I told myself this morning, as I tell myself every April First, that this time I would be alert, awake, savvy and street smart. No one was going to dupe, bamboozle, wool-pull or hoodwink me.
Guess that was a little ambitious.
Silly me. Stupid me. Incredibly credulous me! I could kick myself! I have already fallen for one April Fools Day joke (a fake web post about the British Royal Wedding being called off) and still have a few more hours to endure in the annual festival of teasing and tricking, pranking and punking those who are sucker enough to succumb.
As Dubya was fond of saying (or garbling), “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” What do you say when you’ve been snowed hundreds of times? How shameful is that?
If there were a hall of fame for chumps, I would deserve a place of honor in it. I have been a fall gal for as long as I can remember. There is no whopper, no deceit I won’t believe, no trick nor trap into which I will not tumble.
They say the definition of madness is doing the same thing twice and expecting to get different results. Well, to quote pop icon Cee Lo, “Maybe I’m craaaaaazy.”
Worse than falling for falsehoods, I have been known to circulate them. A friend of mine who loved pulling my leg, once had me convinced that the strong and beautiful musical form known as reggae was the result of Jamaican musicians attempting to mimic rock n roll with poor radio reception. Here I was thinking what a fascinating piece of ethnomusicology, and spreading this around, when I suddenly realized I had been jived and juked.
I am a sucker for all sorts of lies…not just good natured deceptions. My trusting nature has been crushed more than once by simply believing what I was told: romantic lies, personal lies, workplace lies. I fell for every one. Don’t believe me? Ask the friends who are still reminding me to look for red flags on dating websites, where folks routinely fib about everything.
Perhaps the most painful deception involved a movie actor who swore to my truly foolish 16 year old heart that he was going to marry me. My diary nearly detonated from the outpouring of my flaming emotions and then imploded with despair when I read in a gossip column that my “fiance” had fallen in love with someone else.
The curious thing about my credulity is that I am, in many ways, rather intelligent, perceptive, and sensitive to vibes and auras. It is quite remarkable how frequently my brain’s delicate satellite dish fails to pick up the signs of deceit.
I have concluded that gullibility is not a question of intelligence. It is more about trust and faith. Believing what you see and hear is more about wishin’ and hopin’ than it is about analyzin’ and concludin’.
I believe that being trusting is not only a character trait but also a choice.
A great choice in fact.
Given the number of times I have been made a fool, disappointed, hurt and shamed by falling for fabrications, I certainly would be wise to decide to disbelieve others. Truth is, I want to trust.
Yes, being naive and credulous can lead to betrayal. On the other hand, believing is essential for staying open to the beauty of love and life. You have to trust in order to sustain affection and connection. You have to have faith if you want to be in touch with the Universe.
Would I trade my April foolishness for being cynical and jaded? Not for a minute. I am grateful to be capable still of being bewitched, bamboozled and befuddled…today and always.