To celebrate this year’s July 4, I decided I would lie all day. I’m not referring to recumbency, but to incumbency, The zeitgeist demands prevarication, even if it is a five-syllable word. Zeit is German for swamp, geist means gas.
Lying is not as simple as it appears, especially if you are ambivalent about it, i.e, have some morality around it. Thou shalt not and such. Some of my friends claim they never lie. Some are proud of their knack for it.
On my way to the J-Church I saw a bumpersticker that read, Life is a Pitch. I had to wonder, which is it, a curve ball, black tar, a downward slope,a rectangle in which Nigeria will win the 2022 World Cup, or a musical tone? Definition 5 in Webster’s Seventeenth Collegiate trumps the others: to utter with glib insincerity. Achtung. Zeitgeist.
I had not gotten as far as Church Street and embarked on my prevaricative orgy before questions arose. First of all, I regret to say that my life is so humdrum that there really is very little to lie about. I wouldn’t even call what I do lies. Fibs. Little beige lies. What everybody does. You look so much younger. Of course I can deduct those meals. Not prime fib, for sure.
You work with what you have. My question was, how believable should the lies be? There is a trope that says the best lies have an element of truth, but our president took that down with so much else. For instance I planned on telling the protest choir I didn’t bring my accordion because of having a sore back. Now I have a sore back so that was true but it wasn’t the reason I didn’t bring my accordion. If I had really wanted to bring it I would have schlepped it the 5 blocks to the J-Church and schlepped it back home and my back would have been no worse and no better. Why did I not want to bring my accordion? Because I have gotten so good that I might overwhelm my comrades with my improvement. I am that humble.
The plan was to meet with the protest choir in Dolores Park at 12:30 under the statue of Hidalgo, Liberador de Mexico and the plan happened as planned. Now that doesn’t always happen, especially now that we are so connected electronically. Somehow it’s easier to get lost. For instance, what was the Liberador de Mexico rising grandly on his pedestal above Dolores Park doing there? Especially on July 4th. Reaching into his pocket for his smartphone.
Our first song is always, You Can Get it if You Really Want, a prevarication if I ever heard one but a damn good song. Jimmy Cliff would be amazed how well I play it now. While we were rocking away, up the slope came a group of ten or so girls, every one with skinny legs up to their armpits, a herd of gazelles. They came over and started stepping to the beat. They were like a mirage from a better world, although the world of Dolores Park in the early afternoon sunshine was not bad either. Where were they from? Senegal, they said. They had to be lying.
Below on the soccer pitch the Mime Troupe was getting set up for their annual Fourth of July show. I didn’t stay to watch the show. I told my comrades I wanted to wander, but all I did was walk home and write this.