Ace of Base – “All That She Wants”

When: September 1993
Where: The Anna Bing Arnold Center
Who: Teacher Sheila
Weather: Unknown

In the spirit of the era, my mother took part in step-aerobics, a silly-looking activity that now takes the blame for millions of shot knees. She watched those Susan Powter videos, she of the Righteous Brothers haircut and guest-spot on the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Despite these embarrassing qualities, my mother didn’t listen to Ace of Base. If she had, she likely would have hated them.

But in 1993, she went back to Cal State LA and left me at the local preschool. I don’t know if my experience there constituted run-of-the-mill early childhood trauma or it was just my misfortune, but one of my earliest days there included the distasteful prospect of being forced to dance.

I’ve been forced to dance many times. The most recent was in Israel, to Party Rock Anthem (vomit), and it really puts me in a bad mood. I do everything fast, whether it’s writing, doing work, or whatever, but I’m only good in a social setting for about one hour, after which I’m usually exhausted. So being forced to dance is like torture. And this was our anthem. I felt like my mother, stepping up and down mindlessly on a plastic stool while watching someone do the same thing on TV.

Next: Fleetwood Mac haunts my nightmares

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