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A night of jazz

I listened to live jazz vocals last night.

I even dressed up and wore a tie for it. (Admittedly, my Star Trek tie.)

One of the people I rent from, meaning another resident of the house, takes a jazz vocals class, and last night was a showcase for the students. It was at Wilf's, the very old-school bar in downtown Portland's Union Station. Fancier place than I usually go to, though casual clothes are OK. Still, I erred on the side of caution and wore a nice button-down and the aforementioned Star Trek tie. Another guy who was at Wilf's was wearing a NASA T-shirt. I listened, and made sure to keep from being too demonstrative: I resisted drumming along, as I often do when I listen in private. I certainly didn't pretend to conduct, as I've sometimes done. You clap at apt moments; that's it.

Live jazz has not been a thing in my life. In the late ’90s when I lived in Hermiston, I listened to the Pullman, Washington NPR station and it had jazz programs. I knew I was missing aspects of the performances: audience members would clap after a nice solo, but of course I couldn't see that a player had finished a solo. Still, I could glean enough from the music to appreciate it.

I appreciated last night's performances. And I got to see a side of someone I know, a side I don't otherwise see or hear, beyond when the housemate practices.

(You may have guessed from my vague phrasing, but I'll spell it out: I rarely if ever blog about life at the house, because doing so without the permission of my two housemates is a little unfair. They have their lives, I have mine.)

The visit also made me want to return to Wilf's sometime. And to use Union Station: I've yet to ride the train from there. The most I've done was buy a round-trip ticket for my friend/former girlfriend Alicia to come up to Portland in 2005, so we could go see MirrorMask. But the train station with its amenities is there, and it's accessible. Why not get back to it?

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