SAY IT WITH AUTHORITY

I tell stories. Well of course I do. I am a writer. But that is not what I mean. You could ask me anything. Say… a question about quantum physics, a topic I know nothing about, and I will look you in the eye and give you an answer, right off the top of my head, that will have you convinced I am an expert in the subject. When I first met my husband, he was quite impressed until he caught on. Now he thinks it is funny as all get out. But the really funny part is the person on the receiving end of my nonsense who believes it and, here’s the best part, repeats it. That is the victory. When your story has legs. That is when you know you are a good story teller. The only trick is to respond immediately and with an air of authority. For example, back in Ireland I was driving a visiting American around. We were travelling down a road that had a tall stone wall to our right and we had just passed a small road on our left when we came upon a very, very large half circle indentation in the wall. The visitor pointed to it and asked what that was all about. Now I could have said that there was a massive oak there a couple of hundred years ago and they built the wall around it. But what would be the fun in that? No one had ever asked me that question before. So there was no thought put into my answer. But immediately I responded, “Ah well now, that’s what we call ‘The Sherlock Turnaround’. See Sherlock’s Garage is down that little road we passed on the left. You get people racing down the road and they miss that turn off and this is a tough road to turn around. So old man Sherlock went to the farmer that owns that land and bought a chunk and pushed the wall back so people could make a u-turn. Some kids probably stole the sign.” The visitor muttered something like convenient or clever and I didn’t give it another thought. Until that night when I heard about ‘The Sherlock Turnaround’ in the pub! Victory!!!! Now I never lie. I am a very honest person. But as someone once said, an Irishman never let the truth stand in the way of a good story. I just tell stories when something comes over me. It’s probably some form of serious mental illness but I have fun with it.

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