My new favorite quote is by Robert Byrne, a man I currently feel a very close kinship to. I'm sure he learned this the hard way too.
"In order to preserve self-respect, it is sometimes necessary to lie and cheat." (Smart man!)
And particularly more so to lie.
And frankly, even when it's got nothing to do with preserving your self-respect, but because even if you don't, people will lie to you anyway. They will find reasons and excuses to lie to you because people have such deep inclination to lie that they will do it even when it's completely unnecessary. And even when there are no major different consequences of telling a lie or the truth, they will still choose to pick the first because it comes so much more naturally to them.
It's stupid to be truthful. It's important to lie to people because it's just plain nasty to lie to people so people who do lie deserve to have the same nastiness back. And why should anyone strive so hard to be truthful anyway? It's obvious that no one can be truthful to you! Why should I make any effort to be real when the world and the people around me are ALL false?
I'm not talking about the occasional 'Oh I have to take my dog to the vet and therefore have to leave work early while I'm really just spending the afternoon with my boyfriend' kind of lie. I'm talking about the kind of lie that has the potential to hurt you because of the simple fact that you are being lied to kind of lie. The really mean and sucky and ugly kind.
I only owe it to God to be truthful, and with that I don't even have a choice because I can't lie to God anyway. And as for the rest, I am henceforth going to adopt a new outlook to life - I will sprinkle a little bit of love and lie everywhere I go. And neither I nor the people I lie to will be none the worse for it. It'll just make things fairer and even. I'm going to turn lying into an art form.
And incidentally - it's so good to not be in school anymore! I know what my English teacher would have said if I had turned this post in as an exam paper. I can just see it -
"Jerusha, how many times does the words 'lie' and 'people' appear in this post?"
(trembling knowing I am in trouble) "I don't know Sir.."
"Count the lies" :P
(I count - but I'm not really counting now - so let's pick a random number - 22)
"22 times Sir"
"Do you think that's alright? Do you think it's okay that you used 'lie' 22 times here? What have we learned about repeated words and using the same word over and over again?"
"What do you think of your paper? Do you think you've done a good job?"
"Why then did you not try to make it better?"
(Lying) "I was not feeling well Sir"
"Would you like to work on it again and show me you can do better?"
(Lying) "Yes Sir"
"Here, take it back and work on it tonight, and don't come and tell me you were not feeling well again!"
(Lying) "Thank you Sir"
I half wish I was in this situation now just so I can tell him no I'm not really thankful and no I don't want to work on it anymore, and I think it's okay that I used the word 'lie' 22 times and that the same word being repeated many times over doesn't bother me and I'd do it again and I hate Celine Dion and I hate your moustache and even though you think it's unfeminine for schoolgirls to listen to Metallica I still listen to them everyday!
He was okay. School was okay. We learned useful things. But damn, don't you hate it that they tried to tell you what you should like and MUST NOT like, define your tastes in music and clothes and life in general and your overall opinion of people and also try to act as your religious teachers!
They did need a bit of lying to.