Another dinner party reveals 10 more lying guests!
Just when I think I’ve identified the best liars in town, Lisa Nelson and I host another dinner party. As loyal readers know, we bring people around a “guess-who-is-coming-to-dinner” table at an area restaurant to bond over a game called Two Truths and a Lie. (And then I gossip with you in this blog about what the guests had to say for themselves.)
(I want to start this week with a little truth of my own, which is that last week, I accidentally switched “truths” from Ann Lee and another guest, and it was the other woman who actually did run a nude mile and graffiti the Eiffel Tower. Ann, who works at Summit Credit Union, understandably didn’t want to take credit for sowing someone else’s wild oats; you’ll see I fixed it as soon as we realized the goof-up, and mea culpa still!)
At our latest party, held at Benvenuto’s in Fitchburg, Jennifer Collins, from the Madison Public Library Foundation, said her daughter, 9, is best friends with a child whose father is a Nobel Prize winner. Many of us believed the lie, which is understandable – and it could actually become true because stem cell researcher James A. Thomson will likely earn one before his career ends. Jennifer’s truth was that she did sell her 12’x45’ house for half a million bucks.
The Payroll Company’s Carrie Falk did go to nine countries on one trip when she spent a college semester, which lasted four months, “at sea.” Her lie was that she has not traveled around the world – she has. She also fooled us by saying she has four children, which we chose as her lie. That’s true.
Maitri Mayer, MassMutual Financial Group, was working in West Africa in the Peace Corps when a guerilla soldier, a gunner in an armed tank, drew down on her. There was a minute when she was sure she would die, but then he slowly turned the gun away and proceeded down the street, where he did shoot people. Her lie was too funny to share, and involved a trip to Japan, where she entered the wrong district and was being sold by a gentleman as a … no, you had to be there to hear that one! But another truth was stranger than even that fiction – she was traveling in Poland to see concentration camps and, when she said she’d seen enough and just wanted to relax on a nearby beach, her friends dropped her off. While they were gone, a Russian carrying an AK47 rifle let her know that she had inadvertently crossed the wrong border ….
Iconica’s Kathy Pientka really did take a train ride from the U.S. to Quebec, continuing our world travel theme, and there followed a funny discussion of “The Tartletts and Humor Committee.” Her lie was that she stitched up a rat that was attacked by a dog. Some of us actually fell for that one.
Delora Newton, now with the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce, once got motion sickness during a flight and threw up on (then-Governor) Tommy Thompson. Her lie? Though she worked at the Capitol for 10 years, she did not work for all three branches – only two. See why she fooled us? Truth is often stranger than fiction.
Kelly Slack Wolf did, in fact, recently start a new business featuring vino and Van Gogh, where women get together to do an art project while drinking wine. “We basically paint and drink,” she confessed, and many at the table offered to join her at the next meeting. She also is a clogger in parades. She does not, however, have a dog and bunny that cuddle together. The bunny stays as far away from the dog as possible.
Some of you might already know that Welton Construction leader Kurtis Welton once challenged his 17-year-old son to climb Mount Kilimanjaro – and beat him to the summit! That earned a round of admiring whistles when he confirmed the truth of it, because we didn’t believe that story over his lie that he had rubbed shoulders with Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher in a skybox at Lambeau Field.
Susan Salvo, a personal life coach with Confident Directions, is related to the Witches of Eastwick. She said she’d travelled in 48 states (the lie) – in reality, she’s only been in 47. Come on – witches? She swears that’s true.
Did you know Brad Gilbert (Gilbert Cost Control Consultants Corp.) was once a model? He blushed telling the story and probably will again when you remind him of it. Another unexpected truth (though we all agreed that Brad’s still model-esque): he once owned a zedonk. Yep, a cross between a zebra and a donkey. He really fooled us because his lie was that he had grown up owning six horses and was a good rider (he, in fact, doesn’t ride).
Meanwhile, wife Ginny Gilbert, CEO of Gilbert Cost Control Consultants Corp., was telling some tall tales of her own. She convinced us that her father, a history buff, had named her for Virginia Dare, the first white person born in America in 1578. In fact, he suggested the name (secretly) knowing it was the name of a woman he’d once had a crush on! Her truth was that the total she has gained/lost over the last 16 months was 95 pounds (goes up a few, goes down a few, etc.). And she did get to pick the story used for the book Entrepreneurial Soup for the Soul.
What About Lisa’s Lie?
If you think we invite interesting folks to dinner, you’re right. But that means that Lisa, as co-host, has to live up to the jive, too. She actually had people believing that 18 months ago, while on a trip for Walmart to Africa (she is the director of public relations for Walmart), she was with a group of engineers when a man introducing himself as the Prince of Zulu invited her to the Feast of First Fruits – wherein a bull is killed. Imagine that we believed that while doubting she had a degree in women’s studies from the UW (true!).
What was my lie? I’m not telling. I hope to use it again in August when we reconvene. If you want to know, you’ll have to sign up for a seat at our table. It’s easy – agree to pay for your own meal, drinks, and tip and we’ll add you to our list. You can make a reservation now by emailing me. We do have a waiting list, including Mayor Soglin (you never know who you’ll meet, after all), so get your name on our list to be mailed options for dates/places! And that’s a truth.
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