When I was growing up, my mom always told me that if I lied about something I would get in more trouble than if I told the truth in the first place. Because she would find out if I lied. At the time, I thought this was complete bullshit. Ya right, Mom, you're going to ground me, regardless. As I've gotten older, I've come to realize that she was right (just don't tell her I said that!). Do something wrong and admit your mistake and the other person involved will appreciate your honesty (although will still be disappointed). Lie, and they find out, well now, that's grounds for dismissal. Or so I assume. I really haven't found myself in that situation before. Why? Because the guilt brings me down and I always fess up before anyone has any opportunity to 'find anything out'.
However, every so often, I decide that my guilt complex has held me back far too much in life and I throw caution to the wind and do dishonest things. So far, Karma, Murphy's Law and/or the Spite Gods have struck me down everytime I decide this is a good idea... thrusting me back into my "honest to a fault" default. Bastards.
A few weeks ago, I was celebrating my birthday. I went to a pub and got nice and liquored up and then decided to go to a club to dance... well, the club was one skytrain stop away. I get to the station and go towards the ticket machine with the intention of paying (because not paying would be dishonest!)... and my friend says "We don't really have to pay, do we? I mean, it's one stop!"... and I started to say "Oh, yes, yes, we do." But then I said "You know what, it's my birthday and I don't have to pay on my birthday, let's go!!!".
We start riding the escalator up to the platform, I felt pretty confident... and then the guilt started getting to me. Halfway up the escalator, I turned to my friend and whispered "...There's a cop... at the top...". Her response: "No there isn't. You're paranoid". So as the escalator reached the top, I see a lady standing there, in a uniform that can only be described as cop-like. She looked me in the eye and said "Ticket, please".
I didn't know what to do. I couldn't tell her the truth and say I didn't have one... so I start searching, in vain, through my empty pockets, even going so far as to open my coat and look inside...
...as if I'm one of those "street vendors" that carries watches inside the coat, but instead of watches it's valid train passes. There weren't any. My friend looks her straight in the eye and says "I'm drunk. I didn't think to buy one" so the nice lady says "Okay well, go and buy one". So we did. No harm, no foul. Things don't always work out like that.
I go to school. I go to school in the evenings basically next door to my work. I park at work, because it's free. But the other day, I was really running late so I decide to park at school. I mean, I was running so late, I had to eat my dinner in the car. Not too bad, everyone eats while driving right? Ya, sure. But my dinner was a pork chop. I'm serious.
Anyway, a friend of mine goes to school with me and she tells me that for the past 9 weeks she's been parking at school and she doesn't buy a ticket because she figures that the stall has been paid for for the day. And she hasn't gotten a ticket so far, so she figures her logic is sound. So when I decided to park at school, that was my thought process.
However, when I parked, I realized that would be dishonest, so I should just pay for a ticket. But I had like 50 cents in cash and parking is $4. I could put it on my VISA, but that seems like an ordeal and I'm running late, so I'll just throw caution to the wind and go to class. Afterwards, I come out and see a little something on my windshield. Dammit.
I owe $57.70 for parking illegally; $47.10 if I pay within 7 days. All that because I was running short on time (heaven forbid I'm almost late for class!) and didn't have cash. I did go there with the intent to park illegally, but then the guilt brought me down and I was going to pay, but all those other circumstances forced me to be dishonest. Bam!! Spite-God-Powers initiated.
Moral of the story, it's a bit easier (and cheaper) just to fricken pay. Why? Because there won't always be a nice skytrain cop at the top that's willing to accept "I'm drunk" as a reason for dishonesty.
Big thanks to "EliseArt" for providing illustrations