Ann Farabee: Busted
It was a lovely May weekend with the bluest blue sky. Having almost completed my first year of teaching at the age of 22, I had splurged on a Myrtle Beach weekend with friends.
Ahh… the sand. The surf. The beach. The relaxation. What a great time we were having! No worries.
But… 48 hours later, it was almost over!
Wait a minute! Why didn’t we just extend it a day? We ARE already here! My attendance at work had been stellar!
The plan was devised: Get up early Monday morning. Call my principal. Tell him I was sick, and would need a substitute for my class. Hang out on the beach all day. Simple, right?
No, it was horrible.
After a sleepless night due to fear of getting caught for my planned deception, I knew I was trapped in my little web of lies. After writing my exact words to say on a scrap of paper, I headed to the phone booth a couple of blocks south of the motel.
(For my young readers, a phone booth is a very small room or enclosed structure with a public telephone in it. For the record, this phone booth was not a room and was not enclosed. Oh, how that would have helped.)
I dialed 0 for operator so I could complete my call. I nervously inserted the coins in order to pay the price. My very nice principal answered the call.
What I would have given at that moment to be at home, preparing to head to work.
In a very weak, sickly voice, I whispered that I would be unable to work that day because of my illness, and would need a substitute.
I awaited his response. Nothing. Then, as I waited… it began. Above my head, the sounds were thunderous. Military jets flying overhead. Many military jets. The noise lasted forever.
Neither of us said a word, or if we did, the words were not heard. We just waited.
I did not fess up, nor did he call me out on it, but I have a sneaking suspicion that once he got over the frustration of having to get a substitute at a moment’s notice, that he ended up smiling about it and probably could not wait to make eye contact with me the following morning, knowing that I would have the word GUILTY written prominently in my eyes.
I had chosen to NOT do what I was supposed to be doing.
Had I done the right thing, I would have been at work.
The weekend fun was over, once I made my mind up to be liar liar pants on fire.
Research indicates that the average person lies 1.56 times a day. But… the research stated that some of the people surveyed may have been lying.
When I got back to the motel room, the first thing I noticed was a Gideon Bible on a table, staring at me. I did not pick it up. Had I picked it up, most likely this verse would have jumped off the pages at me: Colossians 3:9 – Lie not to one another.
A lie is a false statement with deliberate intent to deceive.
One lie can be enough for someone to question all your truths.
It can destroy trust and tear down relationships.
Thankfully, I learned a lesson that day, and grew up a bit.
Did I mention it rained the entire day?