Daytalking (from CITD), Nightwalking (courtesy of John Alspach), and Stargazing (from CITD 2017)

Daytalking: A Primer

Michael Maupin
4 min readNov 22, 2017


“You say it’s very hard
To leave behind the life we knew,
But there’s no other way
And now it’s really up to you.” — Elton John, “Love Song”

Here’s an experiment: Imagine you’re waiting for your best friend.

Next, picture that tickly, glowing sensation in your chest. If a stranger walked by at that moment, you might say, “D’you know what I’m waiting for? My best friend ever!” The stranger might look at you weirdly, but you’re so full of joyful anticipation you don’t even notice them.

Dan and I Daytalking, summer of 1980 (from CITD).

And let’s rope this in. The thing you’re waiting for has to be sentient; it can’t be an inanimate object, like a digital device, a date on the calendar, or a bucket full of money.

It could be a lover, or a person you’ve known for a long time — heck, it could even be your dog. (If your dog is your lover, immediately seek professional help.)

Now that we’ve determined it’s a person (or, okay, a pet), and you’re so excited you’re beside yourself with joy, the next thing is to imagine that moment your expected friend arrives, the very moment your eyes meet.

Imagine your surprise when you realize … they are you.

On the morning of Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, I had a dream.

So I wrote it down in my journal:

“A big party, a party with all the people I’ve known in my life … There’s a hint that my parents were there … It was a sprawling location, indoors and out, with food and drink tucked into corners and tables where people congregated, eating, drinking, and talking. I was drifting through and passing by people who I knew … but who didn’t recognize me. They just walked on past. [Old friend Dan Rogers, whose feet are pictured at left in top photo] had come early and was parked at a table filled with other people and didn’t seemed interested in mingling. I felt more like roaming around, sampling food and drink and seeing who was there. I recall feeling resentment at the people who passed by, or found people to talk to, or refused to mingle with the party. [I] was like, ‘Why the hell did you come to a party if you’re not going to talk with more



Michael Maupin

Writer, editor, and media maker. Blogs at Completely in the Dark ( and lives in Minneapolis, MN. Currently on Substack at StoryShed.