Dang it All
Trials and Travails of a 20-something
Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Come down off that cross, we can use the wood.
- Tom Waits

Music playing right now: Laura Cantrell - The Whiskey Makes You Sweeter

Somebody really needs to do a cover of Tom Waits' classic "Come On Up to the House." Seems like it would be up Rufus Wainwrights alley. I was listening to it today and remembered how much I love that song. While we're waiting though, if you promise not to snitch to the RIAA, feel free to take a listen to the original.

Sunday, September 28, 2003

Words are but the signs of ideas.
- Samuel Johnson

Music playing right now: Brandtson - Strand

November is once again fast approaching. And with it, comes National Novel Writing Month. I'm considering once again tackling this goal. My efforts last year crashed and burned on about the 15th of the month. If I do it this year, I at least want to finish, no matter how crappy it is. Anybody want to do it with me?

I accomplished almost nothing this weekend. I watched my share of strange foreign films, including Audition(ever seen a pierced eyelid?) and Das Experiment, both good in their own ways. If you're in dire need of a mind trip, watch either one.

About the only productive thing I did all weekend was read all of the criticisms of the short story I submitted to my creative writing class. Most of them liked it, which is good. I just need to work on making my characters seem more real, my biggest problem in writing. I've been reading a collection of Dorothy Parker stories. She's incredibly good at making her characters come alive. I could use a bit of her talent. In the meantime though, I'll just press on and hope.

Saturday, September 27, 2003

Mental note to myself: Never become involved with a girl who has any type of flowered lei hanging from her rearview mirror.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

It's your life, decorate it as you like.
- Ben Folds

Music playing right now: KD Lang - The Joker

If by some miracle I became the guy who gets to name car paint colors, right now I'd go with listless gray, depression blue, lonely midnight, weary white, and fatigued fuschia.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

By working faithfully eight hours a day, you may get to be a boss and work twelve hours a day.
- Robert Frost

Music playing right now: Fiona Apple - The First Taste

At work we get a lot of TVs as trade-ins. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't. When they work or are easy to fix, we sell them used. When they're broken and beyond repair we sell them to Ed.

Ed is a large black guy of about 50. His hair is always slicked back and stuck to his head. I can imagine that if the Soul Glo from Coming to America actually existed, he would be their #1 customer. He owns a lot across town that is basically a permanent garage sale. He sells refrigerators, TVs, stereos, furniture, basically anything he can fit in there. Naturally, it's all as-is. He buys 7 or 8 broken TVs from us a month at $10 a pop, turns around and sells them for $20-$100. Not too bad. He just has to deal with the fact that all of his customers probably hate him. Still, gotta admire his entrepreneurial spirit.

I was supposed to write something about a social injustice for creative writing class. My social injustice? Stealing the last cookie. Oh yeah. I'm a protester. A veritable firebrand.

On the Thievery of Cookies

"Holy shit! What's that?"

I swung my head around to see what she was pointing at.

"Oh. Nevermind. Thought I saw something."

I returned to Will & Grace, shaking my head at her excitability. Cut to commercial and I reached for my oreo. I stared in disbelief at the empty plastic tray on the table. Miniscule black crumbs were the only residents. My gaze moved right and upward to her face. She shot me a triumphant grin, obscured a bit by the spots of soggy oreo still clinging to her teeth. I looked back at her with a look of supreme hurt.

"That's just not right."


"You took the last cookie. That was mine."

"I'm sorry, I didn't know there were rules for that sort of thing."

"It's just common decency. We were alternating. I took a cookie, you took a cookie. You took the penultimate one, so I get the last oreo."

"The penultimate one? What the hell is that? You just weren't paying attention. It's your own fault. If you want though, I'll let you lick the tray."

She shot me the same shiteating grin, obviously pleased with herself. I resolved not to let her get to me.

"Fuck you very much."


"You owe me a cookie."

"Shhh...it's back on."

"This is so not over."


"You're going down."

"Shut up!"



"I panicked."

"Sure did. Now shut up."

I shut up. The laugh track played in the background as I plotted my revenge.

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

I want to be a beatnik, but I don't own a beret.

Monday, September 22, 2003

All a writer has to do to get a woman is to say he's a writer. It's an aphrodisiac.
- Saul Bellow

Music playing right now: Soltero - I'll Be a Writer

I finally took the time to write tonight so I get to post a whole bunch of crap. Just one warning. It's not all autobiographical, so don't get too many ideas.


"What do you think of garlic?" She came up to me outside the mall, catching me off guard. My arms, laden down with the results of the days hunt, were unable to stop her invasion of my personal space. I dropped my Banana Republic and fished for some change.

She persisted in her question, swollen red gums pulling back to show three or four rotting teeth. "What do you think of garlic?" My hand closed on a handful of coins in my slacks and I dropped them in her cup, heard them clink against the other ones inside. I knelt to retrieve my bag.

Her hand closed on my arm as I stood. I could feel the bones underneath her yellowed parchment skin. She grasped me with the tenacity of one who has all the time in the world. "What do you think of garlic?" I shrank back instinctively and my newly-bought clothes fell back to the cement.

"It's ok I guess." Hoping this answer would pacify her, I once again picked up my Banana Republic and turned to leave, this time clutching the plastic a bit tighter so as not to lose my grip a third time. She moved surprisingly fast and blocked my path with her spare frame.

"What do you think of garlic?" Her face stared up at mine, a burnt brown mask with two eyes of burning charcoal. Feeling like a cornered fox, I started to get angry. Mad and becoming emboldened by the approach of a security guard in the distance, I told her the truth.

"Garlic? I hate garlic. I can't stand it anywhere near me. I hate the taste, I abhor the smell. It even looks ugly. I wish it didn't exist. Happy?"

She looked at me with sadness but no surprise. "That's what I thought."

The security guard lumbered up and eyed us both laconically. He put his hand on the woman's shoulder and she turned to face him. "Are you bothering customers again? You know you're not supposed to do that. You're going to have to move on." She meekly walked away, her shopping cart jingling before her as she went. The guard turned back to me. "Sorry about that sir."

I calmed myself down a bit. "Is she here often?"

"Who, Garlic? Yeah, all the time. I hope she didn't disturb you."

I stared at him a few moments and then walked away, holding my bags tight to my chest like a lifeline.

Ice on a starbucks floor

Stop, drop, and slide to avoid
the steam rising from open mouths.
The machines spew gusts
of coffee-flavored stink.

A puddle forms around the blocks,
the death knell rising.
Shoes avoid and ignore,
too busy looking for their mates.

Words fly too fast to notice
the decline of clear crystal.
Life moves too fast to mark
the delliquesce of beauty.

Friday, September 19, 2003

One of these days I want to go to Wal-mart and buy a bottle of lotion, a box of kleenex, and a copy of mary-kate and ashley's latest movie. I'm interested in how the checkout lady would respond.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Anybody want to join me at the Tallgrass Film Festival?

Anything that is too stupid to be spoken is sung.
- Voltaire

Music playing right now: Something by Nerfherder

My brother and I made a pilgrimage to the DAV thrift store today. He picked up a shirt and tape and I marveled at the amount of flannel they had on the racks. We popped in the tape on the drive home. My brother has this weird thing for Sylvester Stallone. He owns most of his movies and considers him a real actor. I, like most people, consider him to be on the same acting scale as Terry Bradshaw in 10-10-321 ads. Nevertheless, we suffered through the Rhinestone soundtrack.

Whatever small admiration I may have had for Sly dissipated very quickly after listening to his attempts at country crooning. Yes, you've got it right. Rambo singing his muscle-laden heart out. It was quite amusing. I think my favorite line was "I want to rock you, rock you like a cradle, baby." $0.65 well spent. Adios for now.

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Ambition is the last refuge of the failure.
- Oscar Wilde

Music playing right now: Eve6 - Girlfriend

I ran over a turtle on the way to class this morning. I saw it through my windshield as I changed lanes. I tried to avoid it but ended up hitting it dead on. A round speedbump going under my wheels. My rearview mirror showed it upside down. I couldn't tell if it was moving.

My life is going. I don't know if it's going well or not. Yesterday was a horrible day. Today was much better. Tomorrow can take care of itself.

I submitted one of my short stories to my creative writing class tonight. They're supposed to read it and tell me how to improve it next week. I'm scared. I want to get better, but I also want to get told that I'm wonderful and I don't need to change anything. Changes are coming however. The headlights are approaching. We'll see how I stand up. Adios for now.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

The Lament of Taz.

Have you seen me spin?
Let me show you.

It starts out slow,
Speeds up fast.
Arms stretched out wide,
Thick-skinned air-slicers.

I'm my own tornado,
A furry flying funnel.
Tongue racing after my body,
Tastes the speeding wind.

I spin away from danger,
Leaving hurt behind.
Let others deal with pain.
I'm long gone.

Nothing touches me inside.
The world's a muddy blur.
I'm safe in my whirlwind,
A terrible turbulent top.

Monday, September 15, 2003

Whenever I date a guy, I think, is this the man I want my children to spend their weekends with?
- Rita Rudner

Music playing right now: Barry McGuire - Eve of Destruction

You've got a very sexy carrot...

Apparently there's a lot of lonely shoppers in Paris. Enough that they're starting a special night where single shoppers can try and meet each other. It seems a bit contrived to me. Will people still buy the same things they usually do? Or will there be a run on wine and whipped cream? What if you're all out of toilet paper that night? No date for you. And God help you if you need some tampons. The pickup lines would be kind of interesting though.

"Hey there, nice looking hams."
"Mind if I give your melons a squeeze?"
"Want to see my cucumber?"
"Would you like me in mild, medium, or extra spicy?"
"I may look like vanilla, but I'm really chunky monkey."
"I'm bananas for you!"
"How's about a long cool drink of me?"

Adios for now.

Saturday, September 13, 2003

It's 7:35 on a Saturday morning. The only things that should get me out of bed this early should involve some kind of threat of bodily damage. Instead, I'm going to work to deliver TVs to old people. I think one of these geezers is going to get bitchslapped today.

Friday, September 12, 2003

I have a new addiction. Something to feed my sense of schadenfreude. I feel evil. It's warm.

Thursday, September 11, 2003

I'll sleep when I'm dead
- Warren Zevon

Music playing right now: Alanis - So Pure

I made a pilgrimage to Starbucks last night to pigeonhole myself in one of their comfy chairs and revise some short stories for my creative writing class. I was sitting there, black pen in hand, busily crossing out paragraphs and rewriting sentences, sipping my grande coffee of the day, when I started listening to the group of 50 somethings sitting across from me.

Either these people were part of a self help group or they just talked about some screwed up things. I listened to an entire diatribe and explanation of one woman's struggle to have a relationship with her adoptive dad and how she feels its screwed up her entire life. I got the feeling that she liked playing the victim. Eventually I wanted to reach over, grab her collar, look her in the eye, and tell her to suck it up. I'm sure that that sort of thing can have a bad effect on your life, but to still be harping on it this late in life is a bit much.

I discovered later that drinking two grande coffees at midnight is a bad tactic. I went to bed around 1:30, but didn't fall asleep until about 4. That and they act as pretty effective diuretics. I'm going to bed early tonight.

I've asked a bunch of people this over the last couple of months, but it still hurts my head.

According to scientists, the universe is constantly expanding. What is it expanding into?

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Only the shallow know themselves.
- Oscar Wilde

Music playing right now: Rosie Thomas - Two Dollar Shoes

I am.
I am 6’2”, 170 lbs.
I am Daniel James Golden
I am my mother’s son.
I am me.
I am not you, no matter how much you want me to be.
I am a musicphile. You name it, I listen to it.
I am a reader. I devour them with abandon. George Bernard Shaw to Anne Lamott to Nick Hornby to D.H. Lawrence. They are my bread and butter.
I am a writer. I aspire to more than I will ever become. I have lofty dreams that can never be achieved. I believe that by wanting more than I can have I will always be moving forward.
I am a walking signpost. My body holds the tales of past lives. My right hand holds the story of a wild night in Texas. My back has a premature tattoo born out of the desire to impress. Life has written itself in scars and ink.
I am a listener.
I am a talker.
I am shy.
I am outspoken.
I am a contradiction in terms.
I am a rebel that has never rebelled.
I am a dreamer that never realizes dreams.
I am an artist without artistic talent.
I am a hard worker.
I am lazy beyond comprehension.
I am a social animal. I rate myself by the number of friends I maintain at any particular moment.
I am without emotion. I cannot cry.
I am a sucker for sappy songs.
I am a pirate in disguise.
I am addicted to t-shirts, music lyrics, and kisses.
I am a model boyfriend.
I am a scared possum.
I am an elitist. I believe I know more than you and you’re simply dirt beneath my shoe.
I am a ship without a destination.
I am a walking cliché.
I am only in love when it’s not returned.
I am unrequited.
I am adrift.
I am stuck.
I am a fan of eeyore, beaker, and all the sad children’s characters.
I am, therefore I think.
I am.

Now I just need to get around to revising that list of 100 things about me.

I never think at all when I write. Nobody can do two things at the same time and do them both well.
- Donald R. Marquis

Music playing right now: Tom Petty - Something in the Air

Somehow I think my internet has repaired itself. It's still not quite back to usual, but it's at least up to the point where it's usable. In honor of this momentous occasion, I've taken the opportunity to update my links. So check out some of the ones that I've been to lazy to stick up there before. The most notable new ones are Sister Mary Karen, The Plug (Always one of my favorites), and the Sad Rabbi (an old friend who just started). So check 'em out while I'm trying to cobble together something worth writing about. Adios for now.

Monday, September 08, 2003

I burn, I pine, I lust. I want DSL. or Cable. or a T3 line. something better than crappy dialup that doesn't work. Anyway, for some reason it's kind of working now. But much much slower than usual.

I'm thinking of getting a new tattoo. #3. I'm not exactly sure what or where yet, but the fever is hitting.

I've been reading plays by George Bernard Shaw. Really good. If you've never read any of his stuff, I'd highly recommend it. They read more like novels than plays, especially with all of his descriptions. I just finished Mrs. Warren's Profession. I'm wondering if there are any current playwrights out there that write stuff this good. Or is playwriting a dying art? Up there with needlepoint and china painting.

I think when I die I want to be reincarnated as a garden gnome.

Saturday, September 06, 2003

I still have no internet at home. I'm currently writing from my mother's work, where I'm downloading a new version of Norton, hoping to find some nasty virus that is impeding my internet enjoyment. I'm really about to fucking explode. This is incredibly frustrating. The internet is my sole outlet to the outside world and it is now cut off. It sucks.

Things that I haven't been able to write about:
I got the delivery van stuck in a ditch and had to wave down a passing truck to pull us out.
I got tattoo advice from a cute chick in class
Psycho chick is still stalking me
I'm pretty sure that large fat white women are the only ones who wear looney tunes shirts (usually tweety)

Be assured that I miss all of you. I'm not sure how much longer this'll be. In the meantime, shoot me an email or give me a call. If you don't know my phone number, call someone who does. Adios for now muchachos.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

I'm starting to get very annoyed. Our internet at home here is run through my brothers computer. Apparently my brothers computer has decided it doesn't like all of that responsibility. Every time after you start it up, you get 5 or 6 minutes of good connection. After that, his system resources spike up to 90 percent used and nothing moves. So if you're one of the people I usually talk to for hours on IM, I'm sorry. You'll have to wait for your dang fix. And if you're not one of those people, why aren't you?

In other news, I dropped a TV on my finger again yesterday. I think it might be sprained. They should really get less of a klutz for this job. Adios for now.

Monday, September 01, 2003

lord, its easier to play a role
its simpler to quote lines
when your sense of humor's television
and your hurt is blind
- D

Music playing right now: Tom Petty - The Waiting

I have a new aspiration in life. I want to break the heart of a songwriter so I can become memorialized in song. The guy who inspired "You Oughta Know" by Alanis will live on forever.

About Me

My wife thinks I'm awesome. Counter

Days since Dan entered into wedded bliss:

::Required Reading::
My beautiful wife
The Slot
A Capital Idea
eegah, eliot!
Practicing Myrtle
Obscure Store
The Plug


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