Last night my mother and I went out to dinner together. For a city slicker like her, eating in a restaurant with a sports bar is common. For a quiet girl from a quiet town, a lot can be learned from watching the people that hang out there. I could not help but laugh as I watched the bar fill up with women wearing cut off shorts and blonde hair fried to the roots, looking for a male companion among the slick, muscle shirts. It happened to be half-price martini night, which I can only assume drew this type of crowd. Everyone stood in clusters with their martini's, an elegant drink gripped by the orange hands of big, confident men and curvy, insecure women. The women came in clusters. They stood close together putting on a good face for the muscles and greased hair surrounding them. They flashed open mouthed smiles at one another. Pulling up their strapless dresses just a little bit, their pants a little lower. The men in the room were oblivious. They talked to whomever they chose, flirting and pressing cheek against cheek. A quick joke into the ear, now a secret lost in time. It was as if the room were a junior high dance. The girls with their painted faces, shaved legs, and glossy hair sat on the bleachers of the gymnasium, watching enviously the couples on the dance floor.

I don't understand the bar scene. People go to bars to look for a partner, a one night stand, a kiss good night. They intoxicate themselves with alcohol, until they are no longer recognizable, even to themselves. Couples who meet at bars do not know the real person that they are talking with, they only know this mask that has been put on. They are looking for a good time, no strings attached. People go to find sex, not to find alcohol. From my experiences, this is true for men and women alike. I have been leered at by older men in bars who are drunk off loud music and beer. They ask for my phone number. I tell them no. They say, here's mine then. How about you send me a few dirty pictures once in a while, yea? Responding that you are in a relationship means nothing to these men, who are blinded by their alcohol inflicted confidence. A week later they will not remember what was said or done in that place. They will not remember the young, underaged girl they approached, nor their uncomfortable flirtations. For this reason, the cycle continues.

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