Regular FeaturesEnquete
Lie; Inevitable and EssentialA survey on 100 Yonseians' "lying" habits.
Cho Eul-ah Cub Reporter  |  lovelyeac@yonsei.ac.kr
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승인 2006.04.01  00:00:00
트위터 페이스북 구글 카카오스토리

ON APRIL 1, there are so many high school students unusually wearing their school uniforms on Yonsei campus. Are they students who visit Yonsei to have a university tour? Actually, there weren't any high schoolers! They were Yonseians enjoying April Fool's Day. On April Fool's Day, many people enjoy making fun of others, regardless of age. This April Fool's Day of 2006 is coming up, so we at The Yonsei Annals took a survey with 100 Yonseians about "lying", one of the most essential elements in a good April Fool's Day prank.

  Before we begin the survey in earnest, we first asked, How often do you deceive? First-ranked response from 27 people was "once or twice per month." Next ranked was "once or twice per week (23)." Wow, either Yonseians are honest beyond our expectations or they are deceiving us. However, please don't believe all Yonseians totally, because as many as 11 respondents said, "I can't count the number of times I lie."

  Next, we asked about Yonseians' childhood. When asked What was your most frequently told lie? 32 people answered, "I'm late because I have so much schoolwork to do!" Okay, you mean that you actually didn't do anything regarding studying or schoolwork, but while you were playing with your friends, time had gone by too quickly, right? If you told the truth to your parents, you would have been punished, so you made up a little story like that! The next common answer was "No, of course I didn't nod off! (16)" Indeed, there are so much studying to be done for Korean students that children often couldn't help but nod off to sleep while studying. To avoid scolding from their mothers, many students denied their exhaustion. How pitiful our students are!

  If you used to lie to avoid scolding from your parents and teachers, why are you lying these days? When the Annals asked, When do you lie usually? 28 Yonseians said, "when I want to hide my mistakes." We have always been taught throughout whole our lives, "be honest when you make a mistake, then you will certainly be forgiven." Nevertheless, we are always worried about the bad things that may result, so unconsciously, we lie. But haven't you noticed that when you don't tell the truth about your mistakes, you always found yourself in more terrible situations than when you tell the truth, despite your shame and fear? The solution to this problem is absolutely up to you! Furthermore, psychologists advise us that, these days people do tell social lies such as "let's have lunch sometime" and "let's have a shot" without sincerity. In short, people usually use lies for their own convenience, right?

   

If you are found out as a liar, how would you handle the situation?
60% Tell the truth frankly
16% Stay calm

What is the lie that you most want to hear?
25% You became pretty and gorgeous 
21%  You're hired!

  As time goes by, many things in society change, but there are some eternal lies hiding in the mouths of all. So the Annals asked, What is the best "all-time" lie? The two best all-time lies were ranked equally among respondents. One was "I will eat like this until today, and then tomorrow I will go on a diet (22),"  the other all-time lie more for politicians was "I don't know anything about that (22)."

  Especially for women, the first answer wins sympathy, during times when, they are on a diet and there are too many delicious and tempting food available. As soon as you leave the front gate of Yonsei, the street is lined with snack stalls and on Myung-mool Street there is nothing except for restaurants and Hofs, so it is too hard to overcome the desire for food. For them Shinchon is never of any help! As for the second lie, it is obvious that we find most politicians always saying, "I don't know." When I was young, it seemed that almost all politicians on television said only, "I don't know." At first, I thought that politicians were bound by some law to say that. Now, about fifteen years later, politicians are still saying it. Then, where are those politicians who could say, "I know it?"

  Sometimes we are taken in over and over by a perfect lie, such as those spoken by politicians, but we also occasionally notice the words are lies. The Annals asked, How can you sense that others are lying? The top-ranked answer (48) was, "when a person stammers and uses too much meaningless jargon."  The second-ranked answer (30) is, "when a person has trouble keeping constant eye-contact with me." So, if someone wants to tell a perfect lie, you had better wear sunglasses to hide your true nature! Plus, the psychologist Bella DePaulo, said that liars usually don't use the first person-words, affective, cognitive or exclusive words.

   
▲ Illustrated by Kim Yeon-Ji


   

How can you sense that others are lying?
48% When one uses too much meaningless jargon
30% When one has trouble keeping constant eye-contact

What is the best all-time lie?
22% I don't know anything about that
22% I will eat like this today, and will go on a diet tomorrow

  Since lying is also a kind of crime, it is natural that you are embarrassed when you commit that "crime." Accordingly, you have tried not to let others notice the difference between your words and your actions. However, if you are found out as a liar despite your efforts to make a perfect lie, how do you handle the situation? When asked, more than half of the respondents (60) replied that they "tell the truth frankly." You guys are very wise people. As the famous and long-time beloved saying states, "honesty is the best policy."

  And finally, the Annals wants to know about the lie that you most want to hear. The first-ranked answer was: "you became pretty or gorgeous (25)." Yonseians are happy when they hear praise about their appearance. The next answer was "you're hired! (21)" Oh, I can grasp the mood of our Korean society. We are going through hard economical times. Almost every day, the press tells us that it is getting harder to find a job even for highly educated people. Yonseians are no exceptions. I hope that all Yonseians can get jobs as soon as possible so that the words "you're hired" do not remain a lie. The third ranked answer (19) was: "If you take this, you won't gain weight-no matter how much you eat!" The last answer was "you are exempted from military service (12)." For men, the military is the worst thing that everyone wants to avoid as possible.

  We have mentioned mainly lies told to others. However, there is also a lie that you tell to yourself. For example, the senses of inferiority make us think "I have no advantage over others." Please be frank with yourself! Even a white lie could be a lethal poison that hurts your personal development. In addition, as we observed above, sometimes we are tempted to tell lies for virtuous reasons but I recommend you not to tell lies that may deeply hurt others. On this April Fool's day, what about to tell a lie which make others feel happy such as "for me, you are my best friend!"

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