Yesterday evening I was sitting at the kitchen table having a very well deserved cuppa (it was a long and busy day) and having a nice chat with Miss. D. Well, it was a sort of chat because as all of us who are parents to a teen will know, 'the chat' is usually a triangle between you, the teen, and their mobile phone (one cannot risk losing that Snapchat streak).
So we're chatting away and this random comment occurs...
Miss. D: Oh no! Abi's keeping the minis!
Miss. D: Abi's keeping the minis!
Me: What minis?
Miss. D: The minis!
Me: I have no idea what you're talking about. Minis as in cars?
Miss. D: No! The minis as in the dancers
Suddenly random comment makes perfect sense. I had assumed she had a friend by the name of Abi and that she collected minis (I was thinking cars or Mini Rolls, which incidentally, I love), but no, of course not, silly me. She was talking about Abi Lee from the programme 'Dance Mom's'.
Miss. D is not a dancer, has never shown any interest in dance, but she is totally hooked on this programme and I totally understand why. I enjoy it, well mostly. I love that it shows how much hard work and dedication dance takes. The injuries that occur and the hours that are put in to training, rehearsing and perfecting, so that the final work looks effortless and beautiful. I also love that it shows just how tough dance teachers can be. Dance is a discipline after all.
However, there are elements of the show that drive me totally nuts. If you've never seen it you will guess from the title that as well as featuring the girls, this show spends a lot of time with their mothers and their dance teacher. The young dancers on the show, are all talented dancers, who work hard, and show amazing maturity, which is more than can be said for the adults.
Oh my goodness, the shouting matches and snide remarks are a whole other world, I've never seen anything quite like it. Mothers go in to the dance studio during lessons/rehearsals to complain to Abi, who gives as good as she gets, and all in full view of the kids! Really? Okay, so I know we're going back many, many years here, but when I danced, parents dropped us off, did what they had to do and then returned when the lesson was over to collect us. If they did arrive for pick up early, they would sit on the chairs outside, and if they were desperate to watch, they'd have to do so through the crack in the door. They certainly wouldn't dream of coming in during a lesson to speak to the teacher. She would have been fuming and the child would have been mortified. Although, that wouldn't make nearly such good television.
As for me, I'd much rather see more dancing and less arguing, but that's just a personal thing; because even after all these years of not dancing, I miss it terribly, but love to see others perform. One thing that can certainly be said, though, for all the arguing, shouting and tears, the kids, mums and their teacher are at the end of it all, a fabulous team.