Milonga 101: no calls, please

The woman seated next to me accepted an invitation for the tanda.  As she walked to the floor, a call came on her cell phone.  She returned to the table to answer the call.  The man left the dance floor and waited for her to end the call.  She continued talking, and he invited another woman for the tanda.  It was obvious that the phone call was more important to her than dancing.  She didn’t bother to interrupt the call to say anything to him.

Cellular phones are a part of everyday life these days.  The milonga is one place we can forget about work and things to do.   A milonguero once told me that we leave our private lives at the door when we enter the milonga.  Today that appears no longer the case.  I notice women making calls or checking messages when they aren’t dancing.

I was dancing a vals tanda with a foreigner in Salón Leonesa.  A cell phone rang, and the man ahead of us answered the call while dancing.  My partner pointed out that the man didn’t leave the floor to talk.  This showed a lack of respect for his partner and other dancers.

Tango is a private conversation between two.  We can’t have two conversations at the same time.


One Response to “Milonga 101: no calls, please”

  1. Lilly Says:

    On my first trip to Bueno Aires I accepted an invitation of a man who wore a cell phone at the belt, and proceeded to check his calls once the song was over. I asked him if anything was the matter, anyone he left home gravely sick or perhaps, he was on call at a very important lifesaving job? But he said no, nothing serious, he just wanted to check if anyone called him. After the next song I politely thanked him, and left him to his cell phone.
    Curiously, it was at a tourist milonga (won’t name names), and it was, as you can imagine, a “quilombo barbaro”. I never went there again, but there was a small group of good dancers present . After the incident, which they witnessed, my stock must have rose high. They started looking at me one by one, and we danced. Later I would see them and dance with them in other milongas. So, something good came out of it after all. 🙂

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