Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Turkey Trot Scandal

When I think of the Turkey Trot, which I seldom do, I envision adults in barns hopping around while holding hands.  Don't you?  Turns out that was not the case.  The Turkey Trot, along with other bird-themed dances, (chicken scratch and buzzard lope) forced communities into full Footloose mode!  Why?  Young people held each other close in these dances.  Because there was hopping involved, often on one foot.  Had to hold your partner fairly close so as to avoid the dreaded Catfish Flop.  (I made that last dance up.)  Adults were not happy with the touching and wiggling around involved. (Grinding, anyone?)  Teens were arrested and went to jail!  'Floor inspectors' patrolled the ballrooms, hunting down any and all dance violators!  This craze took place around the turn-of-the-century, 1900ish, so the ubiquitous Mr. Kevin Bacon's dancecapades were decades away.  Bet the Turkey Trot would make those '80's moves look smoooooth.

Panati's parade of fads, follies, and manias : the origins of our most cherished obsessions / Charles Panati

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