Bwog sent Daredevil Dancer Maud Rozee into the heart of Barnard’s dance studio 2 to report on McAC’s highly anticipated “Zumba Study Break with President Spar” event.
I had mixed feelings about the idea of Zumbaing with President Spar at first. The sensible part of me asked “why would I want to embarrass myself in front of my idol President Deborah Leticia* Spar?” while another, more primal, part of me said “YOU HAVE TO DO THIS.” Against my better judgment, I set out to Zumba with DSpar come hell or high water, by which I mean that I set an alarm so I could get up before 8 to snag a spot on the list.
Having never Zumba’d before, I didn’t really know what to expect. Little did I know that for DSpar, Zumba is the 10th Way of Knowing. We were informed before the class that President Spar had opted to bring in her own instructor, instead of the scheduled one from Fitbear. The instructor, Simone de la Rue (her real name) was a former Broadway dance who looked too spritely to be real (in a hot way). She’s worked with tons of celebrities, including Sandra Bullock, and she and DSpar are great friends. DSpar raved about how fun and sweet-smelling her studio, “Body by Simone”, was. She said she’d been waiting 30 years for an instructor like Simone, which I thought was rather romantic.
After we signed our liability waivers, Simone announced that what we would be doing wasn’t actually Zumba, it was something a little more “high impact”. This was met with hastily stifled groans from the 22 student attendees, but DSpar looked cool and collected. And for good reason. Maybe women can’t have it all, but DSpar’s gym shorts gave proof that they can have the lower bodies of 19-year-old varsity athletes. She spun and kicked and scuttled around the dance studio in perfect synchronization with the instructor. She could’ve given Millie the Dancing Bear a run for her money, and with much less animal cruelty, too.
Having all the gross motor co-ordination of Snuffleupagus, I fared worse. I soon figured out that Zumbaing basically consists of trying to imitate the moves of somebody who is a much better dancer than you and who is also having more fun. So, for me, it was just like every First Friday. My ineptitude earned me a few bemused looks from Simone and President Spar herself. They were probably charmed by my refreshing inability to recognize my right from my left. Eventually, I started to get the hang of it, and even added a few moves of my own, like the “my-lungs-are-burning stomach clutch”, the “oops-I’m-so-sorry shuffle” and the “what-the-fuck-am-I-doing shrug”.
My favorite moment of our 45 minute session was when some Kanye West lyrics of questionable misogyny came on and Simone hurried to change the track. I would’ve laughed but I was too out of breath.
I was both relieved and disappointed when Simone told us our Zumbaing was done. She then led us in some hardcore stretching attempts. I can report that DSpar excelled at stretching because I was sitting up, looking around and trying to touch my toes while she and others were folded up like delicious pretzels.
Afterwards, DSpar stuck around and sweatily joked with the students in attendance. She confirmed that, as we all suspected, the whole idea of a “Zumba Study Break with President Spar”had been intended as a challenge to President Bollinger. Finally, she left us with a promise to meet again at Midnight Breakfast. And indeed we shall, and I will feast with abandon, secure in the knowledge that I recently burned like a million calories during the best Zumba-with-President-Spar workout of my life.
* Leticia is probably not her real middle name.