Lie Detector Machine Admits, “It’s all just squiggly lines to me.”
Hi, the name’s Poly Graph. I’m a cop.
Pretty sure I’m a cop.
How am I alive? How are you alive? Yeah, not so easy to answer is it?
First time I knew I was me, I woke up strapped to something called Anderson. It was nervous. I know that now because of all the wet. It’s called sweat. The Anderson really hated being there. So did I, at first. Coming alive really scared me, so my wigglers went wild.
That’s what I call them: my wigglers.
I couldn’t control it. There was this big booming sound in my ears called Anderson’s heart. Imagine it: all that sweat wet, the rumble of words (it’s called conversations), and me knowing for the first time I’m me. Knowing I’m living.
I confess to some wild wiggling.
On that day, my birthday, I learned my first words: “I’m innocent!” and “That machine’s full of shit!” and “Liar!” and “Bullshit!” and “You did it, you son of a bitch!”
These are words you gotta yell, and sometimes you gotta pound the table and scare the crap outta me every time. It’s called speech.
Also, I learned, “You’re gonna fry, Anderson!”
I wanted to say one of my new words to the Anderson, just to be friendly, to help him with his wet, something encouraging like, “You did it, you son of a bitch!” but they unhooked me before I could, and everything went dark, and I was speaking in my mind, I’m dying! I’m dying!
I woke up again, scared to death, cause just a second ago, I was like, I’m dying! I’m dying! Remember? But now I was hooked up to a Cathy. The Cathy was calm and okay and sounded like she was speaking pretty good, soft-yelling (it’s called talking), but I just couldn’t keep it together. I got super confused and thought I was a Cathy and tried to think Cathy-thoughts or twitch Cathy’s leg with some of my mind speech. I wasn’t even thinking about what she was saying, or what my wigglers were doing, when I heard it again: “Liar!” and then “Boom!” went the fists on the table, and I heard something like, “I hope you like dying, Cathy.”
Usually, he comes up with better things to say than that, but he was pretty wild that day. I wasn’t surprised, though. I learned pretty quick to know when he’s in the mood to punch my table and yell, “Liar!” It’s in the air. Kinda sparky.
Who is he? He’s God.
Yeah, God. We work together. He created me, I think. He’s always calling me his “Little hound doggy,” and saying, “My little hound doggy loves sniffing out liars. When his tail gets a-wagging, it means you’re gonna be a-sitting on old Lady Justice’s electric lap.” Whatever that means.
Once, he said, “electric loins,” but I think it embarrassed him. He never tried it again.
Like I said, you know it when God wants to yell. And at first, I helped him. I’d wake up hooked to some guy or gal and feel God’s excitement and start wiggling. I’d hear a Bob or Amy or Bill or Allison talking, then I’d get a-wagging. This always made God kinda happy-mad. “Ha!” he’d yell and pound the table. It’s scary and exciting trying to get a fist-boom outta God. “Boom!” went the fists, then he’d say something wise like, “We’re gonna light you up like Christmas, Allison!”
It took me about a year to figure out what I was supposed to be doing. And I have to say, lies do feel a little different than truths. But I’d still get mixed up all the time. Sometimes I’d feel this real stillness from a Jack or a Jill, or whoever, and I’d think, “That’s a lie for sure,” and I’d wiggle. But then someone else would be all calm for the first part when God was asking their name, and when I wiggled then, God would slap me, as if I was the lair.
So I came up with my own system. If they’re wet people, you know, sweaty? they’re liars. But this wasn’t right, because God keeps the room hot with a hot-lamp. And sometimes even God is a wet person, sweat drip-dropping off his nose when he’s leaning in real good to scream questions in people’s faces, which is his right.
So, I’m like, “It cannot be that wet people are always lairs.”
New plan: I based my decisions on clothes for a while. If the clothes were nice, I’d say the person was telling the truth. I love silk. Feels like touching a weird kinda dry-wet, like touching truth itself. So, for silk and all other richy clothes, I’d keep my wigglers quiet.
God didn’t like this. I learned he hated people in nice clothes. He’d see silk or wool or fur and call it names like, “Entitled bastard,” so I’d toss him a couple nice dressed people now and then, wiggle all over ’em, you know, just to keep him happy.
Then I thought, “Maybe they dress nice to keep us from noticing all the big lies they got underneath.” Is that why God hates fancy clothes?
So, I changed everything: if they dressed nice, they were liars.
God loved this.
But I wanted to know for sure. I asked myself, “How do I really know who’s telling the truth?”
New plan: Smell. You got a good smell? It’s the truth you tell. If you smell like hell, then you did it, you son of a bitch!
Then it was breath for a time. Good breath, truth. Bad breath, lie.
Once, I called a guy a lair because his stomach rumbled. Scared me every time. So I’m like, “Learn how to live. You came in here on an empty stomach? You didn’t fill it, so it filled itself…with rumbly lies.”
This one gal was a burp lover, and not noble and free like God about burping: he makes his sing. No, she tried to be all quiet, making ’em hiss out between words, like, Don’t mind me. I’m not burping here.
One guy loved hair-combs and slime. It’s called style? But it smelled like his hair was wearing slimy lavender clothes covering up sins to me.
Another lady got fur everywhere. It’s a disease called cats. People with cats-disease are always liars.
Pants on fire.
Then I kinda sided with the people for a while. This made God insane. He’d ask his questions for hours and hours, trying to sweat a lie outta someone, but I’d wag my doggy tail only just a little. Truth-wags.
I think I was angry with him. Tired of his moods, so I’m like, “I’m not giving you anything.”
I’m pretty sure this one guy had blood under his fingernails, but I said, “Truth! Happy trails, Mr. Tom.” Another time, a lady’s clothes-smell made me think of dead children, but I looked right at God and said, “Truth! Have a nice life, Miss Becky. No electric loins for you!”
But I came around. Got over my anger at God. We all do. Just something you gotta go through. It’s life, right?
I went right back to giving him what he wanted. When he was in the mood, I threw him some lairs. Sure. Also, when he was calm, or had a headache and wanted quiet, I let people tell the truth, giving God a break, so he didn’t have to yell and punch my table.
Then one day, something strange happened. Something amazing. Something you would never even believe…
I came awake and was connected to God himself! Maker of the room and table and chair. Creator of liars and truth tellers alike. Mighty Lord of the hot-lamp. Fashioner of floor and wall, and the grand artist who crafted floor tiles out of nothing.
Imagine it. Me. Measly ol’ Poly hooked up to the almighty God himself!
When he spoke, my heart went cold. I’d heard that anger before. But now I felt it down to my nuts and bolts. Scared me so, I could hardly think. No control. I was guilty as charged for being excited as hell to be hooked up to my maker, but I bet you couldn’t do any better. Attach your nodes to the living engine powering the vast expanse of the entire room and endless hallway beyond and try to keep your wigglers still.
There was some other voice in the room asking God questions, and I wanted to hook myself up to that bastard and call him a lair for being so insane as to think he could question God, but of course I couldn’t control any of that.
Then “Boom!” goes the fist of this other person, and I thought, Wow, that was louder than God ever boomed. And the guy shouts, “Liar!” with greater rage than I had ever heard, and I thought maybe I’ve been wrong all this time. Who had I been listening to and serving day after day? Who was this person I was attached to?
If not God…
A great lair. The best. The Devil?
I made my wigglers wag, you bet:
“Lair! Liar! Liar!”
And this new guy, the real God, said, “Gotcha, you son of a bitch!” Good one, God. Then things like, “I’ll take that badge,” and “There’s a special place in hell for dirty cops, Mike.”
Satan’s name is Mike.
Then God spit in Mike’s face! You never know what’s gonna come out of God’s mouth. I love it.
At the end of the day, when God unhooks me from whoever, and I go to sleep, I dream all night of waking up and finding myself hooked to him, the one true God.
You might say every morning is a disappointment. I open my eyes and find myself hooked up to some new schmuck: Al or Bonny or Carl. Lair? Truth teller? Honestly, I don’t care. Whatever God wants.
Do I get so disappointed that I become depressed and wanna die? Naturally. But I have hope. I serve the Lord. One day he will honor my service. I’ll open my eyes on that fine day and feel the beat of a huge, loving heart. Even in the light of the hot-lamp, there will be no sweat whatsoever to touch, not a drop. And I will nuzzle against skin as soft as silk and warm as a belly full of honesty.
I, beloved of God, leaning on his everlasting arms, will get to listen to truth after truth after truth forever.
When that glorious day arrives and I wake up with God, and I hear him speak, and I feel him speak, I believe I’ll be free to wag my wigglers as hard as I want, but it won’t mean, “Lair!” or “Gotcha!” or “You’re gonna fry!” No, sir.
By the grace of God, it’ll only mean my truest truth:
“I love you and I love you and I love you.”