The Rubb, Ybor City • February 5, 1999

This is the story of a high-school senior named Danny. He was smarter than a lot of the other kids in his classes, most notably, English & Lit. Quite an over-achiever. He was on the honor roll, never did any drugs or caused trouble, and pretty much did what was expected. He was very skilled at playing the cello, and loved the music of Handel. The teachers loved him and he was always the center of attention. He was a nice guy and every girl wanted him, since he had sort of an innocent, boyish charm and most surely a promising, secure future.

One day, he found out his girlfriend, Abbey (whom he had been dating and was completely in love with since his freshman year) had been cheating on him for quite some time — with his best friend, John, whom he had known since 5th grade. Now, Danny had a very stable home-life; his parents were still together; they were a very tight family. But this did little to dampen the effects of this unexpected betrayal. He lashed out at everything and everyone. He started by systematically destroying everything in his bedroom, including his expensive cello and collection of Handel CDs. His grades dropped drastically. His parents didn’t at all know what to do with him. They sent him to counseling, but it only drove him more over the edge, and they suggested medication. His friends couldn’t understand him, since his speech had mutated into a dense, interwoven system of cynical, conceptual-games & symbolism. They, of course, became fearful and stopped speaking to him. He barely graduated; he wouldn’t have if it weren’t for the teachers being so easy on him and hoping he would recover soon.

Upon graduating from high school, Danny moved into a shitty apartment in the sketchy area of town. He ostracized all of his friends and got a job as a dishwasher. He then began drinking and smoking pot all day, feeling that he was somehow proving to the world that HE could be just as bad as they were. He made several attempts at cleansing himself by having meaningless sexual relations with various easy girls from around town, but just felt emptier. “What am I going to do with my life,” he thought. “The world is full of fucking idiots, and here I am, smarter than them, and not moving forward or accomplishing anything. I should be ruling them.”

Late one night, in a deep depression, he was watching a Green Day video — when out of the blue, a plan came together. It was there in an instant.

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