I’m no dancer, as those who know me can attest, but I bet I’ve danced in front of more people than you have? How does 87 million people grab you?
As I’ve mentioned on the blog before, I was a band geek in high school. Our band was small, but it was a major factor in much of my social life with many friends and girlfriends being band members. My high school was in southern California and in the fall of 1986 some producers came to the high school.
In January of 1987, the Super Bowl was to be held at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. The show had been designed by Disney and featured such heavy hitters as Mickey Rooney, Goofy and the mouse himself, Mickey. But surrounding the main stage, they wanted to fill the entire field full of dancers. For one set (which included a good portion of four different songs), they needed males.
Finding a large quantity of female dancers that would do it for free was easy. Just look at every drill team, dance school and cheerleading squad, but for males? They went to marching bands. The producers figured that marching band boys would at least know their left foot from their right.
After school one day, I went to the band room and found a couple of adults with clip boards. They quickly showed a group of us some basic dance steps, gave us a minute or two to try them and then had us dance in front of them. That was it. That was the audition. We waited outside and they called us back in and let us know who was accepted.
For the next several months we would go to a regional site and learned our routine. In the show we were to be dressed as cowboys, complete with a whip and a horse (saw horse). The songs (Old Time Rock N Roll, Footloose, the theme from Raiders of the lost Ark) and a song from the Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. During the routine we would at various times dance around the saw horse, sometimes on top if it and would either crack the whip (during Raiders) or use the whip handle as a microphone (Old Time Rock N Roll).
The week prior to the Super Bowl we were bussed to the Rose Bowl and rehearsed with all the other dancers and other acts. Our routines were not tough and included fewer steps than a typical half-time show. We were ready.
On Super Bowl Sunday, we were bussed to an off-site location and dressed in our costumes (white pants, yellow tank top, white jacket, white hat and a pair of white Reebok high top sneakers (which we got to keep). As the first quarter ended, we boarded a bus and was driven to the stadium. We left the busses and entered the stadium through a tunnel. As the second quarter ended we were standing in the tunnel and the teams walked by us on their way to the locker rooms (including the immortal John Elway of the Denver Broncos).
The music started an on our cue we flooded the field with our horses. The routine just flew and soon we were off the field, back on the bus and shipped to a high school field near by. I didn’t get a close-up on TV, but could occasionally pick myself out of the crowd in the wide shots. That has been the extent of my dancing career.
Italian Country Chicken
Luckily my cooking career has gone on and on.
Your typical Italian ingredients.
Brown the chicken.
Saute the veggies.
A tasty dish!
Italian Country Chicken
Servings: 4 Servings
1 14.5 oz. Contadina® Diced Tomatoes with Italian Herbs
6 oz. Contadina® Tomato Paste
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 Tbsp. olive oil
8 oz. mushrooms quartered
1 sweet peppers green, cut into thin strips
1 celery stalk sliced
1. Season chicken lightly with salt and pepper, if desired. Brown chicken in hot oil in very large skillet about 10 minutes; turn occasionally. Remove chicken.
2. Cook and stir mushrooms, pepper and celery in same skillet until tender.
3. Stir in undrained tomatoes, tomato paste and 1 cup water; return chicken to skillet. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 30 to 45 minutes or until chicken is done. Serve over hot rice and garnish with celery, if desired.