The Zouk “Basic” is like the forward and back of Salsa, only different and nothing like it at all. During it, the leader’s right hand is under his partner’s left arm on her upper back. As you turn the girl counterclockwise in the basic “Exit” it is vital that you lower your right hand to her waist, or otherwise as she spins you will inadvertently cop a feel. Knowing my miraculous ability to knock out foibles like a China sweatshop knocks out dog fur jackets…I think we all see where I’m going with this.
In class we form a circle, or ellipsis depending on the dimensions of the room, where each couple dances until the teacher calls out “ROTATE.” The leaders, (generally men) stay in place in the circle while the followers (generally women) rotate so you have a chance to dance with every available partner in class and also be proudly boast that male chauvinism is still alive and well in the 21st Century.
Vanessa rotated to me as the instructor guided everyone to do the move we were working on, which involved an Exit. I don’t know where my head was but, as if you didn’t see this coming, I didn’t lower my hand from Vanessa’s back to her waist as she turned and so it glided over the mountainous terrain of her chestal region.
I was in a predicament similar in kind to when someone with whom you are associated with but can’t exactly call a friend cuts an audible fart. If it’s quiet enough of a gas passing, the socially proper thing to do is to pretend it never happened, leaving the farter thinking, “Hey, I got away with it!” If the mildly audacious fart starts to stink to high heaven you might be able to save face for the farter with, “I heard they found a decomposing elephant carcass in the ventilator shaft and it smells like putrid rotten eggs.”
The dilemma comes when the fart is blasted at the volume of a mining company’s exploding dynamite. If you ignore the thunderous fart, both the farter and the fartee will reside in an awkward silence that can be more torturous than the malodorous possibilities. In this case it would be proper for the farter to say, “Sorry, bad Mexican food last night” to which the fartee politely responds, “No problem,” as if the fart was no big deal, when in fact it was a huge deal.
I had no experience with accidental breast copulation and so my mind, striving for something familiar, latched onto the fart protocol. I couldn’t deny the obvious and so I addressed it in what I thought was an inoffensive way.
“Excuse me?” she asked with disbelief painted on her face as conspicuous as the vomit in a drunk’s beard. Had I any sense I would have said, “Nothing,” and cut my losses. But I have no sense.
“I assure you that I didn’t feel much besides a little nipple–not saying that your nipples are small, just that I didn’t really get a great feel, which was probably due to that bulletproof bra you were wearing. Just a suggestion: looser bra. You really want to give the ladies room to breathe.” Her jaw dropped like Pinocchio the first time he realized that, unlike his nose, his penis was fixed at a quarter-inch.
I called an impromptu meeting of all the gods of every religion ever to inhabit the Earth into the Situation Room in my head, as clearly I had a situation on my hand that felt much more silicon than fatty tissue. I begged them to help me out of this self-dug grave in which I found myself standing, Vanessa looking down on me, her eyes gunning bullets of disgust like a scene from Goodfellas. I don’t know if it was Krishna or Zeus or Yahweh or Jesus but precisely at that moment, as if a booming voice from above, the teacher called out: