Clogging, baby.

I’ve got to be honest, this Blogathon is kicking my ass. So tonight, instead yammering y’alls ears off, I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce you to a favorite hobby of mine. You may have seen me mention it in the past (if you’ve been around a while) and, if you know me in person, you’ve certainly heard me talk about quite a bit.

Clogging.

Lots of people think that clogging is this:

And so when I say, “I’m a clogger,” I get the raised eyebrow “Whaaaaaaaaa?” face. And it’s not even that there’s anything wrong with ol’ fashioned Appalachian-style clogging, it’s just that I am so clearly not the petticoats and bluegrass type. Thing is, a lot of people don’t realize exactly what clogging is, aside from fiddles and poverty. So let me tell you.

Clogging is hella cool.

There’s even a good chance you’ve seen clogging, and you may not have even realized what it was. Remember these guys from America’s Got Talent last year?

Cloggers.

In fact, two years ago I took a “hip hop clogging” class with one of those guys. His name is Joel. He is a totally kick ass dancer and taught us a killer Ke$ha routine.

I punched my own glasses off of my face.

I am possibly not built for hip hop.

But check out what Joel can make his feet do. Just to set context, this is considered one step. It’s called the velociraptor. I assume that this is because at least one person died in the making of this step.

Like how he said, “Alright, let’s give it a try,” at the end, like it was nothing? The same way I’d say, “Alright, let’s try that delicious-looking ice cream cone,” or “Alright, let’s all take a nap.” That’s how he said it. About this step called the velociraptor that I will surely not learn until I’m 80, and even then it will only be because I can support myself on my walker. He’s funny.

But these fellas aren’t alone in the world of clogging. In fact, this is what clogging is increasingly looking like these days:

And this routine, which KILLS me on the videography because you can’t hear their feet while the music is playing (OMG, videographer, sound check when at a clogging competition!), but is seriously fantastic anyway:

And what you really have to understand is that it’s not just about the modern music selections or edgy choreography… Underneath all of that, there is skill, serious skill. Like this, which is set to folk music (and is technically Canadian step dancing, a very close cousin to clogging), but gives you a good look at exactly what is going on in the feet of the best cloggers out there:

Clogging. So much cooler than you think.