Did anyone else have square dancing as mandatory curriculum during elementary-level P.E.? Either I did, or I'm confusing my own life with a Beverly Cleary or Judy Blume book (which happens all too often. Are you there God? It's me, Aja). Regardless, although a petrifying prospect from K through 12, square dancing is a high-flying hootenanny
of a good time once you get past the scrutiny of critical peers and apprehension of girl-boy pairings. The Tractor's hardwoods may not be as shiny as a gymnasium floor, but the dust makes it that much more authentic, as does a live caller in lieu of a gruff, whistle-wearing P.E. teacher. He yelps out instructions, as Seattle's own Tallboys man instruments like fiddles, banjos, and (yes) clogs, inciting a mass movement of coordinated twists, turns, and do-si-dos that transform a dull room into a down-home energy explosion. Plus, at this point, the risk of cooties is quite diminished. A benefit for Seattle Tilth.