strathspey Archive: Pilling

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Pilling

Message 9875 · REBECCA SAGER · 20 Dec 1997 16:50:51 · Top

Am I alone in never having used Pilling, and in finding the diagrams
irritating and mostly incomprehensible? I'm happy that I've never been to
a Ball where they were used on the cheat sheets! (I don't travel much
outside the Southeastern US) No point to this letter, just wanted to get
it off my chest.

Becky
--
Becky Sager,
Marietta GA USA
http://www.mindspring.com/~atlbrnch

Pilling

Message 9876 · Alan Paterson · 20 Dec 1997 17:06:33 · Top

Rebecca Sager wrote:

> Am I alone in never having used Pilling, and in finding the diagrams
> irritating and mostly incomprehensible? I'm happy that I've never been to
> a Ball where they were used on the cheat sheets! (I don't travel much
> outside the Southeastern US) No point to this letter, just wanted to get
> it off my chest.
>
> Becky
> --

No Becky. You're not alone. While I can usually understand the diagrams and
can appreciate the use of them as an aide-memoire, I deplore the tendency to
try to learn from them (which seems to be becoming more widespread over
here). When I prepare crib sheets for our dances, I use text. (Thanks, Peter
Hastings!)

Alan

--
Alan Paterson
Berne, Switzerland

Pilling

Message 9877 · RSCDSSD · 20 Dec 1997 18:30:58 · Top

Becky,

Just a word of support and understanding for your position on Pillings
diagrams. I don't care for them and find that it takes me longer to
"translate" them than it does to read a few brief words. I used to rail
against their use, but have learned that there are verbal learners and
symbolic learners (not sure that's the proper adjective) so try to co-exist
peacefully. But, like you, if the crib sheet at a dance consisted only of
diagrams I'd be an unhappy dancer.

Marjorie McLaughlin
RSCDS SD@aol.com
San Diego, CA

Pilling

Message 9880 · Priscilla M. Burrage · 20 Dec 1997 19:12:32 · Top

On Sat, 20 Dec 1997, RSCDS SD wrote:

> Becky,
>
> Just a word of support and understanding for your position on Pillings
> diagrams. {snip}
> But, like you, if the crib sheet at a dance consisted only of
> diagrams I'd be an unhappy dancer.

Now you know how those of us who are graphically oriented feel. I don't
complain; I just write Pilling-like symbols on the edges of my crib sheet
-- if the designer of the crib sheet left enough room. Otherwise, I make
a separate sheet.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Priscilla Burrage Vermont US
(pburrage@zoo.uvm.edu)

Pilling

Message 9884 · Ron Mackey · 20 Dec 1997 23:43:27 · Top

> Date: Sat, 20 Dec 1997 16:02:28 +0100
> From: Alan Paterson <alanp@paranor.ch>
> Organization: Paranor AG
> Subject: Re: Pilling
> Reply-to: strathspey@tm.informatik.uni-frankfurt.de

Alan wrote:-
> While I can usually understand the diagrams and
> can appreciate the use of them as an aide-memoire, I deplore the tendency to
> try to learn from them (which seems to be becoming more widespread over
> here). When I prepare crib sheets for our dances, I use text. (Thanks, Peter
> Hastings!)

Hi,
It seems not so long ago that crib sheets themselves were
'deplored'. If one took anything at all to a dance/ball it was the
complete set (to that date) of RSCDS pocket books. You had to write
your name on it clearly too.!! They were never taken, they were
'lost' !

Cheers Ron :)
+---------------------------------------------------+ < 0
| EMail Ron Mackey mailto:Ron.Mackey@BTinternet.com | `O>
+---- or via http://www.newone.demon.co.uk/ -----+--+ /#\
| or RMM@newone.demon.co.uk | |>
+------------------------------+

Pilling

Message 9888 · REBECCA SAGER · 21 Dec 1997 02:31:56 · Top

Some interesting responses today on different ways of learning! Working
outside this afternoon I got to thinking about it and realized that I
always prefer words to diagrams - when putting together "some assembly
required" articles, I always find it easier to follow verbal instructions
even in French or from-the-Japanese "English", than diagrams only.
A couple of responses, including one which came to me off-server, touched
on something else I find irritating (sorry, I guess I'm getting old and
crotchety) which is reading dance directions in whatever form while
actually standing in the set waiting for the dance to begin. In our area,
dances are almost always briefed, and I find a good briefing while I'm in
position to dance is worth more than any diagram or cheat sheet. I'll
also admit to being blessed with a great memory for dances - not for much
else, unfortunately, but I know lots of dances. Too bad it's not a
marketable talent.

Becky
--
Becky Sager,
Marietta GA USA
http://www.mindspring.com/~atlbrnch

Pilling

Message 9889 · Brenda Claridge · 21 Dec 1997 02:36:00 · Top

>No Becky. You're not alone. While I can usually understand the diagrams and
>can appreciate the use of them as an aide-memoire, I deplore the tendency to
>try to learn from them (which seems to be becoming more widespread over
>here). When I prepare crib sheets for our dances, I use text.

Seasonal pressures have made me miss most of this thread, so apologies if
I'm repeating.

Whether you use Pilling or text depends on the way in which you learn
dances. I tend to see them as patterns on the floor, so Pilling is very
suitable for learning in this way. When 8 bars can be represented by one
diagram, it's very much quicker to learn than memorising several lines of
text.

Of course you need written instructions for finer points of the dance, but
I treasure my battered Pilling above all else.

Incidentally, if you try yourself to put dances into "Pilling-speak" you
realise how much effort has gone into compiling this book.
Brenda

Pilling

Message 9910 · Michelle C. Nogales · 23 Dec 1997 04:33:02 · Top

On Sun, 21 Dec 1997 10:25:01 +1300 Brenda Claridge <claridge@ihug.co.nz>
writes:

>Incidentally, if you try yourself to put dances into "Pilling-speak" you
>realise how much effort has gone into compiling this book.

Not only that, but if you do that you will also learn to read
Pillings more easily. I myself found them somewhat mysterious until I
devised a couple of dances and had to figure out how to make Pillings for
them. Translating an idea or an existing dance *into* Pillings is very
helpful in learning how to get the encoded information *out of* Pillings.
Cheers,
Michelle C. Nogales
San Francisco Bay Area

Pilling

Message 9918 · Ken McFarland · 24 Dec 1997 21:56:56 · Top

Becky wrote:
>Am I alone in never having used Pilling, and in finding the diagrams
>irritating and mostly incomprehensible? I'm happy that I've never been to
>a Ball where they were used on the cheat sheets!

I regret to tell you that a few months ago I was at a dance where there were
Pillings
and briefings, but no dance notes using common English language.
I found it awkward because I don't read Pillings and the MC had clearly been
told to keep the briefings short (as they should have been). I think if
there are cheat sheets, both styles should appear.

My own pet peeve about Pillings 'users' is when they interupt a poor MC who
is trying to give a talk through! Several times I've been a dancer on the
floor when another dancer who has been following along in Pillings will
interupt the MC excitedly to correct them. Many times the correction turns
out to be a mistake in Pillings, or a case of mis-reading the Pillings
notes! And it just seems like that borders on bad manners. Of course it's
also true that one does not need Pillings to correct a mis-guided MC ;-) but
that's a whole other issue.

Ken McFarland
Fairbanks, Alaska
farlands@polarnet.com

Pilling

Message 9920 · SMiskoe · 25 Dec 1997 14:57:10 · Top

Ken McFarland wonders if he is the only one not using Pillings. He's not
alone. Other than down the middle and up and circle, I have yet to decipher
the diagrams and much prefer a talk through and verbiage.
Cheers,
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord, NH

Pilling

Message 9935 · Peter M. Price · 27 Dec 1997 21:34:46 · Top

The different ways in which people learn is fascinating. My personal method
of learning a new dance is to take the written directions and translate
them into Pilling diagrams. I do this even for dances that are already in
Pilling. I find that the exercise itself is what "sets" the pattern into
my mind. It should also be obvious that I am very visually oriented.
(dancer see, dancer do) ;)

Peter M Price
New Haven, Ct
103500.1357@compuserve.com

Learn from the mistakes of others. You can't live long enough to make them
all yourself.

Pilling

Message 9936 · JMcColl526 · 27 Dec 1997 23:27:16 · Top

Count me in amongst those who do not use the Pilling book or diagrams. I
have used the book on rare occasions only.

I grew up in the era before the diagrams existed, and learnt to read
instructions and interpret them fairly quickly. I still much prefer to the
original word to any diagram or summary. Today, we seem not to encourage
dancers to learn to 'read and interpret'.

I wish more of them would make the effort themselves!!!

Jeanetta McColl
Framingham, MA

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