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Does Your Dog Bite?
Andy Bustanoby
(C) August 27, 2005

     One of the amusing scenes from Peter Seller's classic Pink Panther
     series of films is where he goes into a small hotel to get a room.
     Sellers, playing the part of the bumbling Inspector Clouseau, steps
     up to a desk where a room clerk is standing, and a dog is lying at
     his feet beside him.

     Clouseau, asking for a room in his heavy French accent, says, "Do
     you have a 'urhoom'?"  The clerk says, "A what?"  Clouseau says
     with  annoyed emphasis, "A urhoom!"

     The clerk says, "Do you mean, a room?"  Clouseau answers with great
     annoyance, "That's what I said, you idiot--a urhoom!"

     The clerk replied that he did, and while Clouseau waited for the
     clerk to register him, he noticed the dog lying on the floor beside
     him.   Clouseau asked the clerk, "Does your dog bite?"  The clerk
     said, "No, he doesn't."

     Clouseau bent over to pet the dog, which suddenly snapped at his
     hand and growled.  Clouseau, quickly stepped back and said
     indignantly, "I thought your dog didn't bite!"  The clerk, without
     looking up, said, "That's not my dog."

     Of course the hilarity of the scene was heightened by the fact that
     the clerk knew full well what Clouseau was asking but was ready to
     tell a "deceptive truth" to get even for being called an idiot.

     I wonder how many times we do this kind of thing.  We won't tell a
     lie, but the truth we tell may not be a lie but really is a
     deception.  We may do it to get even with someone, or we may do it
     to get ourselves out of a difficult situation.  But in either case,
     it's a deception.

     Perhaps we would be less glib about this practice if we would
     remember that we learned it from the father of lies, the Devil
     himself (John 8:44).  Remember the story of the Fall?  The Devil
     told Eve that if she ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and
     evil, she would not die, but she would be like God, knowing good and
     evil (Gen. 3:4-5).

     This was a masterful deception.  It was true that she wouldn't
     physically drop dead the moment she ate.  And when she ate she would
     also know good and evil.  But this was, no doubt, the worst
     deception the human race ever experienced.

     The next time you consider deception rather than an outright lie,
     give it some thought.  And, by the way, if I ever ask you if your
     dog bites, let's make sure we both know what dog I'm talking about.

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