Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Gentle Readers,

Why lie?

I can tell you why I have. There's Why, no, I can't tell you've gained weight. And there's Wow, I love your outfit. That color is great on you.

I also lied to protect myself as in I didn't touch that dish. I don't know who broke it.

However, I was never the kind of mom who lied to my kids in order to get them to do things. Long, long ago, I had a terrible pain in my stomach and side and my mom told me to eat the square of Hershey's chocolate she had brought me. I was six or seven years old and something told me this was not Hershey's chocolate, but I was under orders and I ate the thing, which turned out to be Ex-Lax. I had an emergency appendectomy later that night.

You may ask, Are the two related? I don't know, but I suspect Ex-Lax is to blame for many of the world's problems.

As the lies continued over the years, and I became more and more jaded, I decided I would not do the same thing to my kids. So it really pissed me off when they went to school and guess who told them lies?


This child, not mine but somebody else's yet for some reason she called me mom, came to me during the fifth-grade anti-drug education program and said Mrs. Blugblug tells us over and over that sooner or later we'll be at a party and someone will come up to us and give us something and tell us to take it and it will be drugs. I responded, Never in my entire life has anyone given me drugs at a party and ordered me to take them. Furthermore, when I was in high school and some of the boys I knew smoked pot, they went out of their way to be kind to me and share with me and say it wasn't necessary for me to smoke any, so I joined right in I never smoked any.

That kinda reminds me of one of my favorite Sex and the City episodes when the police catch Carrie smoking a doobie and she gets out of it by showing the officer the post-it note that Berger used to break up with her. My boyfriend broke up with me with a post-it note. Waaah.

But, ah, I digress.

That same kid I knew had a teacher who yelled at the class all the time about how they'd better be ready for the state's standardized testing and it was extremely important to do well, blah blah blah. She was sick of being shouted at day after day and the stress had her teary eyed and upset constantly. So I told her the truth: You don't get a score on the test. It's meant to judge the school and the teacher so do whatever you want.

She smiled and we never talked about the test again. I have no idea if she made an effort on the stupid test or if she blew it off.

Now, a story about a kid who definitely belongs to me, but this was not a case of the teacher lying. Favorite Young Man was in first or second grade when he brought home a letter from the PTA warning students and parents that a certain item enjoyed by children was, in fact, a means of giving them LSD. I'm not going to say what it was because I don't want to get this hoax fired up again. It was around for years, and there wasn't even an internet then.

I called the PTA person who had distributed the letter and told her nicely that this was a hoax and I had read about it in Newsweek. She actually argued with me and told me it never hurt to warn kids about drugs. I said that when we warned kids, we should be telling them the truth because if they find out we're lying then they have no reason to believe us in the future. She said, Well it came from the state police.

So I called the state police and mentioned it to the bored guy who answered the phone, and he finally said, Oh yeah, we did get something that said blahblahblah isn't true.

But nobody ever made a retraction or explained it was an error.

Years late, a member of a county-wide Citizens Advisory Committee (to the schools) informed me that they were going to announce they would advocate that students had to wear uniforms to school. Then when people complained, they were going to say Let's have a dress code instead, and get what they wanted by lowering their demand.

She told the wrong person. I said, It's never wise to begin an endeavor with a lie.

I think it's one of the few times someone listened to me because no announcement came from the committee, and if one had, I would have been all over it with the truth.

Yes, I've lied. I've lied to protect other people and myself. But when my bank accidentally deposited $1000 in my account twice and I had only made one deposit, I alerted the bank.

I feel as if I've rambled quite a bit today. I guess the morals of my story are Don't let lies get out of control and Just because information comes from teachers or the police, it isn't necessarily true. And if you get caught smoking a doobie, tell the police your boyfriend used a post-it note to break up with you.

Why doesn't spell check recognize doobie? Isn't that a common usage?

Anyhoo, teachers who frighten and harass and harangue students with lies are out of control.

Maybe I failed as a teacher because I was too honest.

Infinities of love,



  1. You didn't fail as a teacher. You failed as a politician. As every teacher knows, political skills are necessary for keeping your teaching job.

    Clearly, you are too honest to be a politician.

  2. Why thank you my dear LegalMist.



Got your panties in a bunch? Dig 'em out, get comfortable, and let's chat.