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La swing clubs you re doing it wrong

Swinging has always had kind of a gross connotation to it, right?

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It even lays down a rudimentary etiquette -- couples only, no drugs, no hard liquor, condoms please, an emphasis on consensus at every juncture. Their world seemed convincing, indeed even banal, while we were in that ballroom, but now that we're outside it seems utterly bizarre. It's not like we're addicted.

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He pulls her close, spins her away, dips and flips her, all the while his feet gliding smoothly as butter over a hot griddle. Yes, and no. Those who find and try swing, usually fall in love with it.

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Why should they embrace it? Swing nights can be found in Masonic lodges, YMCAs, restaurants, any place that has a wooden dance floor and a stage to spin records. And then there was that Gap commercial. And they all wore khakis!

They’re old and creepy

This is how it begins. In fact, no one looks bad right now, sartorially speaking, with fashions running from zoot suits and cuffed jeans for guys and gored crepe dresses and midriff-baring sailor suits for galsto just-come-from-the-office casual. Ladies, be receptive, let him turn you. Is she gonna hit her head on a ledge?

Is the guy dancing next to you drunk?

The couples rotate partners every minute or so. Some are smooth as cream, others not, though no one seems to mind, except Wilson, who winces at a couple doing, well, everything wrong: She le, and though she weighs about 85 pounds, her feet hit the floor like cinderblocks.

He, on the other hand, is so spindly and nervous, his dancing has the frantic quality of a bird caught in a net. When the class ends atShock throws on a few records to tide over the dancers before the band comes on.

It’s swing time!

Everybody can listen to this stuff. Though there is no more gorgeous swing club in L. The place is standing-room-only bywhen the seven-piece RCR takes the stage, the players in pinstripes and white ties. Though the dance floor in front of the stage can comfortably accommodate about 12 swinging couples, there are twice as many out there: girls with platinum hair and silk roses tucked behind their ears, guys in porkpie hats and peg-leg pants, all backed by a blazing horn section that makes the room look like a D-day celebration.

After a small p.

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Immediately, there are 60 people on the floor, switching partners after each song, chatting with friends, bragging to one another about their. Clearly, the scene is ageless, open to anyone, a triumph of aptitude over attitude.

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What is it about swing that makes it so egalitarian? This stuff, you listen to it and you just have to swing.

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Plus, I love the social aspect The coolest people on the floor tonight are Allen and Rudy Hall. A something girl in red cargo pants looks on in awe, and jumps off her stool when Allen holds out his hand to her, offering her a dance. But we always spend several months in the Los Angeles area, going from club to club.

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No hair gel, no high heels, no booze. Brandy, a budding journalist, and Nick, a dance instructor, both in their early 20s, just got in from Vegas.

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Where will they be staying? Lindy Groove can stay open late because it serves no booze, the only libations a large cold-water dispenser. Where else does one see a year-old young man willing to hold and gently tutor a woman old enough to be his mother?

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With every person, you have a different connection. The large room is packed, the air thick and humid. It looks like nothing so much as a photo out of an old Life magazine.

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But it looks the same. Nancy Rommelmann is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer.

Swingers are all wife swappers

She last wrote about the coffeehouse culture for Calendar Weekend. All Sections. About Us. B2B Publishing.

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