I n a classic episode of “Seinfeld,” Jerry is accused by his new girlfriend, a police officer, of being a fan of the tacky 1990s soap opera Melrose Place. When Jerry lies and denies it, she suggests putting him on a polygraph to find the truth. In an effort to beat the machine, Jerry seeks the advice of his masterfully mendacious friend, George Constanza, who tells him that his talents can’t be taught — “It’s like saying to Pavarotti, ‘Teach me to sing like you.’” Still, he leaves Jerry with a vital nugget of advice: “. . . Just remember, it’s not a lie if you believe it.”
I think of this bit whenever Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden starts in with one of his folksy tales about growing up in hardscrabble Pennsylvania and listening to his dad’s extraordinarily forward-thinking adages. We’re probably only a few speeches away from Biden recalling how his dad used to sit on the edge of this bed and tell him, “Champ, always remember, transgendered folk are just like the rest of us.”
He’s ever a man with a yarn.