Lies, and Not Telling Them

I acted like a guy off the telly one time and it really stuck with me.

I don’t tell lies. Lets just get that first lie right out the way. Of course I do, anyone that says otherwise is a liar. You ever respond with “not bad” when someone asks how’s it going even though it’s 2020? Exactly.

Let’s go to the TV show Lie to Me. Decent show, great concept, go watch it. Anyway there’s this one lad in it called Loker

A headshot of Brendan Hines as Eli Loker from the TV show Lie to Me

His thing is that he always tells the truth, a concept called Radical Honesty. I read the book and thought it was a bit much. I scaled the idea back and decided to tell no ‘real’ lies - The only lies I’ll tell are the things nobody cares about, the “not bad aye” sort of lies that make up social situations.

Everything else is truthful, as best it can be. If I tell you your hair is amazing today, it is. If I say you helped me out with xyz, you really did. It goes on from there in that manner.

Just to note here it’s also important to me the truth isn’t used to manipulate, even if it is indeed the truth. There’s no hidden meaning behind me saying truthful things. I’m not after a raise at work, or a favour from a friend, or whatever thing is relevant to the thing I said - If there’s an underlying reason for spontaneous truth I’d consider that in of itself a lie. It’s just a false motive lie instead of a false words one.

Back to the point. Lies require mental effort. You need to come up with a lie, remember the lie, remember who you told the lie to.. it’s just so unneccesary.

Lets come up with a nice simple lie. Saturday I sat in the garden.

Now say one of my mates asks me what I got up to at the weekend. Just chilled in the garden with a beer, not really got up to much. The weekend comes round and you’re planning to do stuff. They really enjoyed your story of sitting in the garden doing nothing and it sounded like a great idea. Beers round yours?

Now here’s where I throw a spanner in the works - you have no garden furniture. Sucks about the beers round yours in the garden but hang on - How were you sitting in the garden if you don’t have garden furniture?

Nah no can do this weekend lads, because .. and now you need another lie to patch the original lie to fit into reality.

When you invent your lie you need to invent a universe where the differences between reality and your lie are completely patched with no loose threads. Are you a fiction author? Why are you trying to build a universe?

Of course once you’ve thrown that second lie into the works then that lie too has its own patches that need constantly maintaining. Any sub-lies of that lie, and those lies, and those lies’ lies all need this mental maintenance. Eventually you’ve gone and got yourself a web of lies to deal with.

A detective looking at a wall which has pins with strings between them

You trying to figure out if you can hang with Joe this weekend.

It’s a lot of brain power to put behind something you could have just said “nah, didn’t do anything”.

I know the lie in the example is just.. shite. It really is. I know. Nobody except a select few people I know in real life would ever come up with a lie this shockingly boring. The point is each lie you tell brings in at best a bunch of stuff you have to remember and at worst an out of control snowball of lies.

I used to be a liar. Massive liar as it happens. Ok that oversold it, I was an average liar. I’d mainly tell sort of stories that only happen to occur when there’s nobody else to vouch for them. Why bother doing cool things when you can just say you did them and have nobody call you out on it?

Well because almost 15 years later I’m still keeping those lies refreshed. Something will remind me of a time which reminds me of a time in which I told a lie.. I can’t even go out to the people I lied to and correct myself retroactively because who cares at this point? 15 years and I’ve still got lies rolling around in case they’re ever referenced

It’s much less mental effort to tell the truth all the time as it turns out. Why bother lying?

I realise writing an entire blog post about me not lying makes it look like I’m totes lying all the time. Also this is a very mmmmm-meeeeeee but it’s my site go visit some other site haha

Heya! I’m Cohan and I make PHP-based websites. I also administer Linux servers and do other nerdy stuff like that.
In my more creative moments I’m writing a comedy film. As ye do.
A picture of me.