Happy Birthday to J-Guar, who's No Longer a Teenager today. I've definitely had a great time hanging and jamming with him, and the whole thing is a bit of living proof that 1) the music world really is small, and 2) you can in fact meet people on the Internet who are very cool and quite normal when you get together in person.
The story goes like this: Sometime last October, I was reading through the comments on stereoboy.org (which is no longer in existence, but its author now posts here) when I noticed one that mentioned Denton, Texas. Since that's the home of my alma mater, I of course clicked the link, and was fascinated to find out that the site was written by a jazz studies major who lived in my old dorm. Of course it became a site that I visited frequently.
Here's one thing about the music world: It's really,.really small. Forget the "six degrees of separation" thing; in the music world, you probably only need two or three. (Incidentally, the original "Six Degrees of Separation" was written by someone whose name differs from J-Guar's by only one letter...weird.) So when J-Guar posted a story and picture about his old trumpet teacher from Minnesota coming to visit--and when said teacher turned out to be a fraternity brother and former combo-mate of mine--I felt compelled to post a comment. He would eventually post comments on here too, and the inevitable IM's followed.
Time went by, and we eventually got to meet up, and it's always been really cool. We've gotten together several times at Lab Band Night, and he even "escaped" Denton for a weekend for bowling/burritos/bebop with my group of friends last semester. Now that Halfling's at UNT, our paths have crossed even more. Considering some of the bad luck that other friends of mine have had about how people they've met on the Net don't turn out to be so great in real life, I feel really lucky, because the "de-fictionalization" (J-Guar's and my term for meeting people you've only heretofore read about on blogs) has turned out great in this case.
Oh, and even if J-Guar and I had never met in person, his place in the hall of fame would have been assured just for turning me onto this cool band via a posting on his old site last year. Check them out if you haven't yet...