false memory

for years now this neighbor's statements have been failing on so many checks:

- fact check
- chronology check
- completeness check
- logic check
- consistency check
- relevance check
- analogy check
- legality check

[if she or her husband unilaterally (they disable replies) pops in my inbox again, i'll blog concrete examples down the line.]

last week, she added another one:
- re-enactment check

she tried to add to her previous explanation (from three weeks back) on why she did not come out to talk to my dad.  she said it was because i called her like a dog and it was insulting.

she demonstrates how i supposedly called her:
-  right arm outstretched
-  palm up
-  three fingers and thumb circled together
-  index finger moving in a semi-circle as if stroking something
(not sure i'm painting the picture correctly but it's just like the seductive way of calling a lover except this one is supposed to be insulting.)

i go, 'huh?!  i don't do that!

i do this
[i stretch out my arm with my index finger pointing]

or this
[i stretch out my arm with all digits straight, hand flapping]...'

defensive mode:
i think i acquired the habit of pointing through decades of taking pictures.  i'd take a group shot and check that everyone's face is visible by going through each head from afar with my index finger.

anyway, i was telling her i pointed to her when i was telling my dad she was there.

she insisted i did the, what i'll call here, insulting-come-here.  she repeats the gesture several times.  she said it's actually the real reason she did not come out.

i go, 'real reason?!  how come you mention it just now???  if that's the real reason then you should have told me the very first time i confronted you [on january 9 about not coming out to talk to my dad in december].'

she said it didn't occur to her that time.  she said it came to mind only when she was already thinking about why she did not come out to talk to my dad.

hmmm...  i'd say that makes it being the *real* reason questionable.
(she actually reverted to some other reason after all this.)

anyway, i tried doing what she was doing.


me:  'it feels awkward and uncomfortable!  i don't do this!'

she says she very well saw me doing it ("kitang-kita ko").  she adds her friend saw it, too, and stopped her from going out because i called her like a dog.

i go, 'maybe she mistook the pointing for upward.  'i am responsible for what i said.  i am not responsible for what you understand.''

she was saying i said, "halika, halika" ('come, come').
her maid initially seconded her statement.

i tell them i don't really use "halika."

the maid modifies her statement and goes what i said was, "labas ka. labas ka."  ('come out.  come out.')

ahahaha...  get your act together!

i tell them i pointed to the neighbor when i was telling my dad she was there then afterward was just repeatedly saying "sandali lang" ('it won't take long') when i was trying to convince her to talk to my dad but she was refusing to come out.  i said i posted what transpired in my [january 29, 2018] blog.  i told the neighbor to check.  and i reminded her, she knows how i try to be as accurate as possible.  as in, she experienced it again just recently.

after some hemming and hawing, she eventually agreed that i just pointed her out to my dad, palm down, not up, no curly fingers.  she even said, without me asking, she'll tell her friend and her cousin and the rest.  (ahahaha...  she has spread the called-her-like-a-dog story to her pals!)


then the maid says she saw me do the insulting-come-here, too.  she demonstrates it just the way the neighbor was doing it earlier.

the neighbor goes, 'there!  there are already three of us who saw you!'
she says she doesn't really want to say it but it's in the bible, if more than one sees, it's true ("pag hindi lang isa ang nakakita, totoo 'yon").


well, if before trying the gesture i already knew i didn't do it, after having tried it, i was doubly certain i did not.  i asked for a re-enactment.

we went to the gate.  (their gate consists of vertical bars 3 1/2 inches apart.  you can see through it.  it's 49 inches tall and 2 1/2 inches above the ground.  i'm 5'1 1/2".)  ta-daaannn!!!  if it was awkward and uncomfortable without the gate.  all the more that it was with the gate!

the neighbor tried it herself.  she moved backward. she moved forward. back again.  forward again.  she was trying to get a position where she could do the insulting-come-here.

backward was too far.

she settled for the gate midway under her forearm.

i tried it.

ahahaha.  it was unnatural!  you would have to do a bit of arm acrobatics to get to that position!

what more, if you really did see it, you wouldn't have to try different distances anymore.  you already would have an idea where to position your arm in relation to the gate.

we go back inside.  this time the neighbor says she didn't see me do it.  her friend just told her.  (ahahaha...  version 2.0...  what happened to "kitang-kita"?)

i wait for the maid to finish what she was doing and then we, too, went to the gate for a re-enactment.

right after going out, i stopped and stood next to the gate.  in fairness, the maid said i was actually more to the left instead of the center.  hahaha.  i said the gate is the same height all throughout.  anyway, for accuracy, i moved.

i tried it with the maid.

it really was awkward and uncomfortable for me.

the maid, too, could not find a suitable position.  she tried different ways until she ended up modifying her description of what i supposedly did.  arm not straight anymore.
- upper arm now close to the body
- forearm perpendicular, forming a slanted letter L with the upper arm
- three fingers and thumb circled together
- index finger moving in a semi-circle as if stroking something

she settles for that and says, "ganito..." ('like this...')

nyahaha...  who calls someone like that?!  and if anything, that doesn't look insulting, it looks timid.  and, uhm, stupid.

so, what is it now?

first there were three of them who supposedly saw me doing the insulting-come-here.  the neighbor demonstrated what she saw.  she also demonstrated what she said her friend saw.  the maid likewise demonstrated what she saw.

then there were just two who saw.  the neighbor didn't see it anymore, just her friend and the maid.

then now the maid modifies the arm position that she saw.

ahahaha...  drop it.  it doesn't pass the re-enactment test!

it didn't end there though.  the maid suddenly remembers i had a camera.

hmmm...  i couldn't remember then whether i had a camera or not.  my camera and i, we're a pair.  it's like a natural extension of my hand.  maybe that's why whether it was present or not did not float in my mind.  (i checked for pics later.  i did have).

now why did the maid see my cam?  she was the one who came out to talk to my dad.  it was the three of us who checked the gutter together.

well, if i had my camera then, all the more that i can't do the insulting-come-here.  i'm right-handed.  i carry the weight of my camera with my right hand.  (i don't use a neck strap.  as in, it's not even attached to my cam.)  i can point with my cam in my hand.  but to do the palm up, curly finger insulting-come-here with the cam would be pushing it.

re-enactment test, with or without camera:  Failed.

now this demonstrates the pitfalls of substitution.  i was saying "sandali lang."  the neighbor substituted it with "halika, halika."  the maid, with "labas ka.  labas ka."  paired with "halika, halika." and "labas ka. labas ka," the insulting-come-here would make sense.  but with "sandali lang," it would be off.

these people fed on and reinforced each other's inaccuracies coming up with a false story that would not have been a logical progression had they built from the truth by retaining the original wording.

the neighbor has multiple experiences of me trying to get her to quote as closely as possible.  (she has a tendency to alter the meaning of statements with her supposed quotes.)  she's been finding it frustrating and exasperating.  with this latest occurrence, she better now understand why.

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