Pants on fire

Yesterday, I was reading some blogs during lunch time, and came across a post on The Daily Tay titled “The lies we tell ourself on social media.

Social media has a lot of positives, such as a way outside of phone calls and face-to-face contact so as to keep in contact with friends and family.

With photos, however, Tay explained through the example of Essena O’Neill about how the trending people on social media can be basically fakers, particularly when photos are involved.

I commented on the post, saying the following:

Although I am usually honest on social media, when I am not, the dishonesty is always a result of omission instead of fabrication. I don’t see where lying gets a person, because once the bluff is called, ruin follows.

Sometimes, that omission on social media is a method of diplomacy. For example, if I have an explicit opinion of a specifically-named person (excluding family members), I leave it out of my blog and Facebook and Twitter, since those opinions can spread like wildfire. Of course, my modus operandi is not to spread negativity anyway. But my blunt honesty can catch people off-guard, especially in social media.

Then again, from what I notice on social media, most of the “faking” occurs with strongly-filtered photos in Instagram and suchlike media. Since my sharing is mostly text-based, I tend to be immune to the fake filters associated with photos. All of my photos from my phone or GoPro or camera are given as-is, with no Photoshop, color filters, or anything along those lines. (This excludes filters such as Twibbon.)

Then again, anything shared on social media certainly goes through some sort of filter. In my case, I tend to impulsively post commentary on grading or things that are funny to me in immediate context, even though it may be over everyone else’s head. That is my slice of life, and hopefully never comes across as irreverent or fake.

Part of the reason that I do not fabricate is, as I said in that comment, that once someone figures out that there is a lie, the person can be ruined. I know I have gotten in trouble for lying, because I cannot successfully lie.

A salient time that lying got me in trouble was back in 2004. When my siblings and I got cell phones, Mom and Dad required us to have them in our possession whenever we were out of the house. I went to work on August 28 and had left my cell phone in its charger at home. When I returned, I saw that there was a missed call, and I was the only one at home at that point. I listened to the message that Mom left, but didn’t return it.

When everyone else got home and Mom and Dad inquired about why I didn’t respond to the message, I tried to fabricate something about simply not checking my messages, but it was obvious to them that I was fibbing. Therefore, I got figuratively slapped with the red card, and was placed on probation (i.e., grounded) for a week.

Yet, I got off very easy, because they allowed me to go to the tournament that I was judging the following day, and allowed me to go to the Southeast football game on the Thursday of that week. Still, if I could rewind the clock back to that time, I would have liked to see how I would have been penalized if I had flat-out told the truth. (Obviously, the real thing to do would be rewind to before work and ensure that my phone was in my pocket!)

In that case, I actually lied when I said that I don’t fabricate. The password: Never say never.

(There it goes again. Ha!)

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Thanksgiving Day: 16 days.

Finals Week: 37 days.

Joint Mathematics Meetings: 57 days.

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