Look, I tried being nice. I tried being distant. I tried dropping hints, but nothing ever worked. I never meant to hurt your feelings, but after your latest outburst, you’ve clearly demonstrated that there’s no point in subtlety, so I’m just going to come out and say it:
No. I do not love you, now that you can dance.
Honestly, how am I even supposed to feel about that kind of question? While I do commend you for adding the mashed potato and the twist to your repertoire, let’s be honest here: Those incredibly common dances aren’t all that difficult to learn, and even if they were, it’s baffling (and quite insulting, frankly) to think you consider me the type of person who would make their love contingent on something like that.
Also, not that there would’ve been a “good” way to ask me that kind of question, but I didn’t care for your tone one bit. I don’t claim to be some kind of love expert or anything, but if you truly want to know if you’ve stolen someone’s heart, there’s got to be a better way than repeatedly screaming, “Tell me!” while your friends harmoniously echo your unhinged demands.
“Would you like to go out sometime?” for example, is a far more reasonable question after declaring that you have learned to dance. Or, if you’re looking for something a bit more in tune, syllable-wise, with your incredibly off-putting rant, perhaps something like “Will you date me?” would suffice. I understand that those options might not sound as catchy as the one you went with, but your choices here are pretty much between “Might get you a date” and “Might be used against you in a court of law,” so maybe rethink your strategy next time.
Speaking of strategy, do me a favor and explain to me exactly how this whole thing played out in your head before you went through with it. You make a big scene in front of everybody, do your janky little twist you’re so proud of, and then based on that, and that alone, I choose you as my mate like we’re birds in a nature documentary or something? The missing formula bridging this casual acquaintanceship and true romance was, if I’m getting this correctly, your newfound ability to do the mashed potato?
Frankly, it’d be easier to understand the irrational confidence your approach requires if your dancing was wildly innovative or something (if you danced like a robot, for example, or somehow propelled yourself across the floor like a worm), but you’re just doing the same dances as the rest of us, and to be honest, none of us are doing them so well that it’s all that impressive. Have you seen James Brown? Since it’s currently 1962 (as you’re well aware, of course), I assume his most memorable work is yet to come, but regardless, do you think your dinky little mashed potato is better than what James Brown is doing? Do you think it’s even significantly better than what I can do? Your question is like asking me if I’m in love with you because a footrace between us would be reasonably close. Look man, I’ve seen your twist. It’s fine. I’ll even give you “pretty good.” But you know what it’s not? It’s not “Overlook the abundance of red flags I’m clearly raising right now” good, not by a long shot.
Look, I don’t know how you found out about it, or why you considered it an appropriate venue for this sort of confrontation, but I think you owe me, my friends, and everyone else who attended my niece’s baptism a sincere apology. Thanks to this incident and disturbing obsession with the mashed potato and the twist, my father, the mayor, has announced that he’s going to ban dancing in this town altogether. It’s only a matter of time before everyone finds out who’s to blame, so if you know what’s good for you, you’ll gather your belongings, take the first train out of Footloose, Oklahoma, and never come back.
Betty Sue Footloose