FAKE!

Andre Agassi used to live at our house.  His time was spent entirely in my daughter’s bedroom. Now, don’t be surprised or alarmed. He was a near life-size cardboard cut-out, dressed in tennis gear, who smiled at everyone who entered the bedroom. He was a cast-off from a shop and would have been dumped had we not rescued him. But he was fake. My daughter and I had seen him for real at Wimbledon. Seeing him thwack a tennis ball was an awesome sight and I tried to emulate him by sending my own forehand drives into the corner of the local tennis court – without anywhere near his level of success.

I was reminded of Agassi’s cardboard cut-out when attempting a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle. One bit of it was fake. A note inside the box indicated that a piece of the jigsaw was missing and a suitably coloured-in cardboard cut-out had been made to replace it. I felt cheated. Once the jigsaw was made up, the fake piece stuck out like a streak of grey hair on an otherwise brunette head. The eye was drawn to it.

These examples raise questions: Do others see me as I really am? Am I pretending to be something I’m not? Is my life one big sham? You ask a question of a friend: “How are you?” “Fine, thanks.” And he asks you the same question. “Fine,” you reply. Really? No, your job is insecure, your overdraft is getting bigger, you and your partner are not communicating and your brother’s got cancer. At times we can all behave like fake cardboard cut-outs. Let’s forget fake and be real.

 

 

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