Of flash mobs, and friends



ABBA flash mob - Seattle
See that girl, watch that scene, digging the dancing queen Credit: The Seattle Times


Piper made me do it. I saw the “ABBA flash mob” post on Facebook and was mildly curious, but I would not have done this without Piper.

She called me a night or two before the rehearsal and said in her Piper way, “Mary G., you have to do this with me.” She said that she needed to do this, that her life was very full right now with a new baby, Noa, and also 2-year-old Demri. She said something about the need to do something fun and how she felt overwhelmed with life. My reaction? I told her that I thought she was too cool to do a flash mob.  “What?” she said. “I’m a big dork.” So, I was reminded of why we are friends and get along well.

So, dorks that we are, we met for the first rehearsal. Piper almost immediately was taken with Bobby, the choreographer, in the same way that I was initially struck by him. He’s funny and a great teacher and a fabulous dancer. Goofy, yet a little cerebral … and the making it fun part helps when you’re a volunteer dancer who is not really a dancer but who likes things like “Glee” and ABBA.

I met Taichi, or Tai, at the rehearsal, too. I recognized him from the Glee flash mob. Jessica and I had run into him (not literally) at Top Pot doughnuts … after the Westlake performance but on our way to Seattle Center. He had a few friends who were also flash mobbing, and he told me that he’s leaving Seattle soon to go to school in Georgia, so he’s taking advantage of all things Seattle (like the flash mob).

The first practice went well, though I could only stay for half of it (one hour). I found myself more annoyed with the somewhat strange people who show up for these gigs than Piper was. She was very amused by it all and enthusiastic. She’s a good dancer and she also found her theatrical self in the performance. You can see her in the picture above to the right of Bobby and in between the “00” in the 100 years of Swedish.

We missed the 2nd practice, but both of us rehearsed with the video over the weekend. We then hit Monday’s night final rehearsal at Century Ballroom. Piper brought Wayne, a neighbor from Orcas, who was curious about the whole flash mob thing. I thought he was going to dance with us but as soon as he saw the dance, he took a seat and decided to spectate at this one. I ended up hanging w/ the group until close to 9 p.m. (after a 6 o’clock start), since we did a site visit over to the Swedish Medical Center campus (where we performed Tuesday).

I can’t decide how flash mobs make me feel, exactly. They are definitely fun and make me happy.  I have always loved ABBA, dating back to one of the first 45s I purchased in 8th grade (“does your mother know”), … so it’s not the fun that I’m pondering.

Flash mobs in some way make me feel a little bit in the middle, and OK … shy. I’m not cool enough to be an “A” team member, though if I decided to be forceful, I could be (as was evident w/ this flash mob), yet I’m cooler than most of the people who are way into it, and ask questions that really aren’t necessary, but they’re just so into it that they can’t help themselves. OK, now I’m bordering on being a mean girl, but hopefully some of you are following this thread.

One of the things I realized through this flash mob experience, though, was that maybe I don’t know some of my friends as well as I thought that I did. It was really a minor revelation to hear Piper admit she is a dork and we are now tied forever to the historic flash mob, the Swedish anniversary, and some things ABBA. I’m glad that her dad got to see her, too. He looked so proud and happy after the dance, and that was sweet to see.


  1. Oi! Love reading your account of this glorious event. Hehe, sorry if I was the one asking too many questions. I think I asked about how to end on the roll spin move… and for a carpool. Excitement comes easily.

    We are a jolly lot of dorks — but the joy we get out of it is so exponentially abundant that it is worth it, I’d say.

    Your Gmail blog post made me laugh – out loud. Well written, Mary. I like your words.

    1. Maggie, hi. Omg. I don’t think you were the one asking questions. 🙂 I am not the most patient person and that is probably what came out that day in terms of my feelings.

      Thank you for appreciating the blog post and recap of the day’s events. The flash mobs are indeed fun. Cheers!

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