Photo by Mallory

Photo by Mallory


Today is another day on our life's journey.

Perhaps here you can find encouragement

for wherever your journeys may take you.

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read insightful posts.

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Monday, April 18, 2016

What We Pretend to Be


We are what we pretend to be, so we must be
careful about what we pretend to be.”
–Kurt Vonnegut, American author (1922-2007)

The above quotation implies that we pretend to be what we’re not. Surely none of us do that! Or do we?

Mothers are notorious for giving special attention to their children’s appearance before sending them off to school on picture day. A child leaving home on school picture day bears little resemblance to that same child of yesterday or tomorrow.


All gussied up—fresh haircut, clothes a little too dressy for a regular school day—with strict instructions to stay clean and smile pretty. Many school pictures reflect an almost-artificial child.

And what about our long-distance friendships we renew each year at Christmastime with a yearly family portrait? Everyone’s smiling, looking carefree and happy. The pictures sometimes border on illusion.

Do we walk around daily in disguise, like school pictures or family portraits? Are we like the fickle chameleon lizard, camouflaging ourselves whenever it suits our needs?

Do we ever merely say what we know the listener wants to hear? Or, maybe say what puts us in the best light? Surveys found that the majority of people admit they lie to those around them 30 percent of the time every day.


If relationships aren’t based on the simple virtue of honesty, what basis is left to build from? Various difficulties can result when people try to relate to one another when one of them is not completely honest.


By approaching school pictures and family portraits the way we sometimes do, I hope we’re not teaching our young people hypocrisy. Let’s don’t add to the problem; they’ll learn double standards soon enough if they read the newspapers and watch the TV news.


On early television, Flip Wilson coined the phrase, “What you see is what you get?” Coca-Cola ads declare their soft drink is “The Real Thing.”


We might better apply the familiar legal oath to our lives: the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Then we could say, “What you see is what you get. And really mean it.


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Thanks for reading my blog! Book 3 in my West Virginia Mountains Series is titled Promise Me. It has just released and is available in print and eBook at Amazon!