Discerning Lies

Saturn is squaring Venus in Gemini right now and this anecdote illustrates the energy brilliantly. The soldier has Venus in Gemini so I am the Saturn in Virgo figure of course.  He was telling me about this guy he knew who used to lie all the time.  The was guy was just a total liar, he loved to lie and in fact they would have lying contests.  “I’ll tell you some of his lies,” the soldier offered.

He went on to tell me some of the guy’s lies, which were outrageous.  “…And then the son of bitch said he was so poor he had to wrap rags around his feet… one pair of shoes a year,” he added as I listened carefully.  “I told him, you’re a lying son of a bitch! You didn’t tie rags on your feet. I have been around poor people…”

I hated to do it. He was having fun telling me the story of this teller of tall tales but fact is…

“I realize this guy was lying,” I said, “but just so you know, there is such a thing as one pair of shoes a year. We got one pair of shoes a year, that was all there was. Now really, this was the case and there was a way it was done. The shoes were bought to be sturdy. Saddle shoes?  They were chosen for their construction, not their looks. They were going to have to hold up all year. We got them at the start of the school year and we would wear them all year and actually they did hold up.”

“Saddle shoes?”

“Yeah. They were sturdy as hell and they did last. They had no holes but they got dirty and your feet grew so by the end of the year, your feet were jammed in them where they hurt.  So summer would come and by that time we’d really outgrown the shoes so we didn’t wear shoes.  Um… eventually at times we would have those rubber sandals, thongs. They cost 50 cents, or 3 for $1.00 if you got them on sale so eventually we got those at times. You know, until they broke.  We didn’t always have those either. I’m just telling you…”

“Well this guy was lying,” he said.

“I am sure he was.  But anyway, it’s not really that good to be in the desert without shoes. Your feet crack, it gets real bad and as a matter of fact there were time I did tie dish towels on my feet to go outside because it hurt so much?  And we had to hang up the clothes.. we had a clothesline and it was hot as hell to stand out there in one place in the burning dirt with your cracked feet. It was just painful so for that, we’d take a towel out there. Yep. I would lie a towel on the ground and stand on it so I could hang up clothes… scoot it down as I hung the clothes because it just burned the shit out your feet to do this – stand in one place as opposed to hop around.”

He knows I used to cartwheel to the mailbox and I thought about mentioning this was part of the reason why (it keeps your feet off the ground part of the time) but figured I’d not be believed. He didn’t say anything in the pause so I kept talking.

“So anyway, I just want you to know that not everyone who says they have one pair of shoes is not lying. I would hate to be telling you something and you think I am a liar.”

“P, if I ever thought you were lying to me, I’d call you on it in 2 seconds. I am not what you call a shy motherfucker about things like that.”

I laughed.

“Yeah, I know you’re not lyin’, but this guy was.”

People who lie make honest people look like liars.

Can you tell when someone is lying to you? Do you confront them?

20 thoughts on “Discerning Lies”

  1. Sometimes I can tell. Sometimes when people lie about small things (ie. “I took the bus to work”) I automatically believe them. I’d rather not find out I’d been lied to, because it just makes me feel so bad. But I have this unnerving ability to find out everything–even when I’d rather not!

    This post made me think of a realization I came to a few months back. If someone, for example, spent only 2 summers playing on a river, but said “When I was a kid I used play on the river”…well you (listener) may think that means “every summer” but…no one said that to tell a lie, it’s just how the information was heard.

  2. Oh you can hear it in their voice, the lies. And sometimes it’s not a total lie but an omission, leaving out info; there a different kinds of lies —

  3. Elsa, I love picturing you cartwheeling to the mailbox! And if you had no lawn, as I imagine, then that could not have been easy (or cool) on the hands, either!!

    If I know someone well, I can usually tell if they’re lying to me. Something in the voice, or the way they look… There’s a show on TV right now called “Lie To Me” which I watched a few times. The plots aren’t that great, but the tips on spotting liars are very interesting.

  4. In my opinion men lie more than women. It seems like it is part of their culture. I’d be interested in what the soldier has to say about why, seeing as they are raised by women to begin with. Gemini males seem to me to be the worst and they will continue to lie even when standing there with blood on their hands, so to speak. As an Aries I used to confront it, now I don’t waste my time. I just discount the source. But, it does bother my Pices moon–why lie to me about stuff I can easily check? Do you think I’m a fool?

  5. i can usually tell when i’m being lied to, or when someone is being straight with me — natal chart has saturn in virgo exactly square my gemini sun, so, guess you can say i have experience in the matter — and incidentally, my family was a firm believer in one pair of (school shoes anyway, had sneakers for play) that had to last the whole year, i remember those visits to the shoe store where sturdiness was in competition with stylishness. luckily during the 60s clunky shoes were ‘da bomb’ and everyone was happy. 😉

  6. I can be both gullible and discerning depending on context. Eventually I figure out the lies and I’m more skeptical now than I was when I was younger, much less gullible. A few years ago I kept up an email correspondence with a high school friend for about a year. He would tell some of the wildest, most exaggerated stories, obvious tall tales. I never confronted him, some I ignored, some I played along with to figure out what his point was in telling them. He has Jupiter in the 3rd house, tall tales, square Neptune in the 12th, fueled by fantasy and imagination. He’s a Pisces to boot. The tall tales were one thing. I think he was a form of entertainment to him. But when he lied to manipulate me, I’d question him, not call him a liar but bring up the inconsistency or whatever. He’d just tell another lie to cover, but he didn’t have a good enough memory for his own lies to make it work. I’m a Cancer. I remember. Looking back it was educational. Lying is a way of life for some people I guess. I’m less likely to take someone’s word for something now, and I’m more likely to be confrontational about it.

  7. Doreen I share some of your experience. I use to be incredibly gullible but I also have a good memory and so if/when things don’t add up, then that eventually sets me straight (except when I was a kid, my gullibility made for pretty crazy making situation & I never dared to question out loud).

    But with people I’ve just met or barely know it’s a different story. I’ve been had by authority figures because “they know best” and second guessing myself instead of respecting my own insight or gut feeling, trusting my intuition. I might say… I disagree, or I need a second take from someone else.
    I now will confront people if it’s worth it, also alike Maureen: to bring up inconsistencies. I have Libra rising and will avoid hostile or uncomfortable situations. However a truly unfair lie and its consequences will eventually cause my Aries Mars to stand for truth. And once that’s going… any remaining shyness or gullibility vanishes.

  8. “Can you tell when someone is lying to you?”
    Yes, always. A lie leaves footprints, honesty doesn’t. “Confront them?” I don’t bother unless it’s one of children.

    P.S. Love you comment about cartwheeling to the mailbox. We’d cartwheel down slight declines to pick up speed and become massively dizzy, eventually crashing to the ground, heads spinning like crazy.

  9. I started doing that because my family said I could not. Whenever they said I couldn’t do something I would get pissed off and perform.

    I really could cartwheel as transportation. I had the intention of cartwheeling to the store 1.5 miles and while I didn’t make it, I made it about half way… and then walked the rest of the way, spent my 12 cents, and started back home, cartwheeling.

    Really, I had nothing better to do.

    My sister twirled. She would twirl to the store and I would cartwheel.

    We were both sporty in our own way.

  10. No, Lupa, no witnesses. We were isolated and I ASPIRED to have witnesses. I really thought myself something and something unstoppable. I just had this notion and I still do, this is why it is so unproductive / fruitless to tell me I suck.

    I am just not going to believe you, see? I know what I have done, things that no one else would have or could have done and that is that – I have earned my self esteem which means it cannot be taken from me.

  11. I’m probably middlin’ at detecting liars as I just don’t care whether most people are lying to me. I’d never bother to confront them – it has nothing to do with me. They can lie to me all they want since I’m going to forget what they said in about a minute anyway.

    I only follow the lead of a very, very few people and they are either family or road-tested over time.

  12. I am gullible too but once I find out you’ve lied to me you become what I call a “known liar” and once tagged, you’re tagged and your word is meaningless.

  13. hey, me too! my friend is trying to decide whether or not to get back with a guy for the 5th time (groooooaaaaan) and all I do when she talks to me about is yell “BUT HE’S A LYING LIAR LIAR LIAR LIAR!”
    (she is an Aquarian who doesn’t believe in astrology but sadly this conjunction is hammering her. she can’t believe she can’t make a decision).

  14. My sister:

    “So true about the cartwheeling, the both of us, to get the mail. It’s funny how we figured out how to
    give our feet a break and cartwheel to save them now and again from getting burned…”

    told ya.

  15. I bet if you had had something softer, you also would have been doing somersaults and what we called the “worm”, rolling sideways down any hillside…. We sure had fun, but now just the thought of it makes my stomach feel queasy! (I was a top-notch cartwheeler, too!)

  16. We did that stuff and we did yoga with Henry on a towel laid in the dirt. Ha ha ha.

    But Henry slept on plywood with a 3 inch foam pad, feet elevated 15″ over his head.

    We also lie on a slant board all the time… feet elevated 18″ above our heads to “rest our hearts”> I did this so much, I still do it as many of you know.

    Er… I have a crooked (sloped) rectangle picnic table and I lie on it every summer day we have. All my phone conversations are had on that table unless they are clients. With clients I have to focus so now lying on wood, dreaming on the job!

    I am never happier (outside of sex) than I am lying on that table, I just grew up doing it, I don’t know what to say.

    Can’t wait to get out of here, back to the desert for board lying (closer) to year round.

    This is like growing up eating beans, or pasta or pancakes. These things become comfort food and for my lying on a slanted board in the sun is… just not something people are going to understand.

    I mean I am sure my neighbors wonder why I lie on that table all the time but sitting at it is just not the same. They are cooking home food on their grill. I am lying on my table, I don’t see a problem and I’m not kidding, I DO NOT see a problem.

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