June 8TH 2004




Common sense and a sense of humor are the same thing, moving at different speeds.
A sense of humor is just common sense, dancing.

--Clive James




After a full week of fighting jet-lag, I'm finally getting back on schedule, and here is the first complete newsletter in almost a month. We had some trouble with our email list, so I am going to include my travel notes under "Added Attractions" for those who missed them and might want to take a gander. I've also posted all my trip pictures (wheeeee!) HERE


We've got a wonderful June for your dancing pleasure, with terrific bands at the Rhythm Club, a June 27th Lindy Workshop with Mike Convertino, and Swing Camp Catalina THIS weekend.



I guess we are just about the luckiest swing dancers around. I got an email this week from the Jive Aces saying that they had a great time at The Rhythm Club and want to come back. They've actually given me TWO dates! So mark your calendars and tell your friends: Wednesdays, September 22 and October 13. (They're worried that if they come twice, the attendance won't be as good -- I told them they have nothing to worry about -- right?!)


Once again, I would like to thank Glenn, Jessica, Russian Peter, The Professor, Nathan, Gio, and Ron (and all of you) for keeping things running smoothly in my absence. You all are the greatest, and so very much appreciated by me. Thank you. Thank you.



Last week started off with a bang, but a few fellows short. So guys, come on out of your hovel and join the fun! Here's a much needed class, and it's the very first time we've offered it! You know your basics, your swing outs, your sugar pushes... but they look like basics. You look around the dance floor and see people doing those same moves but with such style and panache. What the heck do they know that you don't know?! Let's take four weeks to explore all the opportunities you have to make ordinary classic moves look fantastic! You should have your swingouts, lindy charleston, and sugar pushes down and danceable.






Let's give 'em a great reception!

The Swing Syndicate is making a return engagement to The Rhythm Club, and let's really have a good showing for them. Last time they appeared, it was POURING rain, and only a brave handful of dancers appeared. As we remember, there may have been more band members on stage then dancers on the dancefloor. The band was totally deflated, but still played their hearts out. So this time, let's show 'em what were really made of!

June 9 dollars-12.jpg
June 16 dollars-12.jpg
June 23 dollars-12.jpg
June 30 dollars-12.jpg
July 7
Dance Lesson and DJ on the first Wednesday of each month from 7:30-8:00
8:00-11:30pm -- Dance! Dance! Dance!
(check our calendar)

Full details, click HERE
Directions, click HERE



This Week's Celebrations

Heidi Hardt
Connie Jo Hamilton
Derek Jensen

If it's your birthday this week, just let us know at the Rhythm Club so you can get your birthday dance!


If you didn't receive the weekly emails because of our "technical difficulties", here is the recap of Rusty's journal.

Also, the SCRAPBOOK is up from her trip. Click HERE to view the pictures; grab a cup of tea and relax...

May 26, 2004

I left Sunday morning, bright and early (too early for me!!). With change overs and delays, it was a VERY long day. But, when I arrived in Zurich, it was worth it. I have been here twice before, and it was just as green and lovely as I had recalled. The first day, Melanie and I took a little walk around her town. She lives in a small, almost village, town outside of Zurich. But after half an hour, I couldn`t keep my eyes open. At 1:30, I fell asleep. First day gone...

Day two, equally exhausting, but wonderful. My host was going for a course in Bern (the capitol of Switzerland) and invited me to ride the train in with her at 6:00 in the morning! Ugh. But I decided to do it, as when else would I get a chance to see the town. I am really glad that I did. It was a stunningly beautiful town. I went to the tourist office to find out where the synagogue was. It was within walking distance, so I went directly to it. Despite the "No Visitors, sorry" sign, I was able to talk my way in. I got a wonderful tour by the cantor. He explained that because of anti-semitism, they usually only have visitors with pre-arranged tours. But, he said that I looked like a nice person, so he would make an exception. I am so happy that he did, as I got to learn a lot about the history of the Jewish people in Switzerland. The synagogue itself, was about a hundred years old, and really beautiful. Sad, though, when he pointed out the bullet proof glass doors... But he said it was better than where he came from (Argentina) where they have bars on the outside...


Then I just wandered around the town. I met my host`s husband (he`s my host, too) for lunch, and he walked me around for a couple of hours. The town has a huge historic district following along a river. Everything in Switzerland is so well-kept. The old buildings are in great shape. And the streets are utterly litter free. It was amazing to see buildings hundreds of years old in perfect condition. Then I was on my own. I walked and walked and walked. Until I exhausted myself. I found a big public park, and took a two hour nap! I still had some more time before meeting up with Melanie, so I walked back into town, found a nice ice cream stand, and acted like a real European. I sat there for an hour! Just watching the people as they hurried to the train station. I met up with Melanie at the "Meeting Spot" ( which is a spot designated by a big sign with a spot and arrows pointing to the spot hanging from the ceiling). We took the train back to her town. I fell asleep at 9:30pm and woke up at 10:30am!


Today we started off with a breakfast at a little outdoor cafe in her town. Then we drove to a wildlife park and saw animals native to this area. It was really lovely and relaxing. Then we came back home and I took another 2 hour nap! This evening we went for a short drive to a nearby village from the 1300`s. It is called Zug and is right on a big lake overlooking the Alps (though the clouds were too low to see the mountains). After walking around during that golden sunset time which film makers call "Magic Hour", and taking more pictures than even seems possible, we sat down at an Italian restaurant on the lake for dinner and dessert. Sigh. It was perfect. Zug is just about as European picture-perfect as you could hope for.

Tomorrow we go into Zurich city center to have lunch with Lorenz Ilg. Some of you may remember that I taught with him two years ago in Russia. Then Friday, it is on to the Boogie Baeren swing dance camp in Landsberg, Germany. If you want to read about the camp... here is the link:

I hope you are all well and happy.

See you very soon,



June 2, 2004

Greetings Gates,

Well, my Zurich-Los Angeles airplane stumbled in at 9:30pm last night, three hours behind schedule... so I completely missed classes last night. Hope you had a good time with Ron Campbell -- Rhythm Pal extraordinaire!

The last four days of my trip were just fantastic. The Boogie Baeren swing dance camp was sensational -- as usual! They always put on such a high-spirit, well-rounded camp. There were loads of instructors from all around the world, four hundred students, and two great parties (one themed "Route 66" and the other "Jail House Rock"). I taught a bunch of classes at the camp: Hollywood Style Lindy Hop, 1920s Partnered Charleston, and Lindy Hop Level 1-4. I have finished loading up all my pictures on to the computer, and they should be ready in scrapbooks for your viewing pleasure by next week. I'm going to try to include a few in this email.


I heard that the Jive Aces were just great at the Rhythm Club on Friday. I got some good news from them, and that is that they're coming back in September.


Rusty & Her Rhythm Pals


Augie got his package! He was sooooo happy to receive it. Thanks to everyone who helped us assemble it.

Here's a recent email from him:

Hello everyone!!

This is your old pal Augie. I just wanted to give you an update on what's going on down here. We just got out of the field and we are getting ready for our next Operation. I can't tell you what it is but I may be out of communication for as much as month. We'll see. We just got finished conducting Boat Operations on the Euphretes River. We swept through the farm fields and neighborhoods on a foot mobile patrol and patrolled the banks of the Euphretes by RAC which is a Marine Corps Boat. On the third night we took mortar and Rocket fire while we were on top of an observation post on a building. It was kind of scary but really exciting at the same time. IT had been almost a month since we had received any contact. All we could do was call it up though. We did find a lot of weapons cache's and rockets. We blew them in place and continued our patrols. I don't know what we're doing next or if we're even going so bear with me. I just wanted to keep you all updated incase you were curious. Take it easy and I hope to hear from you soon.


Here's Augie's mailing address if you want to write to him:

Cpl Freeman, Lee A
1st Tank Bn, Tow Plt
UIC 41671
FPO AP 96426-1671

or if you would like to email him:

Rusty's Europe pictures are up! Take a gander...

SWINGCAMPCATALINA: It's this weekend! If you haven't made your reservations, there is still time! A bunch of us will be there, including yours truly.


Swing Shift

* Wondering what the heck a "gate"is? This was a phrase popularized by 1940's comedian, Jerry Colonna, who would holler it out every time he was introduced on the Bob Hope radio program. It was a friendly salutation to a swing cat (dancer or swing music enthusiast).


Our Swing Shift Rhythm Club (SSRC) is the volunteer arm of our local swing dance community. Through the SSRC, we visit senior homes, children hospitals, and entertain and dance at street fairs. The purpose of the club is to do some good deeds and promote the fun of swing dancing.

Anyone can join the club. The events are varied, and purely volunteer in nature. You'll get a notice through the SSRC Yahoo Group website of upcoming events, and you can chose which one(s) you'd like to attend.

JOIN NOW! -- click SWING SHIFT RHYTHM CLUB -- send your first and last name and email address.

If you wish to exit this list, visit: