From the April 1979 magazine.

Lies

MY NAME is John, and I'm an alcoholic. I'm also a fisherman. I assume it's merely coincidental that I've been deeply involved in these two pursuits, both of which require one to continually fine-tune the ability to tell convincing lies.

A fisherman is expected to lie. He might as well, for the tales he spins (even those with some degree of truth) are routinely accepted with suspicion, if not complete disbelief, by his audiences. And isn't this also true of most alcoholics? The only difference is that the fisherman loses nothing of value when he lies, while an alcoholic loses that much more of himself and of those close to him with each lie he tells. A fisherman's family and friends accept his exaggerations as perfectly normal and harmless; an alcoholic's associates recognize his fabrications as ploys designed to insure the continuous flow of the liquid he so desperately needs.

-- J. W.

San Antonio, Texas

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