When was the last time you told a lie? It was about five minutes ago, wasn’t it?
Hopefully it was a little white ‘the bus was late’ type fib and not ‘I did not have sexual relations with that woman’ style barefaced deceit. Don’t feel too bad; we’re all lying our arses off all the time (Although if you did have sexual relations with that woman, you should feel bad, very bad indeed, ya cheating fecker!)
Fraud starts when we’re tiny, when we’re mostly the victims of lies, or lyees if you will. I blame the parents. They will tell their children anything for an easier life, ranging from the innocent (carrots give you x-ray vision), to the ominous (that’s not an ice-cream van, it’s the child-catcher). But, giving parental types the benefit of the doubt, most of their little inaccuracies aim to protect or entertain. Siblings on the other hand… the lies they tell are intended only to upset, torture and mentally scar.
My brother is a rather good liar. They say it’s all in the detail, and he has an active (and sometimes disturbing) imagination. One of my earliest memories is of him telling me I was the only person in the world without a willy, because my mother had dropped me on a chainsaw when I was a baby. I believed this for what must have been several weeks or months (I felt quite special god love me) and his ruse was only rumbled when I casually asked my mother about her willy one day.
Slightly more traumatic was him telling our small nephew that Bosco was dead. Run over by a truck while out riding his Harley Davidson apparently. Oh the tears!
[For the non-paddies amongst you, Bosco was a squeaky-voiced, woolly-haired hand puppet beloved by generations of Irish children].
The old ‘you’re adopted’ is quite a common one, so it wasn’t good enough for my loving, caring, nurturing siblings. As I’m the only ginger in the family, they told me I came from the knackers. The story goes (note the present tense) that the family were out for a drive one day, passed a halting site and a baby (me) came flying through the window. So they kept me, and I am still known affectionately by my gypsy name at home. And what I said earlier about parents generally lying for the benefit of their child? Well they also do it for their own amusement. My parents were, and are, only too happy to verify this story. In fact I think they might have started it…
But it’s all good character-building stuff I tell myself (and maybe some day, a psychiatrist). Excuse me while I go and rock in the corner for a while… Only joking! Those driveways aren’t going to tarmac themselves.