Come, and trip it as you go
On the light fantastic toe
Painting by Robert Anning Bell.
This is going up early as I have a busy, out of control weekend ahead, and I want Mo to see this before he departs:
Mo, our Manic Monday creator and host, is about to take a trip in order to "Trip the light fantastic" in London. For those not familiar with this somewhat archaic phrase, it means to dance lightly and gracefully. This is appropriate for Mo since a version of this meaning of "trip" first appears in works by Shakespeare and Milton:
The Tempest, written in 1611:
Before you can say come, and go,
And breathe twice; and cry, so, so:
Each one tripping on his toe,
Will be here with mop, and mowe. (grimace)
In the poem L'Allegro by John Milton, published in 1645
Come, and trip it as ye go,
On the light fantastic toe.
And in thy right hand lead with thee,
The Mountain Nymph, sweet Liberty;
The phrase became popular to more modern ears with the song "Sidewalks of New York" in 1894.
East Side, West Side, all around the town
The tots sang "ring-a-rosie," "London Bridge is falling down"
Boys and girls together, me and Mamie O'Rourke
Tripped the light fantastic on the sidewalks of New York
From there trip did a complete alteration or variation to "Skipped the Light Fandango" possibly to make it clearer to modern ears that trip and skip were synonymous and "fantastic" was a dance similar to the "Fandango". So whether he trips or skips, let's hope that Mo's TRIP to London is absolutely FANTASTIC and as with the end of My Best Friend's Wedding: "Maybe there won't be marriage, maybe there won't be sex, but by God there will be dancing!"
For music I could have pulled up "Skip to my Lou", but this meme allows me to post two of my favorite songs with a flair for the Fandango:
Skip The Light Fandango with Procol Harem and A Whiter Shade of Pale
Trip The Light Fandango with Susan Terry singing "The Miller's Son" from Sondheim's "A Little Night Music"