Exaggeration Saturation

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Exaggeration Saturation

There is a fine line between fact and fiction. In today’s fast-paced society, when the average attention span lasts only 4.2 nanoseconds, a person who dares to recount an event knows that he or she must grab the audience’s attention in 4.1 nanoseconds or less. The technique that such a brave fast-paced storyteller has developed is a hybrid of fact and fiction known as FACTION. A faction is a group of fictitious comments that were once facts, but that have dissented from the rest of the facts and now refer to themselves as “enhanced facts.”

These enhanced facts were once empirically-based, quantifiable facts who simply realized that they were more attractive to their audience once they spiced up their story. People who discriminate against the enhanced facts refer to them as exaggerations. They do not understand the perspective of the enhanced facts.

A friend of mine is an excellent FACTION teller. He absorbs us with tales of walking 50 miles when he got lost; of being so hungry he ate ten whole pizzas; of waiting 2 hours for the bus one day when it was running behind. As engaging as these tales are, you might be wondering how to derive actual facts from a story filled with these enhanced facts.

My friends and I have developed a strategy called the Rule of 1/2. When our friend begins his FACTIONAL story, we simply arrive at the truth of the tale by mentally dividing every numerical value in his story by 2. In other words, he walked 25 miles, ate only five whole pizzas, and waited a mere hour for the bus. This method of using the Rule of 1/2 can be applied in your own lives if you are friends with a teller of FACTIONAL stories.

If you plan to employ the Rule of 1/2 when talking to a teller of FACTION, please note that there are exceptions to this rule. For example, my friend will sometimes use reverse exaggeration. “Troi,” he will exclaim, “I don’t know why you don’t want to drive to Montana with me, it’s only like two miles past Oregon!” In such cases, it is necessary to turn the Rule of 1/2 upside down so that it becomes the Rule of 2/1, otherwise known as the Rule of 2. That is, you will be multiplying these inversely enhanced facts by 2. By doing so, I thereby deduce that Montana is not two miles from Oregon, but at least four miles from Oregon.*

*A map would have misled me into believing that Montana is only two inches from Oregon. Thank goodness for the Rule of 2.

Remember that there is no shame in being direct in your attempts to clarify the type of conversation in which you are partaking. Ask your conversational partner: Is this a factual, fictional, or FACTIONAL discussion? Your partner, of course, will know the right answer, having read my highly informative blog that boasts nearly 1,000 readers per hour and which yesterday topped the New York Times top ten bestseller blogs list.*

*That was a FACTIONAL statement.

–Troi out

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