Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Liar, Liar - Pants On Fire

Time to explore new options and opportunities. No, I am not thinking about couple swapping or joining the circus, I am referring to updating my resume. In fact, it has been my intention to do this for quite some time now, but I am undecided on the ratio of facts, accomplishments, stretched truths, omissions, and down-right lies to include. After all, you only get one shot to make a good first impression. Whoever coined the phrase, "honesty is always the best policy" was a naive sucker, and the person who said, "the truth will set you free" was certainly out of their damn mind; just ask Martha Stewart.

I grew up with my mother giving me countless lectures on how important it is to tell the truth. But what one says, and what one does is not always the same. Case and example, when I was age five my mother decided it would be a good experience for me to join the YMCA Youth Summer Program. Only one problem, the minimal age requirement was age six. However, this small hurdle did not discourage my mother from placing her son into the program anyway; she merely duplicated my birth certificate and increased my age by one year. Lesson I learned from my mother, it is important to tell the truth 90 to 95 percent of the time, and fudge and or delete the truth 5 to 10 percent of the time. Now I know there are some of you who think deletions are not untruths, to which I say do not kid yourselves. When you intentionally leave out facts that would paint a more accurate description of the truth, plain and simple; you're lying. You may lie occasionally to others, but never lie to yourself.

Now, do not misconstrue what I am saying, I believe honesty and truth are very important. Without these qualities the very fabric and foundations of the relationships between our families, friends, co-workers and society in general would easily crumble. But, yes there is always a but, it is human nature to misrepresent the truth from time to time for the perceived benefit of the the greater good. Reasons include: gaining advantages in the work-place, avoiding legal actions and prosecution, securing entrance into a university or college, avoiding social ridicule (example, admitting you're gay or lesbian), protecting people's feelings, trying to impress, revenge, practical jokes, etc. In fact, most of us lie on a regular basis, much more than we realize, we just call them "white lies."

White lies are untruths that we deem socially acceptable, because they have minimal effects or consequences. These are the anecdotal stories that your grandfather tells while sitting on the front porch smoking a pipe recapping the story about how he helped storm the beaches at Normandy during World War II for the 1001 time. Each account seems to include some extra fabricated fact that was not included the time before. Women try to play the pretty and dumb role to get out of speeding tickets. Parents have attempted to pass their fourteen-year-olds off as twelve to get a child discount on movie tickets; hell, I occasionally still use my college identification card to get the student rate myself. How many times have you heard this one - "this won't hurt a bit?" Yeah right, maybe if I was void of nerve endings. This just goes to show you how much lying and shaded truth have become an acceptable part of our society. I do not think it is even possible to survive or function in today's society being completely (100%) honest about everything you say and do. If you say you can, you're lying right now.

Well with that said, I think my resume will include the following ingredients:
1. 1 cup of education
2. 2 cups of work-related experience
3. 1/2 cup of personal achievements
4. A generous helping of stretched truths
5. A teaspoon of lies for flavoring
6. And omission of all faults and weaknesses

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