The Salsa Fix ‘ Defined
‘ A phenomenon into the next millenium
By Edie, The Salsa FREAK
Common Scientific National Standard Names:
"Salsa Fix. The Salsa Fix. SalsaHolic. Salsa-Holic. Salsa Holic. Get my Fix. My New Addiction. "
San Francisco, CA’
"I can’t stand this anymore. I feel like crap. I need my Fix’ tonight."
She looks in the mirror. Immediate stress. She feels like her hips are getting larger, and has this bloated feeling. It’s that time of the month. The choices in her closet are now very few. "Black, black, black’ something black. It hides all." She whispers to herself. She calls her girlfriend on the telephone, "I gotta get my Salsa Fix tonight, like for hours’ then, I’m not eating ANYTHING afterward. Going to bed hungry! I gotta get my Fix tonight, like REAL BAD!!! Are you with me?"
South Central, Los Angeles’.
Danny is in an argument with his mom about his father Nothing new. He’s sick and tired of hearing about nothing but complaints and problems from her. He knows he’s doing the best he can by listening, and can do no more. His five year-old niece is screaming in the other room, and his sister is fighting with his nephew. Right now, he wants to punch a hole in the wall. He can’t change this situation, nor his mom. She’s always been like this. In the middle of her whining and complaints, the screams and yells, he stares out the window at his car, then at his mother, appearing to listen, but his mind starts to wonder’ to the Fix he’s after tonight. Today, his "tolerance" of his own family is almost all he can stand. His mind is on the Fix only dancing Salsa can cure’ politely he smiles, and tells her it will be OK. He gives her a big hug, knowing there’s hope just hours away. He glances at his watch’ he can’t wait to get out of there’
Irate customers, complaints, and problems with her partner. Endless challenges and frustrating issues that aren ‘t getting resolved’. an upsetting phone call, an insulting email. Her head drops into her hands as she struggles to hold back the tears from her cubicle. She looks up at her computer, and notices the bookmark on Salsafreak, and begins to look for a Salsa story she found interesting last week. She smiles softly, and whispers to herself, "That’s it. I’m getting my Fix tonight. Screw these people. I’ll deal with this in the morning, when I’m in a better FRAME OF MIND."
Somewhere in a country far, far away’
He can ‘t get out of the country. The embassy kept his passport. His entire life is back home. He is helpless, and because of political bureaucracy issues, can do absolutely nothing. Everything depends on a single decision. He has nothing here. No work, and no future. In his frustration, he searches the Salsaweb Cityguide section for a local Salsa club in town. He smiles and finds temporary relief when he reads there’s a club just miles away. He contacts the local Cityguides World Correspondent, who picks him up, and introduces him around the clubs. He dances all night until his Fix is satisfied. The next morning, he steps outside, looks around, and is surprised at how much better he feels. He’s now able to deal with what is happening to his life. The birds are chirping, the wind is in his face’ the country isn’t all that bad. He can tolerate the situation a bit better now, knowing he can get his Salsa Fix here every once in a while.
"Want to go swing dancing tonight?"
she asks him, giggling on the telephone. He pauses for a moment, and replies, "Sorry, I had a bad day at work, and need a REAL Salsa Fix tonight. I can’t get it with Swing. I don’t know why’what time will you be here?"
"Well, I smile a lot than I used to. I’m addicted, I admit it."
"I would rather practice for a Salsa competition, than be with my girlfriend."
Manhattan, New York:
"Edie, a woman could walk into a club, be stunningly beautiful. A knockout. But if she can’t dance, forget it. I’m not going there. I need my Fix with women who can DANCE, and I don’t care what they look like. They could be butt ugly, but if they can dance well, I get my Fix with them, and that’s all I want. I don’t care."
The above stories are true experiences that people close to me have told me about in coffee shops and email. "Edie, there’s something about Salsa, I just don’t know what it is’I can’t live without it anymore. It’s changed my life. I don’t know what I was doing before. I’m a changed person. I’ve started to finally LIVE MY LIFE now. Everything is changed. Nothing is the same. I’m a better, more happy person now."
The Salsa Fix.
’ A phenomenon into the next millenium
What is it? Why is that? How does this happen?
What is it about this music and dance that drives us to insanity if we can’t get our Fix for a while?
A Salsera from New Jersey:
"I actually start feeling depressed when I haven’t been out dancing for a while. I start gaining weight, I start yelling at my loved ones, my work suffers, I feel terrible. When I dance, everything changes. The world changes. I swear, I feel the same, but the world around me is different."
Well I’m here to tell you, The Fix is like a "happy" hormone that is naturally generated in your body when dancing and sweating to Salsa music. I found a similar experience when I used to run/jog or workout quite a bit. A runner’s high is what would come close to describing it. Natural endorphines in your body are released during exercise, or pain, easing it, while at the same time, giving you "pleasant" feelings. These feelings temporarily hide the aches and pains your body is currently experiencing. Sometimes I’ll get menstrual cramps so bad, my natural endorphines kick in. At times, they are so powerful, that I start laughing and rolling on the floor (it hurts so good, that bad!). It’s intense, and an incredible feeling. Our bodies have such amazing defense mechanisms, and are absolute wonders of nature if you think about it. What incredible gifts they are to us!
Because dancing is a form of exercise as well, our body’s natural endorphines are also slowly released here, and the same feelings of joy and happiness are spread throughout your body, during and after the dance.
is a combination of a natural endorphine release, during the physical exercise of dancing. However, why is it that "Salsa", gives a special Fix ‘ more so than Swing, Lindy Hop, Tango, or Foxtrot? Could it be a natural high stemming from centuries past, the ancient Afro-Cuban tribal rhythms, "Mambo",meaning medicine of the gods, the lethal combination of physical activity with the rhythms of these mystical people?
"My friend is completely stressed out. He needs Salsa."
- Salsero in Amman, Jordan
I know many people who have told me they stopped going to the gym because their aerobic exercise time is now spent on the dance floor. "This sure beats the stair master!"
They would say.
I also have several friends who have actually stopped drinking and smoking because of Salsa! "If I drink and try to spin, it’s over. I’m on the floor, and the evening is shot."
"I spend so much time dancing, that my cigarettes just started getting in the way. By the time I put it out, the girl I asked to dance was already dancing with another guy!"
The Salsa "Fix" feeling is especially experienced by people with naturally addictive natures. Also by those of us who are "Type A" personalities, or who have compulsive obsessive behavior, or even have co-dependency issues. Once you start dancing Salsa, your vices are very richly satisfied.
For people with addictive behavior,
Dancing virtually every night and listening to Salsa music day and night more than satisfies an addiction problem. Salsa-Holics is the term here. Click here for Salsa-Holics Graph.
For "Type A" personalities,
Perfecting the dance and taking it to extreme levels like analyzing the beats people are dancing to, competing, and striving for continual perfection at all levels, and with all partners satisfies a typical "Type A" behavior.
For compulsive obsessives,
Having somewhere positive to go every night, and having something to repeatedly, and continuously keep perfecting is very important and satisfying here. For the compulsive, asking ANYONE on that dance floor, no matter who is a thrill, spontaneous clubbing and bar-hopping is a Fix as well. Thinking continuously about the dance and its Fix both day and night is also a way of satisfying this vice for the obsessive.
For people with co-dependency problems,
The simple act of hugging, touching, kissing friends on the cheek to say hello and good-by every night, in addition to being "accepted" unconditionally into another person’s arms, without a contract, hidden agenda, or obligation, richly satisfies a co-dependent. I’ve seen grown men hug each other so hard and sincerely say, "Hey!!! How you do’in! Great to see you old friend!!!!", when I KNOW for a fact, they just saw each other the night before.
For me, Salsa dancing takes care of my compulsive obsessive, co-dependant, and extremely addictive "type A" personality.
If you have any one or more of the vices above, you will not be able to stay away from Salsa. Dancing Salsa is like a drug that gets into your blood and takes over your body and emotions. It can sting like a bee, and be more venomous than a snake bite. Certain rhythms of Salsa are explosive and inexplicable.
"Edie, I find myself smiling more, and better able to deal with people at work. I can really get my Fix with certain songs’why is that? I can’t explain it, at all."
- Salsera in Amman, Jordan
At work, I got a 20% raise three months after I started Salsa dancing. People actually liked being around me, and loved my new happy ‘ go ‘ lucky attitude.
It has been argued that one could actually get their Fix simply listening to the music. This would be a mental and spiritual Fix. However, to get a "complete Fix", saturated by every ounce of your physical being, you must actually "dance" to the music, and even more, share the dance with another person in their arms. I have found, there are basically three different levels to the Fix....
There are three levels of the Salsa Fix:
Fix Level One:Listening to Salsa Music
‘ Mental and spiritual satisfaction.
Fix Level Two: Dancing Solo to Salsa Music
‘ Mental and semi-physical and spiritual satisfaction. Takes longer to be satisfied physically. Getting your fix may require more than just one song.
Fix Level Three:Partner Dancing to Salsa Music
‘ Complete mental, complete physical, AND complete spiritual satisfaction. Fix can be found with one song. Fix is magnified by each other's energy, and multiplied by several orders of magnitude. Starts and feeds the Salsa Addiction phase.
I found that more than anything else, I crave Fix Level Three, which is when two people are dancing as one together. The satisfaction of touching someone, holding their hands, and synchronizing in harmony with the music is richly amplified. Depending on the partner, the "Fix" feeling is multiplied, by several orders of magnitude.
The feeling of "The Fix Level Three" is similar to making love ‘ definitely more fun "with" someone, than by yourself. Normally, you won’t recognize the "orgasm" of that energy until the song is over, when you’re breathing heavily, and panting together, and for a brief second, stare into each other’s eyes, smile, and simply say "Thank you". Then, when you release from each other’s arms, the continual energy from that dance is still with you. You say to yourself, "Wow! That was INCREDIBLE!" You then look over to see who this person was you just danced with, and make a mental note to be sure and ask them to dance again.
For those of us that know, we’ve experienced that feeling, many times, and I’ve often heard people saying,
"Now THAT was BETTER than SEX."
"Nothing is better than this."
"I’m not going to be able to top that tonight. I got my Fix. I can go home now."
"How can I face my boyfriend/girlfriend after THAT?"
When this happens, I try as often as possible to tell the person I just danced with, "Wow! I just got my Fix with you!" They usually can’t hear me, or they say, "What?"
One time I said that to a guy, and he proceeded to blush, and replied, "I did? WWWOOOWWW!!! I gave the FREAK her FIX? Well’.. I just don’t know what to say’ I’m ‘ I’m HONORED!"
The sexiest thing a man has EVER said to me:
"Edie, I want to give you your Fix to THIS song, in my arms... tonight’."
‘ and then I want to write a poem on your body, with my lips’
- Edie, The Salsa FREAK!!
Edie, The Salsa FREAK!!
is one of the most recognized and respected Salsa Instructor / Performers in the world. In the past twenty years, she has traveled to 63 countries teaching the world to dance, and has been the first American to teach in 18 of those countries. She now lives in the high mountains of beautiful Colorado with her wonderful husband, Nick. You may contact her at www.SalsaFreak.com