Northgate have danced for decades now using swords with fixed handles on both ends. These were pretty much unique when we had the first set made, but seem to have caught on over the last few years. This is gratifying. Indeed, we have come to look down on those that use the more conventional rappers with one fixed handle and one rotating one (or, in technical talk, the spinny bit): these are easier to use, but give less control over the blade.
The construction of our swords means that there is no metal-on-flexing-metal join as there is on those that have the spinny bit. Instead, we have wood-on-flexing-metal, and we thought that this would remove one of the most annoying features of the “normal” rappers, which is stress fractures and the consequent breaking of the blades.
Two decades of dancing has backed up this “unbreakable” theory. However, last night one of our lads (let’s call him Dave) managed finally to break one of them! There was a long pause as we let the scene of devastation settle in, our faces carrying looks of horror mixed with disbelief. Finally the truth managed to work its way into our shocked minds and, as we stared as one at the broken blade, we muttered in unison a word of great power and wisdom and consolation to the soul in times of need: “Bugger.”