Memory is fiction

“Memory is fiction”

was a memorable quote I got from Keith Richard’s autobiography (though the exact page number escapes me at the moment I did not make it up. See here)

I know I’m a bit late to write this as a Remembrance day / Veteran’s Day post but someone shared something with me thinking about the link between memory & peace and fact & fiction. It sounds rather clumsy but.. I really never thought about those connections. I just sort of took the F&F one for granted, as so many philosophers have done all the work charting and repaving that road; seems like there’s little room for a new theory there (though I did promise a Prof. Dewitt to write mine one time… I’m such a procrastinator.. still haven’t penned it).

A memory is what is left when something happens and does not completely unhappen. ~Edward de Bono

At first I misread this one (I like jumping to conclusions) instead of ‘unhappen’ I took in ‘happen’. Linking it to one theory I heard about.. you only remember the dreams that were incomplete. Something about things left undone.. hangs on everyone’s conscience. True or false?

Memory itself is an internal rumour.

~George Santayana, The Life of Reason 


I really find this one accurate. Rumors echo and are retold and passed around til.. you aren’t really sure what the facts are anymore.

A childhood is what anyone wants to remember of it.  It leaves behind no fossils, except perhaps in fiction. ~ Carol Shields

And here I am, at the topic I almost wrote on yesterday; lies and untruths. I don’t know that anyone bothers to read those so I’m pretty much talking to myself.. and if it’s just me.. I can be quite honest. Because there’s no prize in this game.

If you meet me I will tell you all sorts of things, nowadays most (I’ll throw out the figure of 90%.. that’s a bit high.. maybe 85%) are true, the others I honestly made a mistake (probably quoting numbers).

I’ve got to come out with it – being honest is really difficult.

Unless you’ve known me my entire life you probably don’t know that I used to be a compulsive liar (I’m unclear of the line between compulsive and habitual so I’m using C here). Really, up until the age of .. I’d say 12 I lied a few times a day – to keep up practice. Of course, you couldn’t blatantly lie nonstop – you need those little breaks of truth or 50-50 guess-like answer to keep people talking to you.

It may have started it to get out of trouble; blaming people and saying I didn’t do things I did .. rarely the reverse. If I get credit for something I want it to be for something I Actually did. I don’t know, actually it must have started before that.. I am the oldest and spent a large portion of my days alone inventing things, talking to animals on the farm.. never lied to them but always lied to people.. not sure why. But it was really, just this daily thing I did. I can’t remember how many stupid things I lied about but.. I think it was for a couple reasons:

1. the safety blanket of the people around you thinking they know you.. but actually don’t. (I would bet money my ex bfs will each give you a dif answer when asked my favourite colour hehehe)

2. And the slight little power of illusion you hold over your audience, heheh that keeps them guessing. ‘Odd, Yolanda told me she did this and read that, however, she doesn’t know the answer to this question.. which is on page one.. but she answered the other question correctly.


The really strange thing for me is that I still get that reaction today.. but more pronounced. People either think I’m really insane in the clinical way where others just think I’m eccentric. BUT I make every effort NOT to lie.. I really do, everyday. I’ve tried so hard.. it’s so frustrating I’m at the point where I’m questioning my honesty policy! Seriously, where are the benefits?

This all came to mind yesterday when a coworker asked me something about my car, now, first off I don’t really care to speak to this man to begin with so.. perhaps I just wanted a quick out. But I lied, without even thinking.. no nothing before my lips moved and said “No” to a question which, in a second I though ‘wait no, I mean yes. I did go through a drive thru last week.’ But it was too late, I’ve also found over my years of trying to be truthful that if you correct yourself constantly (as I seem to need to do) .. people also take that as dishonest.. though in fact, you were changing it to the correct/actual answer.

This kind of thing happens all the time.

Like, I haven’t taken a poll but.. is lying everyone else’s natural inclination too?? Argh, I feel that it’s really bad and for years (believe it or not) I’ve chosen to take challenges and my honestly always one.. oh man it’s reeeally really hard.

So, for the next month or so I’m going to weigh this one and… quite possibly you may be dealing with a different Yolanda come 2011. No, your account # and cheque books will not change, the keys and locks will remain the same, I won’t even change the colour of the paint … but I’m seriously questioning any good that truth can bring. Do post if you can argue this one – either way.

Another arguable truth:

Things that were hard to bear are sweet to remember. ~Seneca

Heeeehehehehehehe *evil laugh* and if you were really paying attention to chronology in this post you would have seen a crack – very good if you found it. I’m a very confusing person even when I tell the truth.. or am I telling the truth? Who knows sometimes.

About yolandalenin

I talk a lot. ______________________________________________________________________ I write even more.
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