Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire
The hubby just returned a couple of weeks ago from an arduous off road motorcycle journey through the back country of British Columbia. It was brutal. He returned with a banged up bike, a couple of cracked ribs – and some great stories.
As he sat in a much needed bath, soaking in Epsom salt, he regaled me with tales of breathtaking scenery, ferry adventures, muddy, rutted roads, his epic falls (this is the guy who doesn’t fall) and all the laughs shared around the campfire at the end of each day with wine and great grub. I know most of this tribe, they are smart and funny and major badasses.
Unfortunately, no one was able to avoid dropping their big, heavy, overloaded bike.
But here’s the first rule of off road adventure riding: you just don’t talk about falling, about going down. And you NEVER name names.
It’s like fight club.
A couple of motorcycle journalists went along, to chronicle the ride for their various publications.
When the first article came out, as I read it, I couldn’t text my husband fast enough:
How much does it cost to have someone killed? This guy has broken the first rule!
I was joking, of course (sort of) but there it was, in print, the jerk mentioned the rough terrain, and my husband BY NAME, saying he had fallen twice.
“Of course he did” hubster replied over dinner that night.
“We got into it a couple of times. He’s a young, insecure know-it-all, and after awhile, when I heard him throwing inaccurate stories around about people I know, places I’ve been and courses I’ve taken, well, I corrected his facts and he didn’t like it. Hence,(he says hence in conversations – I swear) he felt the need to try to embarrass me. No biggie, we all know what went down. The fact is EVERYONE fell – parts of it were reduced to a mud pit.”
He was laughing and cringing; holding his left side.
Another journalist’s article came out last week and it was well written and more importantly, humorous and accurate.
Then, a couple of days ago, the first guy published a second piece.
It has now become his Hero’s Journey, with his bike the heaviest, (it wasn’t) his struggle the hardest, due to riding on street tires (they weren’t) and his proud claim that he was the only one who had the skills and wherewithal not to fall (WTF?)
Dude, it was already a really good story, you didn’t have to lie about it.
All the guys from the trip are emailing each other privately to vent, they’re too gentlemanly to publicly humiliate him by leaving comments on his website.
We all know why he did it. Insecurity, inferiority, blah, blah, blah…I don’t care.
Why do people lie? Especially when you have twelve other people out there that know the truth?
Now he’s just writing fiction. It’s the tale of “The Boy That Cried Hey, Have You Heard How Awesome I Am?”
Somebody really smart (I can’t remember who) said that most non-fiction is really fiction, because it come from the writer’s perspective. Hmmm…
I can’t stand lying.
When I write I do not lie. I may embellish (I didn’t really kick my Christmas tree until it begged for mercy, I stopped when it asked me politely the first time). But I write humor. Although, when I write about real people and real situations, I’m SO careful to depict them truthfully.
My stories aren’t written as vanity pieces, to make me sound good; on the contrary, most are cautionary tales of all my fuck-ups.
As I sat and stewed about this guy, I remembered some words of wisdom from my therapist, back in the day. She was a very beautiful and wise woman. Imagine Yoda and Oprah in the body of Candice Bergen.
1) “Janet, the biggest mistake you make in life, is thinking everyone feels and thinks JUST – LIKE – YOU. I can assure you, THEY DO NOT.”
That little nugget has saved me a lifetime of misery. My internal rules, dialogues, morals, and views on life are mine and mine alone. If I want others to know them, I have to communicate them.
Which brings me to:
2) “Janet, you’ve gotta cut people some slack, they’re not mind readers.”
This one needs no explanation.
Although, the guys do have a kind of Jedi mind meld about their rules of the road. They are un-discussed, yet understood – apparently with the exception of a certain Pinocchio.
3) I truly believe – with all my heart – that liar’s pants – should actually CATCH ON FIRE.
There. I vented. I feel so much better.
Have you heard or caught someone in an epic lie? Something that made them sound awesome, while trashing everyone else? Share please.
Big, group hug,