see how easy it is to lie.


we went to al's in wallingford. friday night, so you go to a bar, you know, because who knows what might happen? my friend ordered pitcher after pitcher of rainier, and i sat there watching pan's labyrinth on a flat screen monitor. there were other fools there, white kids mostly, probably uw students. they were drinking beer, too, celebrating some guy's birthday, i think. i think they said happy birthday to someone at some point, but i could be wrong. my friends played pool, and i played some retro arcade game. first space invaders and then something that was like pong but more difficult. 80s games are a challenge.

i sat down and drank. there were girls at the bar, but what was i gonna say to them? i had to figure out my life first, and who knows when that would be. and anyway, how was i gonna compare to the abercrombie lacrosse team flooding the place? at the end of the bar, there was an older man, probably in his 40s, maybe even 50s, and he was just drinking by himself. that's my future, i thought. a little while ago, i read on cnn that 17,000 men had expressed interest in buying a $6,000 sex doll. things weren't looking so good.

i played two games of pool, won one, lost one. i begrudged my friend for being better at everything than i am - guitar, singing, basketball, dealing with life's disappointments, and now, pool. the weather was shit, and i was sick of being in seattle, even though i had just told another friend off about how she couldn't blame seattle for her lack of a social life. we were chatting online, and she just went off on it, and i couldn't not say something, so i did. what the hell did she want anyway?

she said that she just wanted to have people who cared about her. i immediately thought about what i've been thinking and writing a lot about recently, and that is the fact that nobody cares about us. we're here for a short while, and then we're not, and hardly anyone will even know the difference. she was on a tear, though, in a mood, and so i didn't tell her that, obviously. besides, it's not original, nor is it productive to think about. she said that she wanted big groups at dinner, parties, traveling, you know, things that friends do with each other! i told her that it was probably a girl's desire because most guys i know think those kinds of things are retarded.

she called me out on it. she said that not having any sort of real social life was a problem of mine, and that i could blame it on seattle, too, if i wanted. i thought about that wine party i went to recently, the one where i didn't know anybody and i felt uncomfortable and awkward the whole time. i guess that's what white professionals with friends do. and then i thought about my nieces, nephews and cousins in the philippines, and how they dance and sing and do lots of crazy shit together.

none of my friends do that. instead, we go to a bar, and we talk about things we've already talked about to death. so there we were, talking about things we've already discussed before, and then i got up, and i said, let's go smoke a cigarette. you wanna smoke a cigarette with me, my friend said. and i said, yeah. we went outside and we smoked a cigarette in the cold. some girls walked by, and two of them stopped to have a smoke, too. that girl is beautiful, my friend said. and then she turned around. nevermind, he said.

an old man showed up, and he was smoking a cigarette, too. he commented on the girl who was wearing a foot cast. how'd you break it, he said. she said, playing tackle football. no, really, he said. she said, really, it was tackle football. this is some shameful shit, my friend said. i stood there, just laughing at the scene unfolding before me, laughing like wiz khalifa's donkey laugh, wishing i was high so it could be even funnier. this is just sad, my friend said. the old man just kept going off, obviously hoping to score. just fucking sad, my friend repeated.

the girls went inside, and the old man said he loved girls like that, preferably ones who could tackle him. how old are you, the old man asked my friend. twenty-two, my friend said. my friend asked the old man how old he was. the old man said, like two-hundred ninety-eight and a half. for some reason, i found his response really stupid. so stupid, in fact, that it made me question the existence of god, as though i haven't been questioning already. my friend told the old man that he was a poly-sci major at the uw. the old man went inside. see how easy it is to lie, my friend said to me.

we walked over to dick's, and my friend bought me two dick's specials. i stood there, looking at the dick's sign, and the dark night with clouds splattered everywhere. no one cares about us, and no one will even know we were here.

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