2006, $1.99 (in the original shrink wrapper!, at Salvation Army in Pasadena

First Impression: This is how you hoo-mans stand.

Second Impression: I am like you, hoo-man!

Uh-oh. It’s a FIRM workout, which means that it’s led by androids freshly turned out of the robot cotillion. I’m hoping that this DVD is slightly less intimidating than the dance class I took at the Y which was taught by Darcel, a former Solid Gold Dancer.

We warm up in a sequence of head rolls, shoulder rolls, and hip rolls. If you think I’m going to make a post-Thanksgiving joke about Pillsbury Crescent Rolls, you have another think coming. Pillsbury Crescent Rolls are no laughing matter. They are simply delicious.

Now the instructor-bot is programmed to exclaim, “Let’s get funky!” It is a truth universally acknowledged, that the first person who suggests getting funky must be the least funky person in the room. And so it goes. 

By “funky” she means modified cheerleader moves, and I’m not mad at it, because I can actually follow along:

‘We’re gonna take this to da club,” she announces. One of the backup dancers rolls her eyes. Maybe that one is a hoo-man after all.

We do a fun little move where you swing your leg back, then bring up your knee with a hop. Then you clap, pump your elbows, and dust off your shoulders. Bring it on! That’ll show ‘em at regionals!

My favorite thing on any exercise DVD ever, is Push Away Arms. This is how I respond when people try to talk to me at the Laundromat:

After each section of choreography, the dance-bots return their arms to their sides with military precision. Then their punchcard selects another style, the servos whir, and we start over.

The Disco section has the most fascinating moves, and I quote, “I’m about to teach you a new move called a Speedball.” Okay, now it’s a party!

Turns out, it’s just doing a speed bag with your arms while shaking your hips. A lot less exciting, and probably better for you, than mixing your uppers and your downers.

We finish up with some Barbie walking:

What could be more casual and natural?

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