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This is a question Bullshit and Bullshitters

We've had questions about lies and liars in the past, but this time we're asking about the sort of fantasist who constantly claims they've got a helicopter in the garden or was "second onto the balcony at the Iranian Embassy siege". Tell us about the cobblers you've been told, or the complete lies you've come out with.

Thanks to dozer for the suggestion

(, Thu 13 Jan 2011, 12:55)
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like all cabbies... a story of epic bullshit and massive redemption
Bernie was a consummate bullshit artist. I was on a work trip to Boston and having my first go at corporate entertaining.In due course, bladdered and loving everywhere, everything and everybody, I stumbled into a cab and proceeded to tell the cabbie how great Boston was, how great the people were, how, in particular, I was going to come back one day and run the marathon there...

So of course, Bernie had not only run the Boston marathon, but he'd won it. And he's won the London marathon, and come third in Athens, and was designing special gel-filled shoes for Nike.

Well, of course, we got on like a house on fire; Bernie was from the same street as a mate of mine in Bristol (stunning coincidence) and we couldn't let such serendipity go un-celebrated. In Boston, you couldn't get a drink anywhere after 2am, so we went to a little chinese restaurant somewhere and drank 'cold tea', basically whisky in a teapot with prawn cracker chasers.

So, the evening winds on, with Bernie too pissed to drive and me behind the wheel, hilariously lost around the 'big dig' roadworks, even picking up a fare and taking him to MIT for his first night of college: I still have the $10 bill he gave me as a tip.

So, I took Bernie's number and slithered into my hotel and all was forgotten; a great beery tale of a bullshitting cabbie.

Until, something like 18 months later, I happened to do the London marathon for save the Rhino (in the suit) with a friend. As a bit of an added challenge, we decided to fly out to Boston that night to do the Boston marathon the following day: thinking that nothing could possibly go wrong, I called Bernie and arranged for him to pick us up at the airport.

Following a very relaxing flight (business class upgrade, god bless you BA) my friend and I rocked up on a cold, rainy night in Boston, pretty achey-painy and stiff, and hada rather terse exchange if views on the sanity of my plan. Still, fuck me sideways with a rhino horn, but there was Bernie. Another epic night of drinking ensued, followed by a trip out into the suburbs to his home where he insisted we stay the night.

On the walls: framed front pages of 'Runners' World' with Bernie's grinning mug, Cups, medals, you name it. And on the sofa I slept on that night? About two dozen golf shoes with custom gel inserts at various stages of development.

The following day got, if anything, even more bizarre, but we raised over £20k for STR and didn't spend a penny of it on accommodation or food or drink. Bernie, you fucking legend, I've dined out on that story for nearly a decade now. I hope, wherever you are, you got back on your feet and finally made good.

*I have googled Bernie many times since, trying to track him down, with no luck. I know he was a world class runner, albeit that maybe some of his race-placings suffered a little inflation in the telling. Still, cast not the first stone, and all that.
(, Sat 15 Jan 2011, 21:09, 2 replies)
Redemption indeed.
I bet you were somewhat stunned at the Runner's Worlds and gel shoes...
(, Sat 15 Jan 2011, 21:55, closed)
well, now you put it like that
it sounds a bit weird out of context. But yes, it was a fucking awesome revelation. The same guy and I ran the Marathon des Sables a couple of years later, and when we finished, I realised I was wearing my Boston Marathon T shirt, which I'd written Bernie's number on in permanent pen.

We called him from Morocco but the line was dead, and that was the last I ever heard of him.

Other details from that night are even better, but unrelated to QOTW, and we can't have deviation from the subject, after all...
(, Sat 15 Jan 2011, 23:04, closed)

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