I have always being good at telling lies without feeling a morsel of remorse for my surname. I consider it an art which needs perfection. I feel to be a successful liar one needs to believe that they are saying the truth. Now, this is not a-tell-all-tale or nor is it an open-ended discussion on a Freudian scale. I would just like my readers to walk through a life of a serial liar.
My mom was the first person who harshly criticized me for my behaviour, and every time she found out that I lied for some instance or the other she would sigh and say that she was going to be criticised for her upbringing. Mom, you did just fine. At a young age I was inured into the morals taught by my parents and what was being taught at the school. Unlike the kids at my age, I loved going to the school and was eager on various subjects, I was what you could say a geeky first bencher and a teacher’s pet. I loved social studies and science, history was never boring to me.The big picture was visible to me. When my friends discussed the irrelevance of history in one’s life, I used to openly admit that I liked it. Im sure I would have had a Kiss-ass aura around me, where in fact it was just plain ignorance.I would go on to say I was the alpha kid of my class, I remember winning the first place in every competition held, Just like in the movies.
As I got older and social customs started changing.At an age when whining when visitors came in to house was considered acceptable behaviour, ceased to exist. I was taught to be nice to the relatives, enquire about their health, bring them food and serve them to be accepted as a responsible kid. Though I did not detest these activities, I wasn’t very inclined. It took time for me to adjust or learn etiquettes as parents used to say. I used to be hushed and pointed at by my uncles saying that I was a brat and I shouldn’t behave so with elders and look upon my mom with condescending eyes.And I had to endure my parent’s sermon afterward, so feigning was an acquired trade.
I couldn’t understand this, if lying was sin why did my mom speak nicely to neighbours and relatives who were downright irritating and insolent? Why to put up with others tantrum with a smile while all you want to give is a tight slap or a sharp repartee?. But I guess I understood that people like to be treated nicely even if they didn’t deserve it. My friends never had any such dilemmas they were more sincere about getting good grades, exchanging wwe cards,leering at girls , avoid going to tuitions etc…Even during my high school days I had this sense of self-righteousness.
I never abused any one, never was a part of a brawl and never did anything that would get me into trouble.But I hung in a limbo between being “cool” and being a successful “geek”. But it all gradually changed and I started to feign my reactions to things around me. It got me that social acceptance, not that I wanted it. Just that I wasn’t comfortable sticking out like a sore thumb.
I have attention phobia and get two left feet if I realize that I stand apart in a crowd out of awkwardness. I made really good friends even though I shared a very little of their interests and passion. I was shell-shocked during my initial college days and I did not get any “johnny come lately” reactions. I was taunted, ridiculed and misquoted a lot. But I am no rebel as it requires too much effort, faking and feigning were a lot easy and it came to my rescue. I saw people doing lots of things to get attention, so I thought why not feign and blend with the crowd to avoid attention! Towards the final year I had quite a few friends and loads of acquaintances. I was never “the” topic of discussion and frankly the lack of attention had a tepid feeling towards it. I liked it, and I was cozy as a reindeer in summer.
When the professional life began I was armoured to the teeth.Every one around me feigned, lied, bitched and a lot of them were victims of circumstances. When my colleagues moaned when their seniors took away their credits, all I could afford was a sheepish grin. My friends felt a culture shock working in bigoted and competitive competition and many of them burned out. I wasn’t and I even feigned the irritation and the restlessness to great success. At a time when they became angry young youths, questioning the odd hours of work, unequal work distribution and biased appraisals.
I was completely over this and at peace, for I knew well before them as I am close to being a virtuoso at this. I will never burn down or get lost in this mayhem of lies and deceit that lies in the corporate world, as I have my expecto patronus with me.
The worst lies are the lies we tell ourselves. We live in denial of what we do, even what we think. We do this because we’re afraid. We fear we will not find love, and when we find it we fear we’ll lose it. We fear that if we do not have love we will be unhappy.
Richard Bach [Author of “Johnathon Living Seagull”]