Well, this is going to be my last Friday Fib of my own. I love hearing these stories from other people, though and would love to keep this weekly feature going. If you have a story about telling a fib, PLEASE email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will feature it (unless it's gross or wildly inappropriate).
This last story is all the way back from 2005. It was after this experience that I had resolved to be more honest. Just a few clarifying points: The biology class I was taking was "Field Biology" which meant we spent one class a week in lecture, and the rest of the classes outside. Also, I went to an LDS University where we called our professors "Brothers" and "Sisters" rather than professor.
Dear Brother Wall,
So there I was, all ready for a new block in my summer semester. What was I going to lie about in my classes this time? In my winter classes, I introduced myself as "Tim" and I still hear that name shouted in my direction across campus. Last block a girl asked me about a scar on my foot and I told her I had a tumor removed. She believed me. So this block I was thinking: "exactly how far can I go with some of my stories?" It's not that I lie about important things. Mostly just weird things that I think I'll get some sort of sick kick out people's reactions. I usually end up telling the truth in the end.
I was thinking about what I was going to do next. I remembered when I went out to eat and pretended I was from Italy with some unknown accent. Italy was too well known for that accent. So my roommate and I decided that when we changed our voices we would either say we were from Belarus or Croatia because, well, no one knew anything about those countries.
One night, I told my roomie that I should just go to my one class (BIO 118) with that accent and pretend all block that I was from Croatia. What a story that would be for the kids: "once, in college, everyone in my biology class thought I was from Croatia." My roommate looked me dead on and told me that I didn't have the guts. She said that I would never do it. Then double dog dared me to introduce myself with that accent to everyone I met the following day- with an emphasis in my one class. If you know me at all- I don't turn down a good dare.*
I went to class and with brave face introduced myself to all the students and teacher in my accent. I even had to stand up. All eyes were on me. I said I was from Croatia. Brother Wall asked how long I had lived in Boise, Idaho. Now I've lied to my fair share of people. If I didn't have a testimony, I'd probably be a con artist. I know when people don't believe me. And Brother Wall did not believe my accent. When I said I lived in Croatia for a while he looked down. Why doesn't he believe me? Then he said:
"We had a student live with us for a year from Croatia."
Panic ran over me. How could this happen? This one teacher I have and he just so happened to live an entire YEAR with someone from the one random, RANDOM country I chose. I knew how to cover it. Ask where the student was from and pretend you know where that is. Instead, I just said "oh." and sat down. I wanted to leave. Brother Wall knew Croatians's and their accents- and he knew that my accent was from nowhere.
To my despair, I had to talk to him about driving the school vans after class. He saw that I was nervous and asked if it was okay if I drove my fellow students around this semester. My sense of humor didn't come out with my accent. I said sarcastically: "Just another opportunity to kill people." With the accent, however, I ended up sounding like some terrorist from Croatia- sent to roll vans at BYU-Idaho. I jetted out of the class embarrassed, humiliated and anxious to tell my funny story of learning my lesson to everybody.
So Brother Wall, that's what happened. I'm not from Croatia. I didn't even know how to spell Croatia before this e mail. And as Heavenly Father looks down on me and says: "stop lying to my sons and daughters! It's not funny!" I come to repent. I'm sorry for lying. My accents will be saved for only the most appropriate times and I promise I will be 100% honest in life and especially your class. I hope you understand and are laughing about this as much as I am... or else the rest of this semester will be really awkward.
Your ordinary student from Boise Idaho with an ordinary American accent,
So that's the first half of the story. The second half is much, MUCH worse. I went back to class with no accent and, to my entertainment, no one said a word about it! Shows how little everyone cared. As the class progressed, I took notes and drove the vans and we went hiking and waded in rivers. It really was the best biology class. One time, we hiked up in the Teton Mountains and Brother Wall had us all sit down at this GORGEOUS over-look and pull out our notebooks. He said that we were going to talk about glaciers and then added: "Behind me used to be a glacier." It was some serious hands on learning.
But Brother Wall's tests were hard. He had warned us that his tests were essay questions, but I've gotten through those before. When I sat down to take the first test, however, I had no idea how to answer the questions. I kept most of the test blank. I got a 25%. The lowest grade I have ever received.
Well, about a week passes from the embarrassing test and I get an email from Brother Wall. I don't have the exact email anymore, but this is pretty much what it said:
I have received a call from the testing center and they have informed me that you were cheating on your exam last week. I am writing this email to inform you that you have been pulled from my class and an appointment has been set up for you to meet with a dean to discuss if you should continue here at BYU-Idaho or be expelled. Carrie, why would you cheat? If you needed help, I would have been happy to assist you but you have now used your choices to paint yourself into a corner.
Oh, and I'm just kidding. I'm getting you back for that little accent stunt you tried to pull in my class.
See you Thursday.
You can imagine my reaction as I read that. I was bawling. I was screaming in my head: "HOW CAN THEY SAY I CHEATED?! I GOT 25%! I DIDN'T EVEN ANSWER 75% OF THE QUESTIONS!"
And then I continued to read, blinked a couple of times and cracked up.
Of course, I also called my roommates in (all of whom were concerned by my tear streaked face) and had them read the email, and I read it to my mom who about had a heart attack. A great prank like that from a PROFESSOR needs to be shared.
The point is, that was pretty much the end of my lying days. Of course, I still tell a fib here and there but I don't do it just to see how people will react anymore and I really do try to keep it to a minimum Turns out, telling the truth can sometimes get a way better reaction than a lie anyway :)