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The Art of Lying

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Joined: 10 Aug 2004
Posts: 6381
Location: Michigan
The Art of Lying  Reply with quote  

The art of lying. I hear people talk about that sometimes. About how it is such a skill to be able to convincingly lie. To make someone believe that you are waxing lyrical about the truth rather than pulling several layers of wool over their eyes or subverting them from finding out what lies beneath.

Of course, that's all bullshit. There is no art in lying. People do it every day. Take the work environment:

"How you doing?"
"Not bad, you?"

Not bad? Oh, except that the bank is foreclosing and my daughter is another teenage pregnancy statistic. Lying just to avoid telling someone stuff you don't want to talk about.

Or how about:

"Why were you late?"
"Traffic was bad."

And I overslept.

And I'm sure we've all experienced the miracle problem of everyone saying "Well, it wasn't me" when it must've been someone.

Now, you might say that these aren't skillful lies and yes, sometimes people don't believe them. But sometimes people do and even when they don't, they don't take it any further. Surely, that's the art...managing to blatantly lie and get away with it.

Of course, lies don't stop there. They can be bigger, badder, bolder. Lying to your doctor about having unprotected sex. Lying to your wife about having an affair. Lying about it being your father's fault. These lies aren't art. There is no art in telling them. The Cowardice of Lying. That exists. The Emptiness of Lying. That exists too. The Selfishness of Lying. That certainly exists. But the art? Art?

Art is to be admired. Art is to be hung on a wall or given pride of place in a reception hall. Art is to be displayed in galleries for all to see and enjoy. Art is to be inspirational. Lying is none of these things and no lie deserves such attention. A lie is hidden under the stairs or despised from a distance (but never close up). To call lying an art is to call a liar an artist and that is a travesty.

Lying is something we all do at some point and anyone who says otherwise is, well, a liar. But, most of the time it is justified in ourselves by the outcome: not wanting to bother a stranger with your lifes little details, trying to surprise a loved one, trying not to let the boss fire you just because you were up all night with a sick child and they're an uncaring manager looking to make cuts. When lying becomes your way of life, your art, then all is lost. As are you. Then and only then, does the liar deserve attention. Not to admire or enjoy, but to display and pity, for the liar's gallery is a lonely place. A place where you can't even face yourself with admiration.

The Art of Lying? There is no art, only loneliness.

2005 All Rights Reserved. JJY

Post Wed Aug 31, 2005 1:06 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
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