Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Heart of Gold, and 2 true stories about liars

Two good DVD rentals this week. First of all, Neil Young: Heart of Gold. Aside from the obvious feature here of getting to watch Neil Young perform a whole album of new material in a great venue, kudos to the director for not using the MTV editing style that has been bugging me all these years: jerky, rapid camera movement, not letting you see anything longer than a second. This was delightful and I never once felt the concert video frustration of wishing I could move the camera myself. Thank you Jonathan Demme.

The other one was “Shattered Glass”, a true story about a liar, which redeemed Hayden Christensen as an actor (an aside -- I win the little debate with Mr. Blueberry. It’s not the actors in the latest Star wars Trilogy that are to blame, it’s just that George Lucas can no longer get a good performance out of a human no matter how good an actor they are).

I used to have a friend who was that kind of liar – so anxious to be popular that he would fabricate all kinds of stuff about himself, a regular Jon Lovitz “yeah, that’s the ticket” kind of guy. Whatever you liked or admired, seems like that was what he tried to become. Technically I don’t know if it’s classified as a pathological liar (I’ve read that they actually believe their own stories) or some other kind. I will call him PG for "phony guy".

Anyway, this was back in high school, it was about 1970-ish and went on for several years. PG said that his Grandparents were Native American. He was an amateur artist and had painted their portraits as Native Americans. There was a whole story to go with it, very plausible. OK, cool. He liked to dress in Indian-style garb, feathers, headbands, beads. Not unusual at all for the times. Seemed like a nice enough guy and started hanging around with our little crowd, usually at our house. When I say “our” I mean my mother and I. She was 34 years older but was really much more of a friend than a mother. We had the same friends, liked a lot of the same music, went to the same places, even rock festivals, both got high… [OK, my upbringing was anything but typical, and this was a remnant of our sixties lifestyles][and I'm fine... really.]

Some of our friends were gay. After we’d known PG awhile, he told us that he was gay. He even started moving his body differently, adopting new, more effeminant mannerisms to seem more convincing. (oooookaaaay…. fine… maybe he was and maybe he wasn't, it didn't matter to us one way or the other) One of our friends was not only a drag queen but also a self-proclaimed Satanist. He said it was his mother’s religion and he was raised that way -- an interesting person and very dear to us. (He also worked at the funeral home, and got us to take in his co-worker who needed a place to stay. None of us knew this co-worker guy was an escaped murderer, but that's another post for another day maybe) Also, my cousin who also hung around with us was a big Alice Cooper fan, so, it wasn’t long before our friend PG is now not only a gay Native American Indian, but he starts wearing these hooded black capes, black nail polish and geez, I can see where this is going!! Add Goth to the recipe and impress a couple more.

I probably could have even believed all of the above (people do go through plenty of changes), but a lot of people were starting to get seriously pissed off about various things he'd told them that didn’t gel, make sense, couldn’t be true. I don't remember all the stuff, it was a mess. The Matriarch (my mother, the only adult) and some friends decided to have a mock trial for him (which would these days be called an “intervention”). Basically, when he showed up after being asked over, everybody just put him on the hot seat about stuff and we all tried to clear the air. Basically we got to yell and he got to apologize, confess, grovel, and whatever. Did it help? I don’t know. There can’t really be friendship when all someone has lied about so many things, who knows what to believe… even if PG is really sorry about it. Trust is about the hardest thing in the world to get back after it's gone.


MichaelBains said...

Trust is about the hardest thing in the world to get back after it's gone.

RAmen, blueberry.

But it still sucks that it's so.

pissed off patricia said...

I know someone sort of like PG. She's a grown woman but tells any lie that pops into her head. Some of the things she says are truly jaw dropping because it is so obvious that she's telling a lie.

Trust her? Did once, big mistake. Trust her again? Not in a million years.

Blueberry said...

Now I'm reminded of another corker of a liar I knew more recently. She may be worthy of some coverage here too someday. Mixing just enough fact and fiction to where you don't know the difference, and with malicious purposes. Like trying to trust and befriend the CIA. ;-)