Sunday, July 22, 2007

Anonymous Text

It is hard to believe that a man is telling the truth, when you know that you would lie if you were in his place. - Henry Louis Mencken
I received this quote yesterday afternoon through SMS.

If I had received this text two years ago, I would have called the unknown number to satisfy my curiosity as to the identity of the sender. Nowadays, knowing more about myself and my own limits of fame, I tend to ignore these.

But the man behind the quote - the name was too uncommon to be a fabrication. The soundness of the argument, and the quote being more akin to a real one than a custom-made SMS cheesy quote, piqued my interest further. I did a little research this morning, using trusty old Wikipedia. H. L. Mencken's article was there, all right.
Henry Louis Mencken (September 12, 1880 – January 29, 1956), better known as H. L. Mencken, was a twentieth-century journalist, satirist, social critic, cynic, and freethinker, known as the "Sage of Baltimore." He is often regarded as one of the most influential American writers of the early 20th century.
The opening paragraph alone sold me. Me being sent a quote from such a literary giant could not have been mere coincidence.

Of course, the past two weeks have seen me being secretive to new friends and acquaintances about my past career; and I also kept my career change to most of my old friends. But I did not lie; I just withheld the truth as it was not convenient to declare the whole truth at the time.

If I were to be judged on the mere basis of this action, I would fail as a trustworthy, loyal friend. But the secrecy has its purpose, and moreso towards my own personal development.

I have always been chastised for being an open book, predictable and transparent. In fact, merely posting these thoughts would give the discerning reader a look into the machinations of my mind. A little secrecy as a personal effort is a commitment.

So, to my anonymous texter, who never gave me the honor of knowing who he was, I will say this: when you gain my loyalty, you will gain my trust, and the pure truth coming out as my words.

And to give me a quote from known satirist Mencken? I bet if he knew me and what I have done so far in terms of satire and commentary, he would take me in as an understudy.

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