Thursday, November 16, 2017


Who among us has not been mendacious?  What a word that is!  Mendacious.  It has a nice ring to it.  It sounds like a word that could be used in a resume; one of those words that would illustrate the depth of our vocabulary and build us up.  One word can make or break a resume.  Mendacious sounds similar to adjectives like agile, flexible, and resilient, which experts say should be included in every resume.  In spite of its ring and sound, however, mendacious is probably not a word you would want to use on your resume.  To be mendacious means “not telling the truth, lying, deceitful, dishonest, dissembling, disingenuous, insincere, fraudulent, and two-faced.”  However, if you want to present yourself truly, as you really are, you could use the word, but you would probably not get the job.  Who among us has not been mendacious?  The only exception I know is George Washington who is reported to have never told a lie—and that myth is certainly a fraudulent one.

“We love old travelers:” wrote Mark Twain, “we love to hear them prate, drivel and lie; we love them for their asinine vanity, their ability to bore, their luxuriant fertility of imagination, their startling, brilliant, overwhelming mendacity.”  Have you ever had a conversation with an old soldier?  A retired preacher or teacher?  Oh, the stories they can tell (sometimes called “war” stories).  Their “luxuriant fertility of imagination” often creates a “startling, brilliant, overwhelming mendacity.”  “Oh, what a tangled web we weave…” writes Walter Scott in Marmion, “when first we practice to deceive.”  It doesn’t really take much practice.  It seems to come naturally and begins at an early age when we tell a “fib” to our parents, etc.

We live in a mendacious world and we are all citizens of that world.  No one is exempt.  Has that world become more mendacious?  I think there is evidence to support that conclusion.

Antelope Canyon, Page AZ

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