I love lying to people, mostly my sons. If I was to be believed, Darth Vader built the Death Star on our 5 acres (right behind my shop), I used to be a Transformer until an accident at the power plant turned me into a human, I have a ninja on speed-dial on my phone who is ready 24/7 to fight crimes I encounter, I invented Legos one rainy Sunday and, coincidentally, I can both speak to and understand all animal life forms. These traits give me great credibility within the home, right up to the point where The Wife betrays me in favor of the truth. I curse her name when she does this. She has to, though, because I come by this capacity naturally, thanks to my father, The Lyin’ Dutchman. I grew up in a household where certain fabrications were spun out that we, his boys, were to take as gospel on pain of ostracization. An example, you say? Here are seven examples for you to consider:
- Pink Floyd , Supertramp and ABBA were Dutch bands (this is because my father is Dutch-Indonesian, hence, all things good in this world are, by default, Dutch. All bad things – well, those are usually Japanese, in his eyes)
- All major BMX stars purchase their bikes at Pep Boys Auto Parts, which is, coincidentally where my Huffy Thunder Road with the banana seat and get-your-ass-kicked fenders was bought.
- He invented the layout of the circuit board
- He got citizenship early from President Kennedy himself
- MIT was “a decent college”…..he’s a graduate, despite any sort of diploma or evidence of this education.
- He served as a tank commander in Korea ~ we’re not sure which country he was serving, none dared to ask.
…………..and most recently (as related by Bones, another of my five brothers):
- He invented the navigational strobe beacon found on aircraft as early as the 1940’s. Quite the achievement for someone under the age of ten.
Now, this might seem rude and crass to utilize this public forum to call out the old man for his fabrications, but I would argue to the contrary. If anything, they made growing up under his roof one constant adventure in fish tales. Yes, confusion reigned, especially when we dared to question the validity of his claims. A sad turn of events has led to the invention of the internet and search engines such as Google, thus making it easier to refute claims such as a long-referenced semi-professional soccer career (“stop being such a smart-ass. I was a pro. End of story.”) No, it was much simpler to weave a fabric of fabrication in the 70’s and 80’s, a fact not lost on me.
So now I’m faced with children who will have the ability to research my claims of leading a zombie army in the overthrow of a hostile military junta in South America way back when. But rather than being intimidated by technology spoiling my animated stories, I relish the challenge of working around inconvenient truths. After all, part of the reason I became a father was to experience the thrill of lying to my kids in order to look cool. Some may label me a bullshit artist, but I prefer to go by “Dad”.