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Heartbeat Dance Team Performs in the Mud!!

I have always heard "The Show Must Go On", but here is a story that stretches even my imagination. Susie Merrill, Coach for Dance Team Extraordinaire Heartbeat, was fresh off her "Casino Night" accomplishment and decided she needed to perform another miracle. How she got these clear-minded human beings to dance in the mud is beyond me. This belongs in Ripley's "Believe it or Not". I want Susie to volunteer to solve the Middle East problems next. The story below was sent to me by Susie M. Read it to believe it: 

Several months ago, we were asked to perform at the Seabrook Music Festival. Excited and delighted by the opportunity to show off our routine, we gladly excepted. The first disturbing news came when we found out that the performance stage would only be 20ft x 20ft. Being the adaptable group that we are, we reduced the team from 8 couples to 6 in order to fit onto the stage. 

This Wednesday, we got the news that the stage would only be 12ft x 20ft, but that there would be a large grassy area in front of the stage in which we could perform! At this time, we had our doubts. Most of us wear Mo and Jill's dance boots. Dancing on grass could ruin them. Obviously, a team meeting was required. At practice on Thursday, we put our street shoes back on and could be seen dancing on the grass in front of the studio. Amazingly enough, the ladies would not be defeated. They managed to perform the windmill turns and 4 fast turns that they do around the men in the last segment of the two step. Since none of them fell down, they determined to go ahead with the performance. We did a quick rethink on our costumes as well and decided to wear black jeans and our team t-shirts instead of our satin outfits.

Saturday morning dawned cold and wet, but Heartbeat could not be deterred--the show must go on. We arrived at Seabrook and the Music Festival around noon. Of course, the place was empty. We felt so sorry for the organizers of the event. There were beautiful tents and gorgeous stages with some great bands playing, but most of the spectators just did not seem to want to brave the weather. Luckily for us, we were performing under a huge tent, so the grass was dry. We were cold, but determined. We were also delighted to see a fairly large audience. Little did we know, but these were all the parents of the Jazzercise group that was dancing at 1pm. When the Jazzercise group left, so did the audience!! At that time, Randy Goshorn was approached by the director of the Seabrook Children's Theater. They were supposed to perform outside, and the rain was going to destroy their set. They wanted to know if they could perform in the tent before us--promising that it would not delay us much past our scheduled 2pm start time. Now, how could Randy turn down all those kids, so of course, he agreed. Meanwhile, Brian White, who had forgotten to bring a jacket was beginning to turn blue. Suzanne Hegemier and Ann Bush immediately came to his aid and wrapped their arms and their jackets around him to keep him warm. Meanwhile, Bill Merrill went back through the rain and mud to the parking lot to get a spare long sleeved shirt for Brian. For some reason, Brian DID NOT seem as appreciative of Bill's efforts as he should have. He seemed to be quite comfortable having the ladies take turns keeping him warm.

Janet and Ray Meyer and Susie and Bill Merrill spent this time trying to find people who were listening to the Texas/OU football game. Being avid Sooner fans, they were having a GREAT time, in spite of the cold.

We were delighted to see the audience pick up as the Children's Theater did their version of Willie Wonka's Chocolate Factory. Unfortunately, once again, we learned that the audience was made up of parents who were anxious to leave as soon as their children were done. Chris Henderson kept wondering where our parents were. Not to be discouraged, Randy began to mark off the space we would need to dance and to move back the spectator chairs to give us room. At that time, we noticed that there was a tent pole right in the middle of the grass, and we would have to dance around it. Because of our excellent training at SSQQ in dancing around poles, this only caused us a moment of panic.

It was 2:30, and we were ready to begin. Jackets came off, smiles went on, and Heartbeat was ready to hit the grass! In front of an audience of 10 people, this group really had the time of their life. I have never seen them have so much fun while they performed. It seems as if the rain, the grass, the lumps in the ground, the pole in the middle of the floor, all combined to give them an attitude that they were just going to have a good time. It showed. At one point Suzanne Hegemier did a turn and came up face-to-face with the pole! Instead of panicking, she laughed and walked right around it!! She didn't miss a beat. 

There were two ladies standing next to me who kept talking about how good the team was. They kept laughing and applauding. It turns out that one of the ladies danced with the Houston ballet for 20 years. Now she wants to come to SSQQ and take lessons!!

All kidding aside. This group really deserves a pat on the back. It would have been easy to just give up, but they never wavered in their determination to get their performance done.

At this time I would like to congratulate Susie on the victory of her alma mater, Oklahoma University, on its stunning blowout defeat of arch-rival Texas University. Susie was the victim of a well-planned practical joke by UT grad Tom Flaherty at the studio last Friday. When she returned from Break Time, practically everyone in her class was wearing a UT shirt of some sort provided by Tom, who apparently shared his entire wardrobe. Tom clearly expected a Longhorn victory, which makes the victory extra sweet for Susie. She had to teach the second hour looking at all those detestable Orange and White UT shirts. Talk about professionalism!!

For the record, I was neutral on the results of the game. However I did enjoy the "Be True to Your School" fireworks between Tom and Susie immensely. 


Cupid Strikes Again... and Again... and Again!

Tom Maples and Yvonne Granger to Marry on October 14th!

Although SSQQ doesn't get to take credit for Tom and Yvonne meeting, we do get to take credit for getting Tom ready to dance at his wedding!  Yvonne is a great Whip dancer and she made her desires clear: Please learn to Whip!!  Responding to the pressure, Tom concentrated in Whip class much harder than most guys and was rewarded for his efforts... Yvonne wore big grins to class as she watched his progress!!  But Tom is really the lucky one - watching Yvonne move while she dances is a definite reward in itself for Tom's hard work!  Best wishes to both next weekend!!

Larry Carlton and Brenda Evetts get Engaged!

Speaking of Whip, about a year ago in the same class that Tom Maples (see above)  took to get ready to dance at his wedding, a beautiful lady named Brenda Evetts was clearly one of the stars of the class. With her good looks and big smile, Brenda was also a natural dancer. She looked great when she did the Whip!!  However I wasn't the only one to notice. Almost immediately Larry Carlton took note and asked Brenda out.

Larry Carlton is a holder of one of SSQQ's Lifetime Contribution Card holders. Larry is a carpenter-extraordinaire. Not only will you see his work on display in a week or two when Dracula's coffin re-emerges, but he designed and made the big "S-S-Q-Q" letters you see in Room 3 as well as the signs on the doors for the men's and women's restrooms. In addition Larry was instrumental in helping remodel the studio on many different occassions. However the thing I like Larry for the most is his wonderful annual Christmas hayride to look at Christmas lights each Decemember. I look forward to it all year long!  

Now in a perfect case of seeing good deeds rewarded, I am happy to announce Larry and Brenda are engaged. I am very happy for both!!

Bruce Boulanger and Margaret Williams get Engaged!

As for "Heard it Thru the Grapevine", sometimes I think this section of the SSQQ Web Site is very appropriately named. Just such a situation occurred this week when I got an email from Gary Richardson that stirred the waters. 

You probably have already heard, but another engagement was made last night, between Margaret and her beau. I donít remember his name, you probably know who they are as she is the only Margaret I know there. Nice young couple that has been dating for quite a while. He popped the question to her last night right before coming to the Longhorn at dinner is my understanding. Gary 

I wrote back: 

Gary, typically an engagement notice requires two first and last names... Any ideas??

However, Gary didn't have a clue, so I emailed Bruce Boulanger: 

Hi Bruce, I heard a rumor (see below) that an attractive lady namedMargaret and a young man whose name no one seems to know because he is quiet announced their engagement on Tuesday at the Longhorn.... Was that you?

If I am wrong, please forgive... I just didnít want to say anything without being sure. 

Rick Archer 

And Bruce replied:

Yes, Margaret Williams and I are engaged!  The wedding date is March 10.  Iíve just been too busy to email you about it, so that you could add it to your website.  Besides, Margaret and I wouldíve told you at dance class on Sunday night.  Bruce

Then Bruce added some interesting extra information a couple hours later:

Margaret and I met at a Friday night SSQQ practice session back in January.  Margaret was looking for someone to Waltz with and a mutual friend told her I've taken classes.  So, he brought her over, introduced us and that started everything.  So, I guess we're another SSQQ couple. 

Forgot to tell you that I proposed to her on her birthday (October 3rd).  Also, I did wait until after she took the curlers out of her hair before I asked. 

"Margaret's Curlers"!?  Margaret will probably whack him one for mentioning that... Bruce is indeed very quiet, but now we know why - when he says things, he gets in trouble!!  ;-)

I might add that I don't consider Bruce and Margaret "another SSQQ couple". It is amazing how many people have gotten engaged and married this year. As far as I am concerned, every one of the couples are some of the nicest people in the world!!  It is amazing how many decent, smart, down-to-earth people hang around this place. You know the type... the kind of person you would want to marry!! 

Best wishes to Bruce, Margaret, Tom, Yvonne, Larry, and Brenda.... plus all the other 20 couples that are engaged or got married this year!!  If you are interested, either scroll down and see the list at the bottom of this page or simply click here


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