Speaking Plainly



Years ago I was trapped by the thought that everything I say is a lie. Well not an exact lie. More like, I couldn’t trust that the words coming out of my mouth were an accurate portrayal of my true thoughts. I believed my ego was always getting in the way and distorting what I really meant to say. Even if only slightly. As a result I went through a period where everything I said was extremely measured. When asked a question, I would stare blankly, trying to choose the exact words. Many times I could find no translation for my thoughts and so I would continue staring blankly:


Say something! 


I can’t think of what I wanted to say!

What was the word I was trying to find?...


No, that’s not it cuz I don’t even know what that means...

Good grief, I still haven’t said anything yet...

This pause has been much too long!

Has my mouth been open the entire time?...

Crap, crap, crap!

Wait I think it was, Flagnon!

No that’s not it either cuz that’s a word I just made up...

Sweet baby Jeebus help me...

I’m going the hell OOOWWWWT!!!...

As a result, I think my boss at the time thought I was an idiot.

Really, I think I was just reading too many books. So let that be a lesson to you boys-n-girls, books will fill your head with way too many ideas. Eventually, your brain won’t be able to handle them all and it will stop working.

Now you know.

After that I tried mental telepathy.

That didn’t work.

Since telepathy, (Or flight. Or laser eye beams for that matter), didn’t seem to pan out, I got into the habit of speaking my thoughts indirectly. I couldn’t quite tell you what I was thinking, but I could tell you what my thoughts were “like” by describing adjacent thoughts. Through the use of analogies and stories, I would outline the contours. My real thoughts though, lie somewhere in the middle of what I wasn’t saying.

My wife was the first of a select few to understand my cryptic way of speaking. I would often ask, “Do you know what I’m saying?” And she would say, “Yes. I do.” I would then ask, “O.K., What am I saying?” (Mostly cuz at that point I wasn’t quite sure.) She would go on to describe perfectly what I was only able to hint at.

She calls what I do, “circular talking”. “You start out at one point and at first what you’re saying sounds absolutely ridiculous, stupid and dumb.” “Whoa!, ridiculous, stupid AND dumb?”, I protested. “All three? At once?”. “Yes. All three. At once.”, She said assuredly. You do eventually make your way back around to where you started and somehow it all actually makes sense. Now that I'm used to it, I can tell by how you start, where you’re going to end up.”

“Really?”, I said. “I guess that’s comforting cuz sometimes I have no idea where I’m going to end up...

Did I say sometimes?

I meant a lot of times.

Did I say a lot of times?

I meant always.”

After successfully mastering “circle talking”, I hit upon the idea of saying exactly the opposite of what I really think. Rather than simply hinting at my ideas, I figure if I speak perpendicularly, my true thoughts will be revealed in sharp contrast. I mean, anyone can say exactly what they’re thinking, right?


Some people call what I do, “lying.”

I prefer to call it, “speaking at right angles”

To people who know me, my true thought is at the endpoint. Others though, end up chasing the ray of my opposite-thought off into infinity. If you don’t know me well, I WILL send you off in the wrong direction. The only problem with this is, most folks tend to ignore about 80% of what I say.

Audwin The Black Belt said, “If you’re not careful, everyone on facebook is going to think you’re an a%&hole, which couldn’t be further from the truth.” There are two things I think about his statement: One; what is “truth”?; And two; That’s what they get for being dummies. Ironically, this might actually prove the point that I may be an a%&hole.

Recently I read a book called, Satan; An Autobiography. I have to admit, I did get a bit worried when I found myself identifying with everything the character of Satan was saying. I read a particular passage out loud to my wife. “Does that sound like me?”, I asked. “Yes.”, she said, “That sounds exactly like you.” “Flagnon! that’s the Satan character!!!”

My wife gave me a, I-don’t-know-why-any-of-this-is-surprising-to-you, kind of look.

Like I said, the book alarmed me. But not enough for me to stop doing what I do.

My wife said, “Don’t come crying to me when you end up in hell. I’m not coming to get you out! After this life is over, I will have fulfilled my tour of duty.”

I suppose there is a bit of danger in continuing to speak as obliquely as I do.

Then again who knows. Everything I just said is prolly one big lie.

It’s hard to tell anymore.