I lied to someone the other day. Thankfully I was wearing fire retardant slacks. They asked me if I had seen their email. I had. Though I hadn’t read it yet. It was no more than a subject line in my inbox. It’s a stupid thing to lie about, isn’t it? I could have said that I had seen they had sent something but that I hadn’t had the chance to read it yet. Which was the truth. Instead, I felt like admitting this to them was somehow an admission of wrong doing. So I said I didn’t know what they were talking about and allowed them to explain it to me. Which they did. It was fine, really. Nothing awkward about the moment. But I knew what was going on. Which made it awkward for me. The decision to lie was made in record time. So quickly that I was lying before I had made up my mind to. Now, I’m a person who holds himself up to value the truth in all of its forms. Probably like you. I’ve told the truth about far more important things and refused to lie about even less important things. I’m telling the truth right now about how I didn’t tell the truth last week. Yet it was so easy not to in that moment. Effortless, like I had found a superpower that had been dormant since I crashed on this planet as an infant in 1979. That’s not totally true. I think I lied one other time in middle school.
Maybe you do things that you tell yourself you don’t do, too. Things you judge in others that you give yourself a pass on, if you even catch yourself doing them at all. Maybe the reality of who we are and the story of who we tell ourselves we are find themselves at odds.
Or maybe I’m just a liar who needs to care less about what others think of him.