Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Susan's Shuso Blog: Not Lying
It is early morning. I have the overhead light on. The light causes my head to cast a shadow on the page.
What causes a shadow to fall on my uprightness? Often, I think it is the little white lie. Sometimes it is the inability to speak up for myself or for others when intervention might be helpful.
I am reading The Mind of Clover by Robert Aitken. In the chapter on lying, Aitken gives an example of how a child might learn honesty, or dishonesty, from a parent. If the parent tells the bus driver the child is five, instead of his real age of six, in order to pay less, the child learns it is okay to lie.
I was in my fifties when my hair turned grey. This gave me license, I thought, to get into the movies at the senior rate. I thought nothing of it. In fact I boasted about it. Now I would love it if someone carded me. "Are you sure you are a senior?" is a question I don't get anymore.
In the early '90s I tried to get into Bandelier State Park as a senior. I was 62. The cut-off age was 65. The ticket taker asked me to prove my age. How humiliating!
My little girl is ten years old. We are at the the Worlds Fair. She sees a make-up booth. She desperately wants to have her face made up. A beautiful young woman will put make-up on her face for free, but she must be 12 years old. I tell the woman my daughter is 12. She sees through my story. She tells my daughter she will make up her face but she must never, ever tell a lie again.
The woman is speaking to the mother who continues to get into the movies at the senior rate.