>[Don:] >Oberdan, Terry, and others have put forth good arguments in favor of >briefings at formal balls. Yes, briefings are helpful. Yes, they make it >easier to do the dances. > >But consider some differences between fancy dress balls and other social >dances...
Don, there is a certain logic to your portrayal. However there are a couple
of unstated assumptions that don't stand up to close scrutiny:
(Assumption 1) "Briefings are an _informal_ activity". That is purely a
personal association that may be shared with or engendered by your close
associates. In our area the notion of applying a label of "formal" or
"informal" to briefings is non sequitur. I think of formality as having
mostly to do with dress, although I think there may be a deportment or
behavioral component as well.
(Assumption 2) "Dancers prepare less thoroughly for dances which will be
briefed". A good briefing should take no more than about 30 seconds. It is
intended to remind a dancer who has already learned the dance, the sequence
of formations and transitions and to get all the dancers in the set doing
the same dance. 30 seconds is far too short a time for someone to learn a
dance, so anyone expecting to use a briefing to learn a dance is misguided.
If you are thinking of a verbal description that goes on for a few minutes,
that is a talkthrough, probably with teaching content, and is not a
(Assumption 3) "_Higher Level_ is a desirable state". When I try to pin
down what might be meant by _higher level_, I get into trouble: Fancier?
More Magical? Mystical? Elevated? More Fun? More Funny? Hysterical? More
Satisfying? More Difficult? Dressier? More Frustrating? More Annoying? More
Primitive? More Sophisticated? More Pompous? More Pedantic? More Effort?
More Macho? More Feminine? More Aluring? More Flirtatious? ...Now perhaps
you appreciate my quandry, more or less! ;)
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