Panic Lie

by Scott Saad - August 10, 2010

A few days ago I had something amusing happen to me on my bike commute into work. Every now and then when stopped at traffic lights I’ll have the pleasure of talking to people that go out of their way to roll down a window to chit- chat. The conversation usually goes something something like:

Car: Hey, nice bike!

Me: Thanks!

Car: So you like to ride bikes huh?

Me: Yes, it’s pretty enjoyable.

Car: Sweet!

Me: Yes.

As you can see, there is not a lot of thought here. My brain pretty much turns into mush as I mindlessly answer some questions within a ten second engagement of dialog. On this particular day there was something about the situation that took me off guard. I’m still trying to figure out why it went down the way it did. The result was that I proceeded to make an uncontrollable lie which I will never be able to take back.

The first thing that was noticeably different about this experience was that I was not stopped at a traffic light but rather was in motion, on a one way street. The driver, who was in a convertible of some sort, slowed down a bit to get my attention. It went a little something like this:

Car: Hey, nice bike!

Me: Thanks!

Car: You like to ride!?!

Me: Yes!

Car: You riding in the Ride the Rockies?

Me: Yes!

Car (passing me, waving happily): Awesome! See you there!

I have no idea why I said yes to that question. I’m not riding in this organized event. At some point in my life I may consider it but not anytime soon.

Did I know the person? No.

Did I want to impress the person? I don’t know why if I did.

Why did I lie? The only logical reason I can think of is that I panicked because the question took me completely off guard and therefore I said the first thing that was in my line of next answers to come, “Yes!”

I don’t consider myself a pathological lier or even a casual one at that. However, catch me off guard while peddling a two wheeler and who knows what can happen. It’s just another friendly reminder that I’m not in control.

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I'm a software geek living and working in Boulder, Colorado. Follow me on Twitter; you'll dig my tweets if you're into that sort of thing.