The value of a white lie


We’re continually bombarded with ‘helpful’ statistics and expert information on how we should live our lives.

Invariably, sometime later another bunch of experts announce that the previous advice should be taken with a pinch of salt . . . unless you’re on a low sodium diet.

For example – the five ‘pieces’ of fruit and veg we’ve been encouraged to eat every day were recently declared inadequate and increased to ten.

That’s a lot. Who sponsored this new research?

The Grand Order Of Fruit’N’Veg Stallholders?

The line, “There are lies, damn lies and statistics”, was coined by Benjamin Disraeli, which is ironic, coming from a politician!

We’re told ‘lies and damn lies’ all the time, but we don’t get annoyed or incandescent with rage (I’ve always wanted to slip that expression into an article!) because we don’t realise we’re being lied to.

For example . . .Last Friday, while staring at my PC, desperately trying to think of a subject for this week’s column, I telephoned a restaurant to book a table for Saturday night. Obviously, as well as a table, when I got there I’d also expect to find chairs, crockery, glasses and food and drink.

Comedians are SO demanding . . .

When the restaurateur finished taking my booking she said, “I hope you have a lovely evening.”

Later, I realised she wasn’t referring to the evening I intended spending in her restaurant. She was referring to that very evening.

I’d never met the lady, so why would she care two hoots whether my evening was lovely or lousy?

The truth is, she didn’t care. It was a meaningless pleasantry she thought her customers would like to hear. In other words . . . a white lie.

Accidentally, she’d handed me the subject for this article that I needed.

So I did end up having a lovely evening!