The dwindling days of summer! This morning it is actually chilly. There is this chilly breeze coming in through the windows of our home office. My Uncle Bob used to say you could expect that this time of year. He would say, "Oh, you get cold days in August."
Yesterday my friend Gary and I were talking about how fast the summer had flown. "But think of what we can look forward to in the fall, Gary," I said. "Think of all the cooking and eating and wine making we will do." Gary and I make wine together. That is, I pitch in for the juice, at that big Italian place out near the Clinton-Bailey Market. James Desiderio's -- the name just came to me. Then I sit around and watch Gary make the wine. He is a pro. Last year we made this killer Barbera.
Lastnight I put a beautiful summer night to good use by going to the Elmwood Lounge. My friend Jane went with me and we had a glass of wine outside on the sidewalk. Lance Diamond sat with us. How great is that? Note to out-of-towners: Lance Diamond is the legendary crooner at the Elmwood Lounge. He sings "Unforgettable" and gives roses to the ladies. He was also my adversary in the recent Cheese Building Competition at the Italian Festival.
Anyway, Lance and Jane and I sat on Elmwood and watched the world go by. Well, we watched Eric the jewelry guy go by. That is almost just as good. Eric is this hippie who wanders Buffalo and sells jewelry on the street. Once, Jane saw this other girl we know kissing him. I mean really kissing him, after a night out on the town and no sleep. This is a beautiful girl, too. Howard thinks she is one of the sexiest women in Buffalo. She must have been really hung over and out of it, making out with Eric the jewelry guy in the bright morning sun, for all the world to see.
We hashed over that story lastnight. We had done so before and we will do so again.
Then we went inside and listened to Sam Noto and Don Menza and Louie Marino -- all the giants of Italian Buffalo jazz. Sam Falzone was also in the audience and people were hoping he would play but he didn't. I guess he had to run.
I used to play in the UB Jazz Combo under the direction of Sam Falzone. I remember when I first met Leonard Pennario we were sitting around talking about stuff and he somehow got that out of me, that I used to play jazz piano. "Well, I tried to," I told him.
Pennario told me: "I'll bet you are a wonderful jazz pianist."
He was so nice to me.
Lastnight I was thinking it has been too long since I was out listening to jazz of a summer evening. I will have to try to do that again before summer ends and the season of cooking and wine making begins.