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3.8.04 In Search of Cool

Last night we decided on a change of pace. Instead of our usual early dinner-with-the-news, followed by a movie or HBO treat, we went out. And not just out for dinner. We went out for entertainment -- and late.

I am fascinated by hip-hop and the work of deejays. But I've never really seen live deejays at work -- not the kind who really use turntables and vinyl records. There are always some listed in the entertainment sections, but they tend not to start work till after 10 or 11 PM and work out of clubs in questionable neighborhoods with clientele who aren't necessarily turntable connoisseurs.

But last week our new entertainment tabloid reviewed a pair of deejays who do a Sunday night gig at a downtown coffee house, starting at 9 PM.  Kind of an open mic night. It sounded interesting. They mix instrumental beats, while rappers pass a microphone around in a freestyle circle.

We staved off our dinner till 7:30 and ate at Edibles, a trendy little bistro downtown -- you know, the kind with fusion food: cajun quesadillas and salmon ravioli and crabcakes with black bean salsa.

Then we meandered to Java's, where we had dessert and coffee. You know this place too: exposed brick, high ceilings, exposed ductwork, wooden tables and chairs, with a few couches. The patrons all looked like students: coffee on a Sunday night -- who else would they be? The Eastman School of Music is on the same block. But there were also kids referring to being "in 10th grade last year." Jim kept trying to spot "old people" -- someone over 30, someone with a little hair loss, a little paunch.

Unfortunately, our deejays had not shown up by 9:45 and we had just about finished solving the world's problems by then, so we headed back to the suburbs, enough cool for one night.

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The snow is back. A dusting. The pretty kind that sprinkles confectioner's sugar on all the trees to make the view through my window look like a Christmas card. The good part is that at 6:15 AM there was enough light to see it.

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