Friday, November 20, 2009

honestly speaking

Honesty is the best policy. I believe this in a moral sense, but I've also discovered it to be true in practice -- even when I think I have a good reason for some slight dishonesty, it seems like something happens to nudge me back onto the straight and narrow.

For example, on one occasion, I decide to ride the Metro without a valid ticket, rationalizing that this is better than being stranded in East St. Louis at night without a phone, money, credit cards, or pepper spray. And that happens to be the one time in a thousand when they actually come through the train to check for tickets.

Frequently (although much less frequently nowadays), I decide that it will be less effort to let people continue in some misconception (i.e., that my name is Christy, that I'm the person they meant to call and not a wrong number, that I don't mind eating peppers, etc.) rather than correcting them. I inevitably turn out to be wrong.

On a trip to Denver, I see that the only open window seat is in the exit row, so I change my reservation to that seat. When the flight attendant asks if I can handle opening a 40-pound exit door and assisting other passengers, I say "yes." I mean, I probably could. Maybe. But it's not like it matters anyway. How likely is it that something bad will actually happen on a short flight to Denver?

Ten minutes later, when the alarm starts blaring, smoke starts pouring out of the back of the cabin, and the flight attendant runs down the aisle, I begin seriously reconsidering that decision.

I've heard of people getting caught in their lies before, but I'm the only one I know of who almost got caught in a lie about being capable of opening an exit door. And that's why, for me, honesty is the best policy. Someone seems to be sending me a message, and I think I'd better listen.


Fiorenza said...

Wow. Yeah, it certainly does sound like you have troubles when you do something even a little dishonest. Reminds me of when of when I decided I'd go ahead and use Natalie's bus pass just once on the Tracks, and they checked. I did go ahead and admit that it wasn't mine, and everything turned out okay, but yeah. I understand.

nancythefifth said...

What the heck? You know, I always let people believe my name is something else and things like that. I probably would have done the same thing. I guess people shouldn't sit next to me on planes. What happened to yours anyway?

Adam said...

um... i love this.

Cindy said...

Thanks, Adam.

Yep, it's the truth I simply cannot get away with lying. Except that I accidentally told an untruth in this blog entry when I said we were flying to Denver. It was actually Oklahoma City. Oops.

About the plane, it was fine. We just went back to Salt Lake and landed without incident. Of course, then they didn't want to fly that plane without checking it out thoroughly, and there weren't any more flights, so they told us to go home and call in at like 4 in the morning to see if we could get ticketed on a flight the next day. For those who had a layover in Salt Lake, they just had to sleep in the airport, since the airline had used up all of their hotel vouchers for the day. In the end, we got to Oklahoma City about 18 hours after we were supposed to. It was all rather ridiculous. But, I was so relieved that I didn't have to open the exit door that I wasn't as annoyed by it as I would have otherwise been.