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TRUTH

"Rare commodity"

"I'm telling the truth. Honest."

"Watch your language, son. Words like that can come back an' bite ya'."

"What are you talking about? All I said was...."

"We knows what you said. But maybe you ought'a un said it."

"Why? What the matter with saying that I'm telling the truth? It's the truth."

"When you go talkin' the way you do, you makes like an oath, kinda'. An' if we'uns learn that what you say's ain't the God's honest truth, then your word won't be worth a plug nickel no more."

"That's right. Leastwise with us it won't."

"Want's to change your tune, young fella'?"

"Be wise a ya' to do it. Leastwise tone 'em down a smidgen."

"Strong words is hard to swallow back. Best to keep your words soft an' sweet so's they don't gag ya' none."

"I don't know what you guys are talking about. Doesn't any of you say that you're honest, or that you tell the truth?"

"Sure we do. Lots a times."

"Tha's right. An' it's mostly when we's set to tell a whopper. Ain't that so, Tom?"

"Why'd you go and ask me like that? You know I don't lie none."

"See? Right there's a fine example for you already. Tom say's he don't lie. Now that's a whopper."

"If it ain't the truth, it's a lie. An if it's got but a particle a lie in it, it ain't the truth. Do you foll'y me son?"

"I understand that you all think I'm lying, when I'm not. What makes you think I'm lying?"

"No one says you is lyin', son. We jus' don't necessar'y think what you is tellin' is the truth."

"What's the difference? A lie is a lie, and the truth is the truth."

"'Not so. Not always, nohow. I'll draw ya' a fer instance."

"You watch him close, son, 'cause he's a good drawer."

"I ain't goin' to draw that kind a pitchure, Abner. It's a word pitchure I's planning on drawin'."

"Oh. Well, you is good with them pitchers too."

"I thank ya', Abner. Here's the fer instance. Say I was to tell ya' that my wor'man was ta' home cookin' up supper this very minute...."

"His woman's a fine cooker too. If'n he's gettin' set to give you an invite, you best take it...."

"It's just a pitchure I'm drawing. Not no invite."

"Oh. Well go ahead on."

"So, ok, I says she's home. And I know this 'cause ever' night about this time tha's 'xactly what she does."

"She does too, his woman. Ever' night this time."

"Ok. So I says to you, come on with me an' have victuals with the wife and me. She's done got it on the stove cookin' up fer us now."

"See? I done tol' ya' he was fixin' ta' give you an invite. You best take it, son. You won't be sorry'er fer it."

"This ain't no invite, I tol' ya. It's jus' a pit'cher."

"Oh. It's jus' a pitcher, son, like he done told ya'. Don't take it as no invite."

"Oh kay. So you an' me we gets to my place, an' my wor'man ain't there, an' there's nothin' on the table but our ol' cat...."

"That cat a' his is al'as on the table. Ain't he."

"Will you kindly shut up an' let me finish my pitchure?"

"Didn't mean no harm by it. I was jus' sayin'..."

"Ok, so they's no victuals, and they's no wor'man like I say'd they was. So, young fella', was I a' lying?"

"No. Of course not. You honestly believed that she would be there fixing supper. You didn't lie."

"Well then. Was it the truth what I tol' you?"

"Um, well a, I don't suppose you could exactly say it was the truth, exactly."

"Is 'at so? What then, 'xac'ly, would you say it was?"

*

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