Play Nice

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Thanks,
Patricia

Briefly

[This is where the summary would go if I'd bothered to write one.]

« Worryinggrooving »
You don’t know me

I.

You don’t me. You may think you do, but you don’t. How could you? When all I’ve ever told you is lies. Are you surprised? I bet you are. I didn’t intend on telling you lies, but once I started it was hard to stop. I was playing this mean little game. Wondering if you would be able to tell the lies from the occasional truths I told you. Testing you. Are you angry? I would be. I wouldn’t blame you if you were.

The ironic thing is that I’m not a liar. Not anymore at least. I used to be. A horrible one. Not horrible in the sense that I wasn’t good at lying. I am a very good liar. I sound proud of that, don’t I? I know. In a sick way I am. I used to lie about everything. It wasn’t even a conscious thing. People would ask me the most inane questions and I would find myself spouting out lies.

You’re probably wondering how I kept everything straight. See, the thing about a good liar is that one learns not to embellish. You give just enough details to satisfy the person, but not so many that you can’t keep track. And all of that silliness about people looking to the left when they’re lying? Not true.

So why am I telling you now? I don’t know. I’m tired I suppose. It’s selfish, all of this. I lied because I wanted to. I’m telling you the truth now simply because I want to. You’re right. How can you trust me again. You’re right to wonder that. I can’t answer that for you. You’ll have to decide that for yourself.

II.

You don’t know me. You may think you do, but you don’t. I have one of those faces that people are always confusing with their old boyfriends or long lost cousins. We dated? Are you sure? Because I think I would remember you. When? Yeah, I was in Detroit in ‘93. Who did you say introduced us? Yeah, yeah, I remember Stevie. I haven’t thought about him in years! Does he still hate for people to call him Stevie? No, I’m not trying to change the subject. I’m sorry that you’re hurt. I didn’t mean to imply that you’re not memorable. You seem like a lovely - Ok. You are a lovely person. Sure, I remember that. It’s coming back to me. I have a horrible memory. I barely remember my own name most days. Yeah, sure. We should get together. Why don’t you give me your number - Oh, ok. Yeah, here’s my number. Even better. You call me. We’ll do something. Great. Say hi to Stevie for me. Tell him he still owes me a beer.

III.

You don’t know me. You may think you do, but you don’t. You don’t even know yourself. You’re always spouting out all this psychological mumbo-jumbo about knowing one’s self and inner motivations. Meanwhile things are happening all around you and you can’t see it. You hear but you’re not listening!

You do a good job of fooling people though, don’t you? Nodding your head and saying all those pat little phrases. People think you’re so sweet and caring, but I know better. No, I won’t calm down. What? You think using that monotone voice is going to work on me? I’ve taken the same classes you have, remember? The only difference is that I don’t hide behind dead psychologists. Don’t go psychoanalyzing me. I know what’s wrong with me. I’ve stayed around too damn long. That’s what’s wrong with me. Do you even know why I’m angry? Do you? No, of course you don’t. That would mean you were actually listening. And we already know you’re no good at that. That’s right. You go on thinking I’m being irrational. While you browse through your sacred little self-help books I’m going to be in the bedroom packing. I’m sick of this. I’m sick of you. And most of all I’m sick of me for sticking around for so long in this loony bin.

Published 10/23/02 in Writing • | Views: 2019 times | Print



you, my dear chuckles, are a very smart man.

Posted by patricia  on  10/24  at  11:44 AM

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