These Olympic games always bring me back to my time at the Olympics. I danced on the college dance team. Oddly enough, I didn’t audition. I didn’t think I wanted to do anything with dance past the high school dance team. I think everyone who tried out for the high school dance team made it. College was different and I think my ambition flew out the window. My body had undergone a number of injuries as well and I wasn’t sure I was made for that kind of sport.
I knew a few girls on the UVDT (Utah Valley Dance Team) who I had danced with at Timpview. One day I got a call. The team was in a bind. One girl had decided to up and leave the team without warning and they needed someone to fill in fast. I woke up the next day at 6am and found my way into the gymnasium and followed along my new dance team about a beat and a half behind, trying to make up for the lack of practice and rustiness.
It felt good to be back on a team. For the first part of that semester I was feeling lost. Being part of a team, no matter what it is, gives you purpose. You are part of something greater than yourself and it helps give you direction in that great new crazy college life.
I loved that team. What a blessing it was to have been able to dance with them. We were the dance team as well as the song leaders. We would cheer and dance at the activities and the basketball games. This of course was super fun as all the basketball players were super cool and dreamy.
Having 6am practice was near torture for a college student. My friends and I would stay up late, real late. I would nap for a couple hours and head to dance. I’m sure my dance advisors secretly rolled their eyes at these young giggling girls who were being reckless in their new found freedom of college.
The olympic games were coming to Utah. This was such a big deal for the whole state. Construction plans were made and put into action and the excitement was buzzing.
Our advisors came in one day and told us we were invited to dance for the games! The olympic hockey games were being held at Peaks Ice Arena and we got to be front row to the madness.
Let me tell you what, those hockey games are madness! I had heard about the fights that broke out the second the bell would ring, but seeing it first hand and being only a layer of plexiglass away from the violence had me screaming out loud. Just like a jump scene in a movie I would yell out in fear. I soon got used to it and got a kick out of it. It was such a blast!! We loved the games and being a part of history was amazing. We had olympic outfits, cheers, dances, pins. We did all this with our heads held high with pride that our state was able to host the olympics. WOW what an experience.
I was just starting to date Brian at this time and he and I would hang out after the games. He lived only a couple blocks from the arena so I would go over after. Our uniform hair was slicked back into a bun. I had heavy makeup on as well. I would head over and take out that bun and shake out that tight feeling. Brian looked at me one time laughing and said, “You look like Willy Lopez.”. Do you know who Willy Lopez is? Willy Lopez is the murderer on the movie “Ghost”. Google it. It ain’t pretty, I’ll tell you that much. He has awful hair in the movie that’s long, wavy and wild. Thank goodness Brian liked me for me and didn’t get turned off from this disheveled version he was dating during the games. I also knew that there was something awesome abut a guy who I could hang out with in my sweats, with bad hair and horrible.
That’s my kind of guy.