Not too long ago, at a celebratory event, I found myself dancing with my young adult daughter. Afterward, as I was receiving oxygen, my daughter said she wanted to tell me something.

She prefaced her remarks by noting, “I mean this in the nicest way possible,” and then added, “but you are the worst dancer I’ve ever seen.”

I took it as a compliment.

For once, I was the best at something musical, even if it was at being worst.

And in fact, I was not surprised. I have known for some time that I have absolutely no skills related in any way to music.

Instead of receiving piano lessons as a child, I got tap dancing lessons. Do you know how difficult it is dancing to a bugle playing “Taps”?

In elementary school, when the class sang “God Bless America,” I was told I was a “listener.” Then I was told I was listening off-key.

(In the shower, however, I think I sound terrific when I launch into the romantic ballad, “Surfin’ Bird,” by the Trashmen, and its haunting chorus, “Everybody’s Heard About the Bird, Bird, Bird, Bird.”) .

Once, during college, I tried to teach myself to play the guitar. After four years or so of practice, I discovered I was holding the guitar at the wrong end and blowing into it.

I did, however, always believe I could dance, at least dance in the modern rock-and-roll style. Which means, of course, not really dancing at all.

What’s there to it, after all? You get up on the dance floor, you shuffle your feet around a little, making sure you’ve taken the taps off the shoes. Then you move your arms a bit up and down like you’re driving a bumper car at the amusement park.

You try not to bump into people, particularly if they are wearing high heels and want revenge.

You bob your head, you jiggle your shoulders, you wiggle your hips and you put a casual, relaxed look on your face like you couldn’t care less even though you care so much you’ve been practicing all these movements since you were 12.

Then, after two minutes and thirty seconds, you’re done, ready for the oxygen.

But ever since I had that little conversation with my daughter, I have been reluctant to get back on the dance floor and wiggle and jiggle. I have been, I guess, a little self-conscious and not willing to risk my title as worst dancer ever.

Then, last week, I did it. My friend Peter’s band was playing and other people were dancing. Many of them looked old enough to remember the Trashmen.

I applied my couldn’t-care-less-look to my face and began wiggling and jiggling. I moved to the music and bopped to the beat. All around the dance floor, people gathered to watch and to urge me to try taking up the guitar again.

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