the full spectrum of the rainbow, everyone included.  Because honestly isn't life a whole lot richer that way?

And here it is. You can see for yourself thanks to our incredible (and smart) friends Matt and Ange and their son Brady who did some camera work.  Thanks to them and to Melissa, our fearless choreographer.  I couldn't have done it without you.  (And thank you to Sandi for getting that I have to do things like this and having an inordinate amount of patience with me while I do them.)

Thank you to everyone who gave of themselves to make this what it was. I did it for me but I did it for you too.  I hope you took some of what was there yesterday and can hold it in your heart until this election is over. 

As for me, I am heading to the YES on 1 headquarters today because dancing is great, but there is still a ton of work to do in the next three days.  We are ahead in the polls but without our supporters going to vote, we will lose like we did last time.  Any chance you can put in a couple of hours of work in the next three days?  If so go to the office in the Twin City Plaza in Brewer, call Damon at 899-6489 to sign up for a shift, drop food off (homemade or store bought) for the countless volunteers, donate money to get ads on TV to counteract the lies the NO campaign is telling or talk to 5 people about their vote and let them know what is at stake for everyone when inequality exists.

Or maybe, if you're a super star, do all of these things.  Let's not leave this to chance.  THREE MORE DAYS.


monica gray said...

you guys are amazing. I had a blast doing this and it left such a wonderful feeling joining a huge crowd of wonderful people in such a great cause. You have motivated so many people and brought such love into the picture when there could be so much hatred coming into this election. thank you so much to both of you!

The Finicky Farmer said...

This is so intensely happy-making! And you guys look *great* dancing -- so much joy, love, and community there.

Anonymous said...

It was so much fun, and great to meet you and so many awesome people! I was surprised that it turned out so well, too. Thanks for setting it up! The energy was infectious, and everybody was so full of love.

Some day you will have to share with us how you manage to get so many things done. How you have time for all that you do is beyond me!

Fingers crossed for Tuesday. I will be wearing my sticker around school tomorrow and Tuesday to hopefully spark some more conversations with my classmates so I can get them to go vote. I wish I had the guts (and the time, but that is no excuse if you manage to do it) to do the phone bank. I feel so guilty for not doing it, but I am so shy that I would probably need my own trash can to puke into while calling people...

Grammie Annie said...

Suzanne, you are amazing! Thanks for the extra practice session. It was amazing to be a part of such a positive event.

Kristin said...

You did an awesome job pulling this together! I had a blast (even if I did have to dance in public).

I was planning on working the phone banks today, but what little voice I had disappeared with shouting during the dance. Oops. :)

Again, thank you for pulling this together. Thank you for writing yet another wonderful piece for all of us to read!

Henry Gay said...

Wow! Being the first one to do a flash mob in your area is something! I bet you’re proud of each and every one who participated and danced with you. All the effort you put into practicing and spreading the video about it was worth it. Dancing is definitely fun, especially when you have others doing it with you. Kudos to every one of you!

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