Monday, April 10, 2017
Today I am grateful for truth. I’ve been thinking an awful lot about the truth these days. When you reach a certain age, you think long and hard before asking your spouse if a certain shirt makes you look fat. They might tell you the truth, which you already know, or you wouldn’t have asked. Savvy husbands the world over have learned to dodge that one with, “I like you better in blue.” So you better change your shirt.
Don’t believe all of the “truths” you hear out in the world, or social media, or advertising, either. When I hear billion-dollar-Oprah talking about how “you can do anything you want if you just want it badly enough” I could smack her with my yet-to-purchase toe shoes! I don’t think so, Oprah. I will never be a ballerina. I can still love ballet. But I don’t yet have to give up on writing a best seller, or a stint on Broadway either, so there. Who knows?
Look, like it or not, we all fudge the truth a little bit sometimes. But it’s the chronic liar that really pisses me off. You know the one. That person in your life, or your world who is never, ever. . .not ever wrong. About the smallest thing or huge things. They create lie after lie to cover up their insecurity and/or incompetence. I don’t like that. It bothers me. I wonder why lately I so often question “but is it the truth”? I’ve pondered. I’ve ruminated. When it looks like I’m doing nothing, I’m thinking about the truth. So I’ve been giving it to my subconscious mind to worry over. And trying to live a truthful life. Because I much prefer the truth.
I have to. I write and post a “gratitude” story almost every day. I can’t tell you how many people, some of them nearly strangers, follow my stories. They come up to me and say, “When you wrote about. . .(whatever). . .that really moved me because I had an experiences with. . .” We comment back and forth about my experience and theirs. Sharing. If I had lied in my story, how would I ever remember what I had said?
I’m not talking about the occasional. . .okay, frequent if you’re a creative type. . . “embellishment”. If you’re a good story teller you HAVE to embellish a story at least a little bit. It is a true art to do so enough to make it great and give the reader the emotion you feel when telling it, but not so much as to make it untrue. After all, stories come from human emotion and everyone’s emotions are perceived in a different way.
Sometimes Himself reads a story I’ve written about him and he thinks he comes off looking like an asshole. Then I have a bunch of people tell me how great he is and how lucky I am (I know) based on the same story that he thought painted him a different way. It’s the truth. But it’s also perception. His. Mine. And yours.
We all know compulsive liars. Those people who can’t remember what the last lie was, so they spin it into another lie, and another, and another, until not only is the truth lost forever, the lie actual starts to feel like the truth. To them. Not to us. Because if we are smart, we can see right through them. Eventually they will be too stupid to keep up with their own lies. And we know the truth. Who wins in that scenario? No one.
Yup. I’ll stick with the truth. Just don’t ask me if I like that ugly blouse you decided to wear. And if I say I like you better in blue. . .don’t ask again!