on communication – iv

So, the fact that the fourth installment of my tanka series “on communication” has fallen on a “Stream of Consciousness Saturday” (#SoCS) has helped me decide how long the series will be – 7/seven/vii – with this being the non-haiku centerpiece (although I may throw one in at the end. Don’t know yet – that’s one of the scary, yet exhilarating aspects of SoCS writing.

The word prompt for today is “Trick” and, of course, I want to tie it in with my series “on communication” (I’ll link you to the first three at the bottom – it’s up to you to follow the final three if you want).

Here we go.

I get tricked by communication more times than I like to admit. But I have found it is least likely to happen when I am face to face with someone. I have a pretty good “bullshit meter” that works best when I can put a face, voice, words, body language, and everything else all together to evaluate the message. I would expect it’s the same on the other end, but I can’t say for sure. I’m only responsible for myself.

I’ve been tricked a few times by cleverly constructed Phishing emails. Not the ones that have Hillary Clinton killing people (although maybe I should heed those more – I don’t know). I’m talking about the ones that say “Your credit card has been used for this online purchase” and looks SO LEGIT that I click the (fake) link to decline the charge and reset my account password. Ugh. Those probably make me feel the most stupid, because I AM NOT STUPID, and biting hard on those is just embarrassing. It also lets me know how much easy prey is out there for these internet predators, and it makes me sad and angry. Because it will just get worse as the crooks get better. Sowing their electronic discord for war far more than peace.

I’ve been tricked fewer times, but no less embarrassingly, by people posing as someone else on Social Media. Ya really think you know a guy from a few pictures and a half-dozen back-and-forth sentences, right? I’ll leave it there. You don’t. I don’t. My kids CERTAINLY don’t. Scary shit.

Good old fashioned written communication used to be pretty reliable, but it’s still difficult to read tone and fully appreciate the conditions under which the words were written, which often led to misunderstandings. Back when it took weeks or months to deliver written messages, clever adversaries would use the known delivery time to misdirect their foes and put together an offensive that would be advantaged by whatever the slow-moving non-truth would eventually convey.


That’s why, for centuries – millennia even – people risked their lives traversing the globe on storm-tossed ships and treacherous mountaintops to deliver important messages – of war or peace – in person.

Face to Face

You’re much less likely to be tricking anyone when you’re standing on their turf and they can see the twitch in your eye, the sweat on your brow, or anything else that would betray a falsehood.

I’m not lying now
why would I try to trick you?
look at my kind face
nary a hint of deceit
as I speak of war or peace

Good thing this series has three more installments…

on communication – i

on communication – ii

on communication – iii


Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Oct. 31/2020

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