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2001-01-31
A Day in the Life
If your life had a soundtrack, what would it be? Here's one possibility from the life of Dan.

2001-01-24
This Guy Reads from a Card!
Mild-mannered Brits get caught up in the deadliest addicition of our decade: quiz shows. Will the world ever be safe again?

2001-01-17
Happily Ever After...
How escapism can open a window to a happier and more fulfilling life or Why we should continue to read fairy tales to our children.

2001-01-10
Just One More Thing
2001 kicks off with a bang at what Mac users call "The Big Show".

2001-01-03
Inspiration and You!
How good company, General Tso's chicken, and an action figure made Comics Ex Machina possible.

Check the archives for more columns.

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A Day in the Life  

I don't believe that I am alone in my devout belief that life would be better if it had a soundtrack. How cool is it to walk down the street, black coat-tails flying, and a slight smirk on your face as you whip out your designer shades and your CD player lays down a phat techno beat? Now imagine just how much cooler it would be if everybody else could hear it too. Or when you sit down to have a talk with your girlfriend as the strains of romantic violin come to a crescendo, and she, unable to resist the sirens' call of the music, falls weeping into your arms. Yes, life with a soundtrack would be the very epitome of the life that Hollywood wants us to live. And that, as we all know, is the life we should endeavor to live.

There are some points in life when music tends to interact in strange ways with reality. The first example that pops to my mind is one afternoon last fall when I was sitting with some of my fellow anime club members at a lunch table. We're just shooting the breeze when suddenly we all just start growing quieter, because in the background, coming from the speakers which are usually blaring some awful pop music radio station, is this low bass tone which is gradually rising and falling, kinda like the Jaws theme. We start looking around, really slowly, expecting, at any moment, for someone to crash through the door and open fire, or for a huge lizard to rip off the building's roof, smacking its lips in anticipation of its own lunch. Nothing happened; the music disappeared, and we started talking again. About five minutes later, it stealthily returned, and once again, conversation diminished until we were all very nervously looking at our lunches with unheard of interest. Nothing ever came of what we dubbed the "ominous lunchtime music", but it was powerful enough that we felt that something should happen. The most popular example of music and life coinciding is that awesome Volkswagen Jetta commercial (I really hope to do something interesting with that music in the future).

So for today's column, I'm going to try something a little different. Rather than telling you why I think it would be so cool to have a soundtrack, I'm going to do my best to show you. Below I'm gonna give you an outline of my typical day, and along with it some clips that I feel appropriately accompany my daily activities (it's not too often that I do all of these things on one day, but I'm putting together what I think would be a "particularly good day in the life of Dan"). What you'll find below is: My Own Title [the part of my day it goes with] - the name of the piece and by whom.

Feel free to compile your own soundtrack listings in the forums or email them to me. Now enjoy a day in the life of Dan!


  1. Brand New Day [Waking Up] - Lunch W/The King from American Beauty by Thomas Newman
  2. A Path Well Tread [The Walk to Class] - History Repeating by Shirley Basse and the Propellorheads
  3. Tick-Tock Goes the Clock [End of lecture] - In the Hall of the Mountain King by Grieg
  4. Good food, good drink, good company [Lunchtime with friends] - Gold Finger from the El Hazard Soundtrack
  5. Seven Men on the Line [Ultimate Frisbee with the boys] - Fanfare for the Common Man by Aaron Copland
  6. Chillin' with the Boys [Heading out to the party/Party] - Theme from Shaft by Isaac Hayes
  7. There's Always a Girl [the girl at the party] - Pinch Me by Barenaked Ladies
  8. Lingonberries! [Late night at IHOP] - Sing, Sing, Sing by Benny Goodman
  9. Riding off into the Sunrise [Heading out/Dropping off the guys] - Buck Rogers by Feeder
  10. Homewards Bound/"End Credits" [To Bed] - Joker by The Steve Miller Band


Dan Moren is a picker, a grinner, a lover, and a sinner. He plays his music in the sun.


All text and images 2000 by Jason, Kai, Dan, Tony, and Mecha Gaijin. He WILL kick your ass. Instant superfine!
All characters are ™ & © their respective owners. All Rights Reserved. Some Comics Ex Machina (CXM) strips are satirical in nature, and are not intended maliciously. CXM has invented all names and situations in its strips, except in cases when public figures are being satirized. Any other use of real names is accidental and coincidental, or used as a fictional depiction or personality parody. CXM makes no representation as to the truth or accuracy of the preceding information.