Monday 10/20/2008 12:59:00 AM

Dinner with friends never really is. Our lives tell us. In thirsty sobs and poorly camouflaged snickers. Still alone. In the dark. Only now there are people looking. Sex is still just a means to an end. And love is a trophy to flaunt for your guests.

We eat. Pasta and chicken. Fillet and asparagus. Still insisting a universal hunger unites us. Spewing adjectives in careless tumbles. Good. Great. Splendid. Empty candy papers. The package still insisting how good it is.

Long after.

The sweetness has been tasted.

I was talking with my brother. He said, women lie much more than men. Clothes. Makeup. Salads for dinner. True enough I thought. But men, they love. All those little lies we tell them.

I mean, we had gravity to help us. We hadn't started that far from the ground. Looking up. The world towering over us in patient shadows. While we assembled our stairs.

It's hard not to look down. Even when you know you shouldn't.

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