Dance and Romance



The entire student body of Thomas Edison High School was gathered around the bulletin board. Coiley and Sebastian were in the back of the crowd, trying to see what all the commotion was about. Sebastian started jumping to get a better view of the board.

"Any luck?" Coiley asked.

"I can't see a thing," Sebastian replied. He tapped the shoulder of the kid standing in front of him. "Hey, Joey, what's going on?"

"Of all people who should know," Joey said, rolling his eyes. "Coiley Collins, I can't believe you don't know about this."

"Don't know about what?" Coiley asked.

"It's only the biggest buzz around town," a girl named Sydney said. "And he doesn't know about it."

"Know about what?!" Coiley shouted, getting rather impatient.

"The dance at the community center," Sydney said.

"Why would I know about that?" Coiley asked, confused.

"Well, the Geator with the Heater is hosting a dance contest there," Joey replied. "And you've done stuff with the Geator, right?"

"Believe me, guys, this is the first I've heard about this," Coiley said. "But I probably would have found out sooner or later."

Sebastian shrugged. The bell rang just then, and the entire student body went to their classes. Once school was over, Coiley and Sebastian headed towards Carson High School, where their friends would know more about this dance than they would. They ran into Erin and Linda first.

"Hey, what do you girls know about a dance contest?" Sebastian asked.

"Oh, it's just some thing the community center people came up with," Linda said. "They don't think there's too much interaction among high schoolers anymore. It's mainly for us high schoolers, but whoever wants to come can come. They talked Jerry into hosting this dance contest."

"Yeah?" Coiley asked.

"Oh yeah. He gave me all the details this morning. Whoever wants to enter can enter, but all entries have to be a couple, and they have to be boy-girl."

"Isn't that always the way?"

"Oh come off it," Sebastian said. "You know you're gonna ask Aimee."

Aimee Armbruster was a girl at Carson High School that Coiley had a crush on, and it was a huge crush.

"I don't know," Coiley said, shrugging. "She doesn't seem like the type who'll want to enter a dance contest."

"Well, here's your chance to find out," Erin said. "Here she comes now."

Coiley nearly choked. Aimee was walking out of the school followed by Shawn, Laurie, and Erin, and they were talking about the upcoming dance.

"I want Keith to enter the dance contest, but I haven't figured out how to convince him," Erin said.

"Maybe because he knows Bobby and I are gonna win it!" Laurie shouted, talking about her date, Bobby Anderson.

"Get real, Laurie," Shawn said. "Multi and I are gonna mop the floor with you!"

"Come on, Shawn," Aimee said. "That's not very nice."

"Hi, Aimee," Sebastian said, in a singsong voice. Coiley nudged him in the ribs.

"Oh, hi, Sebastian," Aimee said. "Hi, Coiley. What are you two doing here?"

"We came to find out about the dance contest," Coiley said.

"Oh look at the time," Sebastian said looking at his watch. "It's my turn to baby-sit today. See ya around!"

"I've got to go myself," Linda said. "Come on, Erin. You wanted my help studying for that math test."

"Right," Erin said, and she and Linda walked off.

"I've got to work on my dance routine with Bobby," Laurie said, running off.

Pretty soon, The only two standing on the curb were Aimee and Coiley.

"Do you get the feeling they're trying to set us up?" Coiley asked. Aimee giggled.

"Exactly," she said. "So you've heard about the dance, huh?"

"Yeah. And the dance contest. We've got an inside scoop on all things Geator, only because Linda happens to be married to him."

"Yes, I know. So . . . . . were you thinking about asking anyone to the dance in particular?"

"Well, I was sort of, kind of thinking about entering the dance contest . . . . . . I mean, I'm not that great a dancer . . . ."

"Well, neither am I . . . . so . . . . . ."

Coiley was about to flat out ask Aimee to go with him to the dance, when Fluey came tearing down the sidewalk on his bicycle, and he stopped right in between them.

"Sorry, Aimee," he said. "Let me just cut in here for a sec. Hey Coiley, I'm glad you're here. I gotta talk."

"What's the matter?" Coiley asked, a little exasperated.

"He's in full scale panic," Multi said, walking over. "Mr. Teen Idol can't get a date for that dance."

"Hey!" Fluey shouted, swatting Multi in the shoulder. "I can get a date for the dance, thank you very much! It's just that I can't ask Marina to go with me, you know what I mean?"

"Oh yeah, I know what you mean," Coiley said.

Fluey's girlfriend, Marina, was a mermaid, and there was no way he could talk her into changing into a human for just one night for him. Besides, she was off in parts unknown with the rest of the mermaid colony, far away from LA.

"Fluey, I'll hook you up with a girl from Edison later," Coiley said. "I'm kind of in the middle of something now."

"Well, speed it up," Fluey said. "Uncle Peter told me this morning that we've got to go take some publicity pictures. And you know how Bob is about punctuality."

"I can see you're kind of busy," Aimee said. "How about I call you later, Coiley?"

"Yeah, okay," Coiley said. "See you later, Aimee."

Aimee walked off in one direction, and the boys went in another. Coiley was about ready to kill Fluey for this.

"Did I miss something here?" Fluey asked.

"Time to get your head back on land," Multi said. "You've been scuba diving too long, Fluey."

"Okay, what do you mean by that?" Fluey asked.

"I was trying to ask Aimee to the dance," Coiley said. "And I wanted to enter the dance contest with her, too, but I don't know if she digs rock and roll dancing like I do."

"Whoops," Fluey said. "Sorry about that. Really, Coiley. My mouth works better than my mind sometimes."

Coiley shrugged it off. The boys walked into the Screen Gems studio, five seconds late. Bob was about ready to blow a gasket.

"Where were you guys?!" he shouted.

"Bob, it's only five seconds," Sarah said. "You know there's that dance at the community center, and all the kids are gonna talk about it. Maybe they were trying to get dates for it."

"I would've been successful," Coiley said, glaring at Fluey. "If someone didn't interrupt!"

"I said I was sorry!" Fluey shouted.

"I don't want to hear excuses!" Bob yelled. "Let's just get this shoot done. I'm sure you guys have homework."

The boys groaned, and got to work posing for cameras for all the teen magazines. Elsewhere at the studio, Mike was in the corner, brushing up on some dance moves. Jerry was watching him, as if he were crazy.

"Well, what do you think?" he asked.

"You swing like a rusty gate," Jerry said.

"Oh yeah? Well, let's see you do better."

"Sure. Give me a dance, and I'll do it."

"Mashed Potato."

Jerry loosened up, and began doing the Mashed Potato. Mike nodded.

"Fly," he said.

So Jerry did the Fly next. Then Mike wanted him to do the Swim, the Jerk, the Locomotion, and the Twist.

"Convinced, Mike?" Jerry asked, as he was twisting.

"One more," Mike said. "Let's see you do the Freddy!"

"No way! The Freddy is the dumbest dance in the world!"

Mike laughed, and swatted Jerry in the shoulder. They talked about the dance contest a little more.

"I can't believe we're gettin' away with this," Mike said. "I figured a lot of us wouldn't be allowed to dance in this contest."

"I told the committee that it was the judge's decision who wins and not mine," Jerry said. "They told me that as long as I didn't play favorites, my friends could enter the contest. And I'm not gonna play favorites. Besides, most of the sign up sheet is you guys anyway."

"Well, sign me and Phyllis up."

"You've got a routine planned?"

"Yep."

"Did you talk to her about it?"

"Oh yeah."

"Okay then."

Jerry handed Mike the clipboard, and he signed him and Phyllis up for the contest. He got a look at all the other contestants and their songs.

"Ken Mills entered?" he asked. "Multi's father Ken Mills?"

"Yeah," Jerry said. "He told me that he and Barbara were Mashed Potato masters."

"I'll believe it when I see it."

Mike shook his head, and handed the clipboard back to Jerry. Within a week, everyone was getting together for the dance contest. Jerry kept the sign up sheet with him at all times, just in case someone got sneaky and tried to sign up without a date, like Eddie Mannheim was doing.

"Come on, Jerry!" he shouted.

"I'm only gonna let you in the contest if you have a date," Jerry replied.

"But all the girls I know hooked up with someone else!"

"That's not my problem. And you can't show up with a dummy and say it's a girl."

"Darn!"

Jerry shook his head, and headed for Thomas Edison High School to drum up publicity for the dance, and to see if anyone was interested in the dance contest. Surprisingly, not too many kids were interested in the dance contest. He ran across Coiley and Sebastian walking down the hall.

"Hey guys," he said. "Care to sign up?"

"No thanks," Sebastian said. "I've got two left feet."

"Last time he was at a dance, he stepped all over his date's feet," Coiley said. "He vowed never to go to a school dance again!"

"So what about you, Coiley?" Jerry asked. "Interested in the contest?"

"Sure, but I haven't found a date yet," Coiley replied.

"He's trying to ask Aimee Armbruster, but somehow, he can't bring himself to do it," Sebastian said.

"You've known Aimee longer than I have, Jerry," Coiley said. "Would she go for the rock and roll type of person?"

"Well . . . . ." Jerry said, thinking it over. "I'm not really sure what her tastes in music are, to tell you the truth. I know she's smart and studious, though."

"Those types are never into rock and roll," Sebastian said. "Actually, Coiley, now that I think about it, I think you'd be better off with a girl from our own school."

Jerry shrugged. The bell rang, and Sebastian and Coiley walked off. Jerry picked up his clipboard and left for Carson High, trying to get the kids there to sign up. So far, only Multi, Shawn, Keith, and Erin had entered the contest. He sat at a table during lunch and tried to get the kids interested in the whole thing.

"Sign me up!" Laurie shouted. "Bobby and I are ready for this!"

"You got it, Laurie," Jerry said, handing Laurie a pen. "Hey, Fluey, what have you got to lose?"

"I'd like to," Fluey said. "But I need to find a date first. I don't really want to jump into this contest just in case I can't find a date."

"Why don't you just ask your girlfriend?" Erin asked.

"Well, she's out of town," Fluey said. "Besides, I can't think of a routine. Yet."

Jerry nodded. He assured Fluey he had plenty of time to think of a routine. The dance wasn't for a couple of weeks yet. That afternoon, Multi and Shawn went to practice their routine. They invited Coiley and Fluey to watch, maybe get some pointers for their moves. They walked inside, and saw Multi's dad, Ken, and his girlfriend, Barbara, dancing to Dee Dee Sharp's "Mashed Potato Time." Multi wanted to disappear.

"Aw, Dad!" he shouted. "You're not gonna do that at the contest are you?"

"What's wrong with it?" Ken asked, not even breaking his concentration. "You know I was the Mashed Potato champ back in the good ol' days!"

"And what about me, hot shot?" Barbara asked. "I'm good at this too!"

"Dad, can Shawn and I use the space please?" Multi asked. "We've got our own routine to rehearse."

"Oh sure," Ken said. "I need a break anyway. So fellas, have you guys found dates yet?"

"Not yet," Fluey said. "But I'm still looking."

"Same here," Coiley said.

Ken and Barbara nodded, and got out of their "practice area," surrendering it to Multi and Shawn. They found Martha and the Vandellas' "Quicksand" in Ken's pile of records, and put it on the record player, trying to work the kinks out of their act. As they were practicing, Fluey turned to Coiley.

"I think I have an idea," he said. "Why don't we get Carson's directory, and Edison's directory, and call up all the girls we know?"

"You can get a date that way," Coiley said. "I'm still trying to work up the nerve to ask Aimee. But I don't think she'll go with me."

"Why not? She likes you. And I've seen you two go to the movies and out for burgers and things like that."

"Yeah, but is she the type to enter a rock and roll contest?"

"Well . . . . Aimee doesn't strike me as the type to be into rock and roll, but it wouldn't hurt to ask her."

Coiley shrugged. The group continued to watch Multi and Shawn practice. Once they were through, Fluey went through Ken's records, and pulled out the follow up to "Mashed Potato Time," a song called "Gravy."

"I noticed Dee Dee Sharp had a thing for mashed potatoes," he said.

"Well, that song's perfect for you, Fluey," Ken said. "Think you could work up a routine?"

"If I find a partner," Fluey said. "Mind of I borrow the record?"

"Sure, go ahead," Ken replied.

So now Fluey had a song, but no partner. He'd have to talk a girl into doing the song. The next day was Saturday. Mike and Phyllis were working on their routine to complete silence. Mike didn't happen to own a copy of the song he wanted to dance to. Sabrina, who dropped in for the dance contest, was watching them.

"I'm so surprised you entered this thing," she said.

"What makes you say that?" Mike asked. He made a turn, lost his balance, and fell flat on his seat. "Whoa!"

"That's what makes me say that," Sabrina said.

"Yeah, Mike," Phyllis said, pulling her husband to his feet. "You're not terribly coordinated."

"Well," Mike said, shrugging. He and Phyllis went back to their routine. They were going to need all the practice they could get.

As they were working, Fluey and Coiley came walking down the street, talking about their favorite subject: girls.

"If I could get hold of Marina, I could probably convince her to do this," Fluey said. "At least just for that contest."

"I know," Coiley said. "Unfortunately, all the girls at your school and my school know you've got a girlfriend, and they don't want to come between you."

"I know, but it's frustrating!"

"Tell me about it. I have another problem besides worrying whether or not Aimee's gonna go with me to the dance or not. You know Carson and Edison are rivals. The kids really don't like the fact that we're friends and all. What happens if I go out to this dance with Aimee?"

"Those are jocks mostly. I've been out with a few girls from Edison, and only jocks and cheerleaders get on my case. And don't worry so much about Aimee! I'm sure she'd be willing to enter the dance contest!"

"What are you two talkin' about?" Mike asked, walking over.

"The dance contest," Fluey said. "I can't find a date, and Coiley's working up the nerve to ask Aimee."

"You'd be better off with someone from Edison," Mike said. "Aimee isn't too much into rock music."

"I was afraid of that," Coiley said.

"We're going over to Coiley's house and checking out the Edison High directory," Fluey said. "As well as Carson's."

"Well, I hope you guys at least have somethin' planned," Mike said.

"I've got a song, but no routine," Fluey said.

"Maybe I can help you out with that," Sabrina said. "I couldn't bring my boyfriend for this contest, and I'm dying to enter."

Fluey agreed, and he, Coiley, and Sabrina walked over to Coiley's house. The only person home was Coiley's older sister, Reine, and she was sitting at the kitchen table, studying.

"Reine, you mind if we play some records?" Coiley asked.

"That stupid contest, huh?" Reine asked. "Sure, go ahead. I'll just go up to my room."

"Thanks."

Reine gathered her books and stuff and went upstairs. Coiley dragged out his parents' old record player and plugged it in. He took the record and put it on the player.

"So what did you have in mind, Sabrina?" Fluey asked, as he put the needle on the record.

"Just follow my lead," Sabrina said, and she started to do some of the Mashed Potato, or what she's seen from when Mike had attempted to do the dance. Fluey shrugged, and followed her lead.

"Hey, this isn't bad," he said, adding a slight twist to the routine.

Pretty soon, he and Sabrina had a dance routine going. Coiley was applauding once the song was over.

"Pretty good," he said.

"Yeah, thanks," Fluey said, running his hand through his hair. Then he came up with an idea. "Hey, Sabrina, I just had a thought."

"What's that?" Sabrina asked.

"Well, since your boyfriend can't make it, and my girlfriend can't make it, why don't you and I enter the contest? I'm having a heck of a time trying to find a date, and you really want to enter the contest yourself."

"Yeah, okay. Sure."

"Now that just leaves one problem."

"What's that?"

"Getting me a date," Coiley said, pulling out Edison's directory. Fluey did the same with Carson's.

"Well, man, let's get it started," Fluey said, and he and Coiley opened the directories and the same time.

"What about Erica Addison?" Fluey said, looking in the Carson directory.

"Try calling her," Coiley said. Fluey picked up the phone and dialed the number.

"Hi, Erica?" he asked. "This is Fluey McAlister. Yeah, I know about the dance. Yeah, I've already got a date. But listen, a friend of mine doesn't and he's interested in the contest. . . . . . oh. Okay, bye."

"What did she say?" Sabrina asked.

"She said she'd go with Coiley, but she doesn't want to enter the contest," Fluey said. "Well, let's keep going."

For two hours, Coiley, Fluey, and Sabrina went through both high school directories, but most of the girls either already had dates, or didn't want to go to the dance in the first place.

"Look, why don't you just ask Aimee?" Sabrina asked.

"Because she's not gonna go for a rock and roll contest," Coiley protested.

"Why not?" Fluey asked. "I've seen her listen to rock and roll and dance to it before!"

"Well . . . ." Coiley shrugged. Fluey felt like smacking him upside the head.

"Ask her already!" he groaned.

"Okay, okay, I'll ask her," Coiley said, and he picked up the phone. He dialed Aimee's number and waited. It rang about five times before someone picked it up.

"Hello, Aimee?" Coiley asked. "Oh. Hi, Mrs. Armbruster. Is Aimee there? No, huh? The library? Okay, thanks."

"Well?" Fluey asked.

"Her mother," Coiley groaned. "She said Aimee was at the library. And there are like ten in the city."

"Why didn't you ask which one?"

"Her mom might not have known."

"Oh for crying out . . . . . Coiley, you're driving me nuts!"

"I'll just wait until tomorrow. And I hate to break this to you, Fluey, but you are nuts."

Fluey let that remark slide. He just shook his head, and he and Sabrina went to go work on their dance routine. Monday rolled around. The dance contest was that Saturday. The minute school let out, Coiley went down to the community center to see what was going on. Jerry and Linda were going through the sign up sheet.

"I hope you have all these songs, Jerry," Linda said.

"That's like asking a bird if it has wings," Coiley commented.

"You said it, my man," Jerry said. "What brings you down here?"

"I just wanted your advice Jerry, since you're the girl magnet."

"Well, ahhh, I'm not exactly a girl magnet anymore . . . . . so you might want to ask Davy about girls."

"Yeah, but you don't have that 'million dollah 'ead' ego Davy has."

"What do you need to know?"

"How do you ask a girl out?"

"Anyone I know?"

"Aimee Armbruster."

"Aimee Armbruster. Well, with her, I'd just walk up and ask her."

"But what if she doesn't dig the whole rock and roll scene?"

"She likes you, doesn't she?"

"I think so."

"Then you shouldn't have a problem. I'll admit, I don't know Aimee all that well, but I think she'd go for a rock and roll dance contest."

"I guess . . . . . maybe . . . . . . hey Linda, are you allowed in this contest?"

"I am," Linda said. "But I don't want to. I can only dance with Jerry, anyway."

Coiley nodded, and left. Jerry shrugged, and he and Linda continued to go over the list of contest applicants and songs. Coiley then walked over to Aimee's apartment building and knocked on the door. She answered it.

"Hi, Coiley," she said.

"Hi, Aimee," Coiley said. "Uhh, you . . . . . you doing anything Saturday night?"

"Well, I was thinking about going to that dance at the community center."

"Oh. Uhh, anybody ask you to that?"

"Well, as a matter of fact, yes. See, this boy in my social studies class asked me if I wanted to go and . . . . ."

"Oh. Okay. Uhh, I'll see you later, Aimee."

"But Coiley, wait a minute!"

Too late. Coiley was long gone before Aimee could explain that she hadn't said yes to the boy who asked her out. He went down to Screen Gems. Fluey was hanging out, working on some of his dance moves, along with Peter.

"I hope you're not trying to steal my moves," Fluey said.

"Would I do something like that to my favorite nephew?" Peter asked. "You know me better than that, Fluid."

"It's just as well. Sabrina and I are gonna kick your butt at the contest."

"We'll see who's butt gets kicked. Valerie and I are gonna dance circles around you."

"You wish."

"Uhh, Fluey?" Coiley asked. "Mind if I interrupt?"

"Go ahead," Peter said. "I can't keep up with this kid."

"So did you finally ask Aimee to the dance?" Fluey asked, turning off his music.

"Well, I tried."

"Oh no, don't tell me. Let me guess. You choked."

"No. She's going with someone from Carson."

"She is? She didn't say anything about that to me. So what are you gonna do now?"

"Probably go stag to the dance. I don't know what else to do."

"But you won't be able to enter the contest."

"Oh well."

Coiley walked off. Fluey decided to talk to Aimee first chance he got, which wasn't going to be easy. He had a full schedule ahead of him between now and the dance. Saturday rolled around. Nearly all of Los Angeles was at the community center ready for the dance contest. They were dying to see how it was going to go. Eddie was still trying to get into the competition.

"Come on, Jerry!" he shouted. "Let me into the contest!"

"It's gonna start in two minutes!" Jerry shouted. "Can you find a partner and song?"

"I've got a great song," Eddie handed Jerry a CD. "I'm not gonna need a partner for it, either!"

"The Macarena? Nice try, Eddie. Do not pass Go, do not collect two hundred dollars. Now if you don't mind, I'm on."

Eddie snapped his fingers. He was about ready to scream at this point. In any rate, the kids from Carson and Edison were scattered around, except for Fluey, Multi, and their usual group. They were hovered by the refreshment table.

"Who's she going with?" Shawn asked.

"Some kid from her social studies class she said," Coiley said.

"She didn't say anything to any of us," Erin replied.

"Well," Coiley just shrugged. The lights dimmed suddenly, and a spotlight went up on the bandstand.

"All right everybody!" Jerry shouted. "The moment we've all been waiting for has arrived! It's time for the dance contest!"

Everyone in the room began applauding and screaming. Jerry waited until they calmed down a little.

"The judges will determine the winner by the Applause-O-Meter," Jerry said, indicating some kind of contraption in the corner. Linda, acting like Vanna White, showed it off.

"Now, as I sometimes say on my radio show," Jerry continued. "Sixty seconds make one minute, sixty minutes make one hour, twenty-four hours make up one day, and out of that twenty-four hours, well, who knows how many songs we'll be able to pull in this contest, dedicated to the hippest show on the radio, so without further 'do, let's carry on through! Our first competitors, Quacky Quackerstein and Camille Chameleon, dancing to the Miracles 'Whole Lot of Shaking in My Heart'. Hit it!"

The song started, and the spotlight was on Quacky and Camille, dancing their routine. They had been practicing since they heard about the dance contest.

"They're not bad," Bob said.

"For amatures," Eddie shrugged.

Once the song was over, everyone in the room applauded. Eddie made a couple of half hearted claps once they were finished.

"Okay," Jerry said. "Next up, and I'll believe it when I see it, Hank and Christine Stanley, to the Four Tops' 'Can't Help Myself'."

"Oh no," Linda groaned, as the song started, and her parents walked out onto the dance floor to dance their routine.

"Now I've seen everythin'," Mike said, with a laugh.

As it turned out, Hank and Christine were pretty good, but Linda didn't notice. She didn't care that her parents might win this thing. She just felt too embarrassed that they were out there doing the strangest dancing imaginable.

"I didn't know Cap knew how to dance," Ned said.

"Yeah," Paul said. "Hey, Cap! Way to boogie!"

"Thanks, Dunbar," Hank said, once the song was over. "I think."

"Next up," Jerry said. "You may have seen him in many a movie from yesterday, and heard his voice on the radio, the Mashed Potato Master, Ken Mills, and the very lovely Barbara Daniels, performing to 'Mashed Potato Time,' by none other than Dee Dee Sharp!"

Ken and Barbara went out, doing the Mashed Potato. A lot of people whistled at them as they danced.

"Go, Dad!" Multi cheered.

"All right, Mr. Mills!" Linda shouted.

"Not bad, not bad," Eddie said. "But the Mashed Potato is a cakewalk."

"What's a cakewalk?" Quacky asked.

"Search me," Drake replied.

The song was over a few moments later. Ken and Barbara walked off the dance floor. Ken smacked Eddie in the back of the head, and walked for the punch bowl. Jerry bit his lower lip to keep from laughing.

"Moving right along," he said. "Back to another Smokey Robinson and the Miracles song, 'Mickey's Monkey' and I should spell it M-O-N-K-E-E because it's gonna be danced by the talented Micky Dolenz, and his lady, Samantha Juste!"

Micky and Samantha began dancing to the song "Mickey's Monkey" (or as your author likes to spell it, "Micky's Monkee"). Micky's dancing was like a comedy routine.

"What's he doing?" Eddie asked. "His impression of Fred Astaire's impression of James Cagney?"

"You dirty rat!" Micky shouted, giving Eddie a dirty look as the song was winding down. Everyone applauded.

"Coming up," Jerry said, "Bobby Day's 'Rockin' Robin'. Danced by Drake Mallard, and Judy Dell."

Drake and Judy (who was Screen Gem's make-up lady) ran out onto the dance floor, and began rockin'.

"Go, Dad, go!" Gosalyn shouted, clapping her hands.

"He's all right," Eddie said.

"You're just sore 'cause you can't dance," Bob said.

"Well, neither can you."

Bob ignored the remark and began applauding Drake and Judy when their song was over.

"Our next contestants," Jerry said. "Part of the younger generation. You saw his dad do the Mashed Potato, so now welcome Multi Mills, and Shawn Smith, dancing to Martha and the Vandellas' 'Quicksand'!"

The song started, and Multi and Shawn began dancing. They were a big hit with the high school crowd.

"He takes after his father," Barbara commented.

"Sorry to hear that," Eddie said.

"You stay out of this," Ken replied, giving Eddie a glare. Multi and Shawn got a pretty good round of applause once they were finished.

"Coming up next," Jerry said. "The Isley Brothers' 'This Old Heart of Mine', featuring the stylings of Keith Partridge, and Erin James!"

Keith and Erin walked out onto the dance floor and worked to their music.

"I thought they were off this weekend," Fluey said.

"You know my brother," Laurie said. "On again off again. And I think they're on for this contest. Next weekend, they'll be off again."

Keith and Erin got a good applause going themselves once they were finished. Eddie gave another two half hearted claps. Jerry rolled his eyes.

"Bob, you gotta work on Eddie's manners," he said. "Moving right along, next up Peter Tork and Valerie Cartwright, with Dion's 'Runaround Sue'."

Fluey stuck two fingers in his mouth and whistled as loudly, and as shrilly as humanly possible. Of course, he was standing right next to Eddie.

"Hey, I value my hearing!" he shouted.

Fluey didn't say anything to the promotion man from Scree Gems. He continued cheering his aunt and uncle on. Davy was whistling as well.

"Atta way to dance, Petah!" he called out.

"Hey, Davy, how come you didn't enter the contest?" Jerry asked.

"I'm more of a Broadway dancah," Davy said, shrugging.

"Translation," Mike teased. "He couldn't find a date!"

Davy gave Mike a dirty look, and continued to cheer for Peter. Jerry clapped a little himself and went back to his list real quick.

"Okay, Mike," he said. "Enough teasing Davy, because you're up next. Here are Mike and Phyllis Nesmith, dancing to Tina Britt's 'The Real Thing'."

Mike and Phyllis went out on the dance floor, dancing up a storm. Eddie was a little suspicious however.

"Hey, Nesmith!" he shouted. "How do we know you didn't use magic to make yourself a better dancer?!"

Mike responded, by snapping his fingers and dropping a water bomb on Eddie's head. Everyone cracked up.

"No fair!" Eddie yelled.

Mike didn't say anything, he just continued dancing. He and Phyllis got a roaring applause when they were finished. Jerry applauded, and announced the next couple.

"Reggie Bushroot and Sarah Phoenix," he said. "Their song, 'Morse Code of Love' by the Capris."

Reggie, the dance master next to Camille and Jerry, pulled Sarah out onto the dance floor, and did his routine.

"I didn't know asthmatics could dance without sinking to their knees gasping for breath," Eddie said.

"Aw, shut up, Mannheim," Mike groaned.

"I'm just giving my two cents," Eddie said.

"Well, keep it to yourself, okay?" Micky said. He applauded wildly once Reggie and Sarah were finished.

"We're back to the younger generation," Jerry said. "Laurie Partridge, and her date, Bobby Anderson, to Little Eva's 'Locomotion'."

The classic song blared out from the speakers, and Laurie and Bobby began dancing to it.

"Not bad," Eddie said. "For amatures."

"Oh what do you know, Eddie?" Mike asked. "You've got two left feet, anyway."

"Okay, okay," Jerry said. "Enough with being catty. Next up, my favorite soldier, and nurse. Warren and Carole Nesmith, to the super Supremes' 'You Can't Hurry Love'!"

"Dad?" Mike asked, surprised.

"I didn't know your dad entered the contest," Peter replied.

"Apparently, neither did I," Mike said, shrugging.

"He moves better than your stepmother!" Eddie shouted. "And she's supposed to move better since she's younger!"

"Aw, shut up, Eddie," Mike growled. Then he began applauding and cheering. "All right, Dad!"

"Way to dance, Carole!" Phyllis shouted. Warren and Carole took a couple of bows and walked off the stage.

"We've seen the young generation," Jerry said. "Hey, hey, we saw the young generation with Micky Monkee. We saw the younger generation with the yon teens in the contest, and we've seen the older generation, but here's the older, older generation, to prove they can move as good as any yon teenager out there. Presenting Joe Early and Kate Nesmith, with 'Quarter to Three' by Gary US Bonds!"

"You know when I said I'd seen everythin' when Cap was dancin' out there?" Mike asked.

"Uh huh," Phyllis said.

"I take it back," Mike replied. "Now I've seen everythin'!"

As it turned out, Joe and Kate were pretty good. They actually surprised the entire group dancing to that particular song!

"He moves good for an old geezer," Eddie said. Both Mike and Bob nudged him in the ribs for that one, but it didn't stop Eddie.

"No, seriously," he said. "Although, he might need the Geritol in the morning."

"Why do you even keep him around?" Mike asked.

"I'm beginning to wonder that myself," Bob remarked.

Joe and Kate got a big ovation for their routine. Jerry laughed and picked up the microphone.

"Nice to know they can still move," he said. "All right, we're nearing the end. Here's our last contestants. Fluey Tork-McAlister and Sabrina Spellman, mashing the potatoes to Dee Dee Sharp's 'Gravy,' the follow up to 'Mashed Potato Time'. Kick it, kids!"

Fluey and Sabrina began to do their own version of the Mashed Potato, throwing in some of their own moves.

"Like uncle, like nephew," Eddie said. "Neither of you can dance."

"He's a good dancer," Peter said.

"Can we please kick him out!" Micky shouted.

"I'm warning you, Eddie," Jerry said. "Rudeness will not be tolerated here."

"Who's being rude?" Eddie asked. "I didn't do anything."

"Didn't do anythin' he says," Mike said. "Yeah right."

The song ended, and everyone clapped. The judges, who had been watching the Applause-O-Meter throughout the whole contest. They had to compare notes and talk before a winner was chosen. Jerry played a slower song so everybody could relax a little. As everyone scattered, Aimee walked over to Coiley.

"Can I talk to you?" she asked.

"Sure," Coiley said.

"I didn't get to finish what I was saying at my apartment the other day. I wanted to tell you that the boy from my class asked me, but I told him I already had a date."

"Who?"

"Well, I wanted to go with you."

"You did?"

"Yes. And I would have been glad to enter the contest with you, Coiley."

"Oh brother, am I an idiot, or what?"

"No, you're not an idiot, Coiley."

"You must think I'm pretty stupid, though."

"Not at all. I really like you, Coiley. I don't know why you would think I wouldn't enter the contest."

"Well, it's just that you're not really that into rock and roll. Well, it's too late now."

"No it isn't," Fluey said. "I've got a song for you to dance to, and I'm gonna go talk to Jerry right now."

Of course, at that moment, Jerry had just received the envelope from the judges.

"Okay, everybody, this is it!" he shouted. "Third place in our dance contest goes to . . . ."

"Hold it, hold it!" Fluey shouted. "Jerry, we've got a last minute entry."

"Fluey, I was just about to announce the winners," Jerry said.

"I know, but this is important."

"All right. Ladies and gentlemen, we're gonna hold off judging so we can let another young couple perform in our contest."

"No!" Eddie shouted. "You wouldn't let me in!"

"Don't be a sore loser, Eddie," Bob said.

"Besides, you didn't have a partner," Mike said.

"Here are Coiley Collins and Aimee Armbruster," Jerry said. "They'll be dancing to Theresa Lindsey's 'Gotta Find a Way'. Knock yourselves out, you guys."

Coiley and Aimee went out onto the dance floor, and danced. They didn't have anything planned, though. It was all an impromptu performance, one that got the crowd clapping like crazy. Micky, Fluey, and Mike were actually encouraging the crowd to clap. The Applause-O-Meter went off the scale at the act!

"Ladies and gentlemen!" Jerry shouted. "I don't think the judges need to confirm votes again! Coiley and Aimee have gone and stole the show!"

Everyone began to cheer like crazy. Jerry stepped off the bandstand and handed Coiley and Aimee the first place trophy.

"Great dancing, guys," he said. "But next time, don't cut it so close."

Coiley and Aimee laughed. The dance began to wind down then. It went on until eleven o' clock that night. Mike and Jerry walked out to the bike racks, talking about the contest.

"I had to give them first, Mike," Jerry said. "They were great. Third place isn't so bad."

"Yeah, I know," Mike said. "I'm not too sore about it. I can't believe it though. I thought I'd come in dead last."

"Yeah. Actually, I'm a little surprised at the outcome. If Coiley and Aimee didn't enter, Dr. Early and your aunt would've won."

"I'm just still surprised I came in third. I guess my dancin' must be gettin' better."

Jerry nodded. Mike began dancing a little, although he ended up losing his balance, and crashing into a bike, causing the rest of the bikes, and the rack to come crashing to the ground.

"Mike, are you all right?" Jerry asked.

"Then again," Mike said. "Maybe I'm just as uncoordinated as ever."

Both Jerry and Mike started laughing over that.

The End