Today I went to my first "Jazz jam". It's not a style I play much (or particularly well) and I realized the only way I'm going to really get better (and inspired to play it more) is to get into a situation where I have to play. It was a good time. I certainly didn't blow anyone away, but then, I didn't expect to. One thing that surprised me was how many singers were there - there was a singer change every 2 songs or so, but I could have played bass as long as I wanted. I played 6 or 8 songs, none of them songs that I knew. Jazz ballads, swing of different tempos, and a couple of latin tunes. The main thing that I realized is that I need to get better at reading through charts - I missed some repeats and got lost a couple of times, though I was able to find my way back by listening, and nobody seemed upset. That's not to say that I don't need to work on other things - but that "not getting lost or bamboozled" is the first and greatest area of improvement. The singers were appreciative and the and other musicians made it clear that I'd be welcome back, and invited me to the "better jam" that happens on another night. That's a win in my book, and I'll be back.