I can’t quite describe how it feels, but for some reason, it feels like I’m living in the last century, the late 1950s to be precise. I’m referring only to tonight, not to my life in general. But tonight is very definitely a mid-century night.
Maybe it’s the slow, cool jazz I hear on the local NPR station when I enter my little lair, the office/store room/work room off the garage. I’ve taken to leaving the radio on, even when I’m not here, because I like to hear it as I open the door to my retreat. The jazz I hear tonight evokes a small nightclub, a place in which it’s possible to experience privacy in the midst of a room full of strangers.
Maybe it’s the odor of incense that I lit a few hours ago, still lingering here in my private retreat. But the jazz must have something to do with it. And now, as I hear an instrumental rendition of Girl from Ipanema, it is obvious; the music defines the mood.
And then, the DJ starts discussing what I’ve just heard; Kenny Barron; Ben Riley; Thelonious Monk; James Williams; Stan Getz at Chappaqua; Don Braden; Danny Gottlieb on drums. If I had a hammock, I could listen to this stuff as I drift off to sleep on the screened in porch.
So, the fact that I’m in my little lair must not be relevant, huh? Not if I could experience nirvana in a hammock on the porch. But the incense…that must have some role, don’t you think?
Let me be clear. I am not a jazz aficionado. I like jazz, but I don’t know much about it. Sometimes, though, only jazz allows me to be calm and serene and able to shuck off the troubles of the day. But, then, jazz can be annoying as hell, especially saxophone. But most of the time, sax is good.
Tonight, after having watched 24 (the latest incarnation) on television with my wife, the quietude of mid-century jazz was what I needed to unwind. That, and a stiff bourbon and coke (I know, I have no class, but at least I admit it).
Tonight, I feel like I’m living in the last century. And I like it.