A Rare Medium Well Done: 10.16.12
Sports Fan Insider
Editor’s note: Greggo doesn’t want us to edit this. So we won’t.
Noted essayist Samuel Butler wrote, “the best liar is he who makes the smallest amount of lying go the longest way”. And that begs the question: why do we accept lies from people of great importance?
Half-truths, exaggeration, fabrication, fibs, big-lie, BS’ing, noble-lie, white-lie, bold-face lie.
It seems our everyday life is consumed with not uttering the truth. And the sad part is that most folks while not outwardly endorsing lies, they certainly acquiesce accordingly. One of the basic tenets of life is to tell the truth. Yet we are raised at a young age to believe in Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny.I still remember the mental trauma when I found out they were but a myth.
We are in the midst of a presidential election where misleading and dissembling is part of the political process. Ethics be damned.
Literature is weighted and saturated with tales of lying. Carlo Collodi’s Pinocchio had a propensity to fib. But there was a price to pay. For every lie, his nose would mature in length. Ah yes, a consequence. Aesop’s fable, “The Boy who Cried Wolf”, the shepherd boy was never taken seriously by his ominous fiction. But soon the lupine appeared and destroyed the flock. More consequences. Chicken Little connived a contextual lie about the sky falling. It didn’t. But the moral was that Chicken Little’s fabrication was a result of misinterpretation. So I guess that’s allowed.
The lying game is a common thread in the sports cosmos. Or maybe it should be coined “gamesmanship”, or as Sun Tzu would declare, “all warfare is based on deception”. So coaches deceive. It helps them sleep better at night knowing they didn’t lie. But why do we allow this?
Yesterday as Jason Garrett met with the assembled press, he stated, “we have the best fans in the world”. Does he actually hold that as true? If he does then his obstacles are much deeper than a squandered 20 seconds. Garrett also boasted that cramps experienced by players in Baltimore were kindled by the “hot weather”. It was 67 degrees during the game. Not exactly the Sahara. And on Raven Jacoby Jones’ 108 yard mad dash to the end zone, he stated they had “several misses”. And they were “close to registering a negative return”. Jones was untouched and sped the distance in 12.9 seconds. Once again, taking supreme liberty with the art of trustworthiness.
Garrett is not the only coach to horse around with the truth. Borrowing from Thomas Hobbes’ “Leviathon”, he echoes that “in war, force and fraud are the two cardinal virtues. I guess that was what the Saints brain trust were employing as they denied the bounty existence not once, not twice, but three times when questioned. That’s taking virtue to heart.
Bill Clinton lied and stayed president. Richard Nixon lied and was forced from the presidency. OJ Simpson (allegedly) lied and got away with murder. Phil Specter lied and currently resides in the pokey. The great poker players are sports most renowned fibers. Lance Armstrong’s fantasy fabrication of the truth is spinning a web crushing his once throne of belief and hope. Roger Clemons and Barry Bonds were charged with perjury. Those are constitutional lies. Often met with dark disdain. Unless you can afford a wise defense attorney. Then it’s acquitted. Not innocent, just not guilty.
So as we cruise down the highway of life, look for the truth exits. Drive in the fact lane. Avoid the crooked road of dishonesty. Unless of course you’re trying to win a game. Or explain the weather was hot. Or as Lord Byron said, “And, after all, what is a lie? Tis but the truth in masquerade”.
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