No, Really?


“Honestly, those people annoy the crap out of me,” Zac said as he went on a tirade about something or other. I can’t tell you what, because I was still lost in thought before it dawned on me that he was even talking. It’s not my fault, really. He never gave my brain time to shift gears before he just started spewing his story. I need time to refocus. He knows this, but has no patience to wait for it. His stories usually just come bubbling out of his mouth, unfiltered.


However, at the word “honestly,” my attention was grabbed. It’s one of my pet peeve words. I hate it because it’s unnecessary. I mean, unless you’re a constant liar, why would you even use it? It doesn’t increase the level of truth in your statement or make it anymore believable.


So, I said, “You’re lying.”


“No, I’m not. I said, ‘honestly.’ That tells you I was speaking the truth.”


“Okay, so unless you say, ‘Honestly,’ with every story, I can then assume you’re making it up and disregard what you’re saying to me.”


“Why would you do that? I don’t lie to you.”


“Then why use the word honestly? It implies everything else is an untruth.”


It’s hard to believe people who have to pepper their stories with words such as honestly or truthfully. Yet, that’s okay, because most of the time, they don’t believe you, which can be evidenced by my second pet peeve word, “really.”


“We went to the mall yesterday and ate at the food court.”


“Really?”


“No, not really. We drove around town knocking over little old ladies. Of course, really. Why would I lie about eating at the food court? It’s not as if it’s a five star restaurant.”


“I believe you. Relax.”


“Then why did you ask, ‘Really?’ It makes it sound like you don’t believe me.”


Has truth become such an oddity that we question everything now? Must we stress that we are telling the truth before expecting people to take us at our word? I try to believe everyone, unless, of course, they’re a government official, and then even if every other word is “honestly,” I’m still going to wonder, “Really?”


I don’t assume people are going to lie to me and even if the story is a little bizarre, I prefer to give the storyteller the benefit of the doubt. If I catch myself saying, “Really?” to someone on a regular basis, then it’s time to sever ties. Obviously I no longer trust this person. I refuse to associate with people I cannot believe and I don’t care how long we’ve known each other.


I don’t care for these words because they assume the worst in people. They’ve become a bad habit of speech; one that I try to break my family of when I hear it. I believe them and they can believe me.


Honestly, I’m not sure about everyone else.


Really.



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