Friday, May 26, 2006

Is anyone else seeing starfish on the walls?

Made it back to Lincoln, stayed with the lovely and my only Neil last night. Half way through the drive I wanted to quit. Not good when it's around 530 miles total. I went to my old family GP today b/c I couldn't take the overwhelming sickness anymore. I got among other things: an inhaler (my first! I'm so proud), antibiotics, antihistamines (which I can't afford so f*ck that) and a cough syrup - with hydrocodone in it! Life is frickin' great. The walls melting for you too? Oh, just me.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Eyes and teeth, eyes and teeth

I am trying to get ready for a big job interview. A) I knicked myself shaving and had to the toilet paper graft to stop the bleeding from an unnoticed bug bite that got sliced off B) I still sound like a 13 year old boy C) I smell like a giant HALLS cough drop D) this is in the "Denver Tech Center," it's possible I may never find my way out. Please friends, send me positive vibes! :)

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Omaha-ns, Lee Terry Eviscerated on The Colbert Report

I got a desperate yet excited phone call from my sister yesterday, declaring that Nebraska's 2nd Congressional Rep., the asshat Republican Lee Terry, was on The Colbert Report. This hits home in a few ways - as obviously, I am FROM Nebraska's second district, Lee Terry lives in Valley, where my parents, Lynnie and Terry's caustic, hateful bitch-ass wife reside, Omaha Steaks owner Kathy Simons was my high school mentor (see the CC story) and as I've stated before - I love Stephen Colbert. In my desperation to find this video clip I stumbled upon a delicious New Nebraskan blog entry about the interview. You can view the clip on the Comedy Central Web site, but I could only hear that audio b/c of my danged old compy. This is a hilarious look at where we grew up, and our douchebag Congressional representative. I am trying to find the original broadcast date, I believe that it's May 10 if you want to download it from iTunes.

So much funny, brain...overheating...

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Welcome Cadence!

And with that, another Stewart derivative takes to Earth. DUN DUN DUN. Almost as scary as the Stay Puft man...nawwww.

Stay PUFT!

Dun dun dun...

Nice Hummer

Yesterday I went to the DMV b/c in the process of applying for my passport I need a valid ID that matches my current residence or at least is in the same state. So, I hauled my fanny down, pink eye and all, to the Denver DMV. Now, funny enough, in Denver proper there is only actually ONE DMV building and it's in the southwestern part of town, in a really depreciated neighborhood. It's odd to see Lexus SUVs and even nice little compact cars in the lot, it seems out of place. The building which appears to be an old grocery store is ill-designed for the massive number of people there. A stinky pack of PWT, two guys and a girl, engaged in an awkward and public flirting threesome. I had thankfully brought along my iPod for entertainment b/c I stood in line about an hour and a half. Now, as much as I complained about renewing my license back home, it was a dream compared to this. I had to wear my glasses and when it was finally my turn thought I was going to actually fail the eye test, I couldn't read the line of letters at the top. My photo, I have a feeling, is going to look like a mug shot - worst picture of me ever. And not only that, I won't receive the actual license for 30 days. Argh!

Overheard conversation behind me:
[yuppie, 8' 16-year-old girl]: Daddy, daddy, I want to call mommy and tell her I passed!
[yuppie dad to over-sunglassed, now I've made it even w/a neck tattoo guy]: Nice Hummer you got out there. How long have you had it?
[Sunglasses]: I bought it for Christmas, so just since December
[yuppie 16-year-old]: I'm going to tell mommy first that I failed. Daddy, give me a phone.
[yuppie daddy]: How is that on gas mileage.
[Sunglasses]: Well, it got about 12 to 14 mpg, but after I put on the rims and tires it gets about 8 mpg
[Yuppie daddy]: Wow, that's tough
[Sunglasses]: Yeah, it costs be about $85 each time to fill it up
[Yuppie giant girl]: Mommy, I passed, so you have to give up that extra garage stall! Daddy will have to move the BMW to his side

The conversation then devolved into discussions of skiing v. snowboarding and I threw up in my mouth a little, turned up On the Media and waited for the soothing sounds of Bob Garfield to carry me away.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Little Miss Evil's got a way with people

This next song really doesn't have anything to do with anything except my BFF loves it and so it makes me think of her. Today's Song of the Day is "Forget My Name" by Danko Jones. Rock n' roll, Lynnie. I probably will in fact burn in hell with you. ;)

Sunday, May 21, 2006

$20k for Americans

We just got done with our much anticipated "Scary movie night" here at the D-dawg & Roommate pad. I admit, I was stoned on TheraFlu for much of the duration, but we watched honestly two lame-ass movies. The first movie was "Wolf Creek," an Australian flick based on the alleged true-life event of three young backpackers and those who came (and went, alack) before them. It was okay, usually I prefer the based-on-a-real-story type thrillers, whereas this was meh, okay. I have a ringing in my ear that's infected such that I have an actual ECHO in my own ear! This makes screaming and high-pitched minor notes on the violin much more intense. Plus, that made it impossible for me to understand the Australians. Fortunately - not much talky talky. This movie was okay, I would give it 100 out of 1000 stars.

The next movie, the much ballyhooed "Hostel" starring Jay Hernandez had something I felt like the first movie lacked - a triumphant end. However, the first forty minutes of the film were honestly just porn. So I can imagine that high school to thirty-something guys got into it. So much t & a I felt like I should actually HAVE penis to be watching it, you know, as a pre-req. Honestly, I kind of wanted to see all three get a good axing, they were kind of pigs! Two of the three mains characters disappear pretty quickly after the porn fantasy ends and Hernandez, as "Paxton" is able to escape (albeit w/quite some difficulty) only to run into the bad guy down the line... and SHAZAM! Comeuppance! He's a man on the edge! Forgetting, of course, that he would have been in shock hours and hours prior to this and probably would have bled out and died. At least let the man give himself a tourniquet. I had been excited b/c I had heard this movie was really scary. Sources say: icky and lame. I give it 20 stars and a Pepto-Bismol.

Do I stay or do I go?

I am not going to give some detailed explanation. I shall spare you, I just feel like today's Song of the Day is fitting for the Denver atomosphere. It's hot here today, take a walk and get yourself some ice cream. Enjoy: "Fairest of the Seasons" by husky voiced, iconic rock songstress Nico.

Cool Nerd Alert #1

"Rick Steves' Europe" is an awesome show played here in the states on PBS. I love this show and I don't care who knows it, making Rick Steves my first Cool Nerd Alert. A tour guide by trade, he has written books as well as having radio and television programs. For someone like me, who has not yet been able to travel to Europe, it's a delightful eye candy feast of scenery, food, people, customs, art and culture through the eyes of an easy-going American nerd. He's relatable b/c he's not some overly-muscled x-treme sports fanatic going at everything w/out reserve or someone who will pretentiously review only a city's four-star offerings. Je l'adore! In the states, you can find listings at


I have pissed off the disease gods. I am at home with pink eye (both eyes), sinus and ear infections (both of the them), and a UTI. I just made myself walk down to Panera for some Greek salad goodness and get off of the couch for the first time in approx. 3 days. I have been showering twice a day, so I wasn't too terribly stinky. I hate not having health insurance, it cost me $100 just to get antibiotics for the UTI and I'm just going to try to wait out the others. So I'm crusty and squinty and have to refill another prescription, which will cost me another billion dollars or so. I guess I am going to walk myself down to the pharmacy. I was trying to explain to my neighborhood clinic that I couldn't afford to go back to another doctor to get a scrip for eye drops, and I almost started crying. It was that terrible feeling when you're sick, and you can't be rational or make decisions, and I just wanted my mommy. I have lots of nice friends here, but my roommate was gone and others were busy - and it felt v. lonely to be sick and by myself. I am anxious about the wedding we have to shoot this weekend, but will be happy for some hugs and maybe some home cooking. Blech, my ears hurt!

Thursday, May 18, 2006

If you love fast food, stop here

In college I read a book called, "Fast Food Nation" for a philosophy of modern issues class. Written by journalist Eric Schlosser in fact-style writing, this book is a time-traveling look at the fast food industry and those built up around the rise of a Fast Food Nation. This includes the realities of today's industrial environment including the use and abuse of immigrant labor, animal treatment and welfare, and the safety of the food millions consume each day. I happened to see that they have made a movie of this amazing, muck-raker style book called Fast Food Nation - The Movie based on Schlosser's work and stars one of my favs, the delicious Greg Kinnear. It's a featured video today on YouTube, check it out. Honestly, this book is moving, I read the book, millions have read the book, but I never stopped eating fast food. What does that say about us?

Oh yeah! I bet I can care even LESS!

Blanket apology to friends and family (not that any of them know about / read this blog) for my poor attitude this week and lack of communication. I am just having a hard time and can't seen to get my balance. My week isn't getting any better, I'm taking myself out this afternoon (it's time to walk the Dan) and maybe that will help. Sometimes it's hard, even when you know you should, to keep your chin(s) up.

Great Song of the Day sent to me by an awesome friend. It's "Fire Sign" by David Berkeley - thanks much for the song dude.

Photo by J. Lynn Batten, 2006

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

We all feel this way sometimes

Oh yeah, I'm taking it there. [makes rock n' roll hand sign, tongue out] Today's Song of the Day is "Soulshine" by Gov't Mule. And yes, I've seen them live and yes, it was for a boy. BUT, they were actually very cool and I had a great time. I feel like I need this song today.

Random Rundown

  • Last night at the tavern someone put a cigarette out on my hand, was a fantastic blister pop this morning. Quite impressive.
  • My annoying, pipsqueek of a "boss" got fired, thus relieving me of Rockies evil credit card duty. Hazah! Oh wait, now I have nothing nothing.
  • I found Lynn's Bon Jovi Greatest hits album in my iTunes library, I love finding random shit like that. Lay your hands on me!
  • This week I satisfied my 1x/2 years craving for Long John Silvers. Fish planks - it's both a pose, and a food, and a wooden walkway!
  • This week a bird bath / planter showed up in my living room.
  • On a mountain trail run on Saturday I encountered a swarm of bees on a narrow path; ran like hell and had no stings. They must have sense my awesomeness.
  • Grey's Anatomy was so, so good except for the putting down of the dog; I sobbed like a little bitch. If you don't watch this show, you're a Class-A nerd.
  • Learned how to download a new screen saver for my phone in manner of a nanna. Got "Classic Mickey" b/c I panicked and hit "buy."

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

We rarely practice discern

Fitting for today's issues, this is a groovy little diddy by Spoon. "The Way We Get By" is today's Song of the Day.

Am I being followed?!?

A friend of mine told me yesterday that I have a "persecution complex." I have been going over and over it in my mind and feeling really sad about this. "Persecution complex" is just a nicer way of saying, "It's all about me complex," and what hurts is that there is probably some validity to it. The context of the situation is that in the last couple of weeks I was very, very briefly involved with a kid that hangs out at my favorite neighborhood bar - a place, I might add, where I spend a great deal of time. Unfortunately, so does he. I hadn't heard from him and awkwardly ran into him last week at the bar. I tried to be genial and make conversation as a way to alleviate the weirdness. Not only had he not called me back (which was fine b/c the guy, to put it delicately, was as good as the weird, brown wrinkled fry you find inbetween the car seat and the floor months after your Happy Meal) but he was acting embarrassed and almost ashamed. How humiliating! He had walked by me in the bar, clearly had seen me, and told me later he hadn't. Awful! Not only did I make a poor choice by hooking up with this douchebag in the first place, I had to continue to see him and watch him act like I was some leper troll. So the other night, he came up to my friend and I asking after another regular we know. I answered but was curt, I mean, wtf. I don't really feel like I need to converse, and yet my curt behavior made me feel guilty. I hate that! I am finally being better about making clean cuts when something isn't good, he dicks around like a coward, and I feel GUILTY about not being nicer.

Now, I'm a grown woman and in no way am I evading responsibility. I made those choices, I knew what I was doing and am in no way a victim. I am more pissed at myself b/c not only did I have my blinders on b/c I was kind of lonely but now I am uncomfortable at a place that had become sort of my safe-haven. I do wish that he had just been a man, and called me, and in five minutes we could have had it all worked out and avoided the bar weirdness. I know that what this Douchebaggo thinks shouldn't hurt my feelings, but it does. As tough as I wish I could be it still hurts when you're rejected, no matter what the circumstances - even if you're rejected by a lame coward. And I was relating my less-than-classy curt conversation w/Douchebaggo, who had no business talking to me at the bar quite frankly, as well as discussing an upcoming trip with my friend when he gave me the label.

When I talk about what's going on in my life, it's not because I feel unfairly put upon, or persecuted, it's just how I deal with things. I am emotional, but only temporarily irrational. I work things out, or deal with even painful things, by talking (sometimes yelling) and just purging myself of bad feelings and then, give me five minutes, I'll laugh about it and move on. So when I'm upset, it's usually b/c I'm hurt. In this emotional state, it's hard for me to take feedback about other people's perspectives, or what I might misperceive or worse, what I am doing wrong because you can't rationalize feelings. I just need to vent and feedback like that is difficult to digest; it says to me, even though it's almost never the intent, that I should just be sucking it up, keeping my mouth shut, letting it go. That kind of feedback almost always comes from guy friends. It feels unfair and shameful. And I don't know how to change this about myself, I certainly can't be silenced ;) but how do I work that out without upsetting friends or seeming nutty? Is it the way I'm communicating or to whom?

This is part of my lifelong struggle, I have always been very sensitive and probably always will be. When someone says I need to lighten up, or not take something personally as also recently happened with another friend, it's like saying, quit being self-focused: quit being Dannielle. Because I do make things personal and they're not always about me, cognitively, I know that and I hate that part of me. It's like in the fourth grade we were reading, as a class, "Charlotte's Web" and I started sobbing. The story was so sad, and it seemed so unjust and unbearable but it was so embarrassing too. The trick is, this is the same part of me that makes me able to relate to other people easily, to be intuitive with friends and comfortable in new situations.

I think it's understandable that when your luck is poor for an amount of time, and you're feeling this big, to feel like you're being followed by the cartoon rainy cloud. Each consecutive thunderboldt is kind of a reminder that you're the wet loser and the bad stuff is sometimes more powerful and thus easier to focus on than the good stuff. Lately, I don't feel like I'm being persecuted, but I feel like I'm toxic and it's spilling over into social and personal relationships. I haven't had a successful relationship in more than two years, and even that is probably still a debatable label. The Danni is unloveable! And not only that, apparently so much so that grown men slink around bars to avoid her. I don't want to hide out but that's how I'm starting to feel. Don't get near me! Your hair will fall out, babies will cry, develop an unibrow, etc. So what people think of me or say seems more acute, sharper. I guess I need to really try to keep my eyes open and really try to keep myself in check because I definitely don't want to be the kind of person who makes every situation about herself and why the world is against her...and yet, lol, I just wrote an 8000 word blog about how I feel about myself. I am just having a hard year but it's not about me being persecuted. That being said, Douchebaggo tries to biz caz Fri talk to me again he's going to have a new spot for my pool stick.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Fall is here!....okay, not really

Danni's Song of the Day is We're Going to be Friends by the White Stripes. Let's all hope for positive karma for the week...including me getting a damn job. :)

Saturday, May 13, 2006

"I make poor choices"

I haven't been making an accurate account of my life in the last couple of weeks. As much as I want this blog to always be honest, even of the things about me that are ugly or painful, some things are just too personal to give up. On the upshot, my pool game is at an all-time kick ass and I'm playing really well and I have made some really cool friends here in Denver. Today's Song of the Day is "Somebody I used to know" by the late, great Elliott Smith. For those of us with bruised feelings and a tender heart, this song is a beautiful fuck you to those we've mistakenly allowed near us. Is it time to go to Mexico yet?

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Another awesome reason to visit Mexico

Mexico is only a presidential signature away from making the small-quantity possession of marijuana, cocaine, ecstasy and heroine "decriminalized." The Mexican government is claiming that by eliminating the need to find and prosecute individuals with small amounts of drugs, law-enforcement officials will be freer to investigate and pursue major drug sellers and traffickers. Naturally, the Bush White House has their panties in a wad because it wouldn't be particularly savvy of Bush to do what we all know he's doing at this point - his happy dance while planning his next vacation to Mexico to dapple in some bugger sugar.

I think this is a good time to make mention of the fact that demand for drugs is perfectly inelastic. Persecution of drug dealers decreases the supply of drugs and thus the cost is increased. However, the demand for drugs is perfectly inelastic and does not decrease despite the increase in cost. So, as costs increase the level of crime to fund the cost of drugs also rises. By legalizing drugs, thus increasing the supply and decreasing the cost, the level of overall crime to fund the demand would diminish. I would like to think that perhaps the US might take a less than knee-jerk reaction to this new development with our Southern neighbor and analyze what changes take place. I say, we legalize drugs but regulate them for purity and potency as you do with prescription medication or even, for that matter alcohol, decrease crime and increase the safety for those people already choosing to use illegal drugs.

Let me qualify by saying that I don't do drugs but I think especially for an economically challenged country, in desperate need of increased social programs and greater regulation of major drug trafficking, this is an efficient reallocation of resources. Also, let me add - I will be taking my next vacation in Cozumel.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Messengers have come and gone, but the struggle still goes on

In celebration of the success of this week's Day without Immigrant Labor for the advancement of immigrant rights I am picking a two-song duo: "Street guru (part one)" and "The preacher" by innovative musical producer and songwriter Nitin Sawhney for the Songs of the Day. I don't think there's a direct correlation, but I think especially the second song is a reflective, soulful and prophetic song. Plus, it's my blog so bite me. :) If you haven't heard his work before, you're in for a treat.

V. brilliant site for the birds and lads

I have just discovered a Web site that might, in fact, change my life. No more saying, "WTH does knackered mean?!? Please, tell me the word in American." Now, I can just look it up! This shall change all my correspondence with my beautiful UK blog readers and show listeners. One thing in particular has struck me and that is how MANY words the English have for idiot! Here is my English to American word of the Day , I believe that actually Superhot Supernanny gave us this word once.

whip round n. "A whip round is a collection of money - usually a somewhat impromptu and informal one. You might have a whip round for Big Mike's bus-fare home but you probably wouldn't have one for his triple heart bypass." I don't agree with their translation to American, I would think they would use a verb and "chip in" or "take up a collection" California someone might ask for some "fundage."

The boys from our own backyard

Featured break music from Borderline's Episode #53, "Worked Up So Sexual" by The Faint is the song of the day. The song was borrowed from the PodShow Podsafe Music Network, but The Faint is produced by Omaha's own Saddle Creek Records. Saddle Creek also produces Bright Eyes and Orenda Fink. Some members are currently on tour with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and you can read a review of that show by music maven J. Lynn on Borderline's site under the "After the Show" section.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

It's an okapi!

My new zoo pics are up.

Song of the Day

In honor of Stephen Colbert, I am choosing "Eye of the Tiger," by Survivor. Is also v. good for running I've found. In the words of Ron Burgundy:

"I've often said the band survivor is the best that ever was. In my opinion they put rock music to bed. Everyone else is an imitator. That's right, you heard me Beatles, Rolling Stones, Bach, Beethoven, you guys suck...dong."

Monday, May 01, 2006

Stephen Colbert for Press Secretary

Saturday night Steven Colbert was the closing speaker at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner. Many clips have been shown about the president's comedic foray along side impersonator Steve Bridges. While some clips are funny, Colbert proceeded to stand up at the podium and take everyone to task under the guise of his right-wing newsman from The Colbert Report. While the speech starts out with the same straight-faced wit that so many love on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report, it becomes obvious that the audience of officials, the president and first lady, and press corp members are the target and they become more and more uncomfortable. He pointed out Valerie Plame to the audience, and the "realizing" he had leaked her attendance, restated it was simply Joseph Wilson's wife. Colbert is witty, funny but cunningly honest about the White House Press Corp's responsibility, the White House's evasive and dishonest tactics and the media's failure as a watchdog for the people. Even long-time journalist and Helen Thomas makes a cameo in Colbert's pseudo-Press Secretary audition tapes, making it undeniably credible and hilarious. While the audience is left nearly silent at the conclusion, it's impact is deafening.

The lack of reaction from the audience and members of the press corp specifically demonstrates the media's negligence in questioning and participating during an arguably poor period in American history. The Washington Post article "All Kidding Aside" by Dan Froomkin cites this blog posting by Video Dog in Salon and best articulates what Colbert's speech revealed of the press - at an event that is ostensibly a good-humor, informal formal event to make superficial reparations between the White House and the press corp members that cover them.

"The proof of his accuracy lies in how badly the . . . Washington press corps reacted. After all, this wasn't the usual baby-soft slapstick they usually get at the correspondents' dinner . . . [F]or the most part the press sat on their hands -- while just moments before, they were laughing uproariously at President Bush's incredibly lame skit with a Bush impressionist. That was Colbert's real feat: Showing us the real Washington media world, where everyone worries so much about offending someone, anyone , that the least bit of frank talk turns them into obedient little church mice."

As a journalist, I think that while his speech was shocking it was something we should all be asking of the media, of our elected representatives and especially DEMANDING of Bush's public communications staff. Who besides Colbert would have the courage to stand up in front of hundreds of peers, the PRESIDENT AND FIRST LADY, members of the Supreme Court, the who's who of the press and eviscerate everyone in the room with the worst kind of weapon - the truth. What balls, I can't imagine even standing up in front of a group such as that let alone to deliver a speech with such poise.

Watch and enjoy. Warning: not for the faint of heart...or bladder.

Note: it doesn't seem like the text link is working, at least for me. Try a copy and paste if you have problems.

Danni et son hippopotome


Happy May Day!

I'd rather be the one who loves than to be loved and never even know

Lynn's is v. brilliant okay. Song of the Morning by my red-fro'ed honey Josh Ritter. I got kicked off his "street team" somewhere along the line but I'll promote his shit anyway. I have all of his albums, including his original self-titled, but I think in honor of this beautiful spring day, Danni's Song of the Morning is "Snow is Gone," from the Hello Starling album.

His new album IS OUT! The Animal Years is out and available for purchase...or gifting via iTunes...maybe to some deserving or not-so-deserving blogger.