Pants on fire

Pants on fire

Strauss Home / Humor Channel / Bullz-Eye Home

So I saw the other day that Al Martin of the Mariners got caught in a little white lie recently when he fibbed about what a great football player he was at USC.

Actually, it turns out his story was true. 

Except for the playing football part. 

And the USC part. 

And the him being there part.

Personally, I find this story to be morally reprehensible. Why someone would feel the need to do something like this is beyond me.

I mean, he didn't just exaggerate the truth. He didn't just tell a story about "the big one that got away." He flat out lied about his past. 

By doing so, he not only lost all of his credibility, he turned himself into a laughingstock of the sports world. Worst of all, he trivialized the great football tradition at the University of Southern California.

I should know. Because I was one of the men that set the standard for the great football tradition at the University of Southern California.

You see, prior to my arrival, SC was known primarily as a running back school. Mike Garrett…O.J. Simpson…Charles White…Marcus Allen. When I came along and dominated like no QB before or since, I think I can humbly say that I changed the face of USC and Pac-10 football forever.

If I were the bragging sort, I'd say that I changed college football forever. 

But I don't really want to get into details about any of that. Because that's not what I'm about.

Even though it's true.

No, I've always been the type to let my accomplishments speak for themselves.

I'm not going to sit here and tell you about my five consecutive 450-yard passing games. My 98-yard TD run at the Rose Bowl that's now referred to simply as, "The Strauss Waltz." My game-saving goal-line tackle against Notre Dame after our middle linebacker broke his leg, and as he was carried off the field, he looked at our Head Coach and said, "Coach, send in that Strauss kid. I realize that he hasn't played defense since his sophomore year in high school, but if anyone can make an incredible play to save this game from the depths of despair, it's him. And after he's done saving the game, tell my cheerleader girlfriend to marry him. Because she deserves someone like him!"

Yep, that's what he said. I know that's what he said because I have a natural gift for reading lips. In fact, I'm so good, I was once hired by the FBI to interpret closed circuit video tapes of Central American drug lords.

Yes, yes, yes. I'm sure you're wondering. I'm also multi-lingual. Fourteen languages, actually. And I can do Pig Latin. In Latin.

But I don't really want to get into details about any of that. Because that's not what I'm about.

Truth is, when I was the star quarterback at Southern Cal, I just remember feeling such pride and honor to be the football leader of one of the great universities in this country. 

I remember feeling the history and tradition of the school as I led my team into battle each and every week on the hallowed grounds of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

I remember feeling slightly embarrassed as the P.A. announcer would say "Touchdown, Strauss!" again and again and again.

I remember thinking, "Y'know, I do believe I'm the greatest Trojan ever."

I remember walking the campus and hearing shouts of "Superstar!" as I would head off to class. I would always wave and smile because I never wanted anyone to think fame had gone to my head. Because it never did.

You see, I knew I was superior before all the fame, so I really had no reason to change my attitude.

For Al Martin to shamelessly fabricate his accomplishments at my school, while someone like me used his God-given ability to bless the world with his talents, is an insult to all that defines greatness in the world.

Namely, me.

Al Martin should be embarrassed with himself. What purpose did lying about something that supposedly happen years ago accomplish anyway? Didn't he think someone would check after he tried to go into such vivid detail about his past? 

A past that never happened.

Is his ego so fragile that he felt the need to impress people…because he really had nothing to impress people with?

It's called integrity, Mr. Martin. And if by some miracle you actually did have something to impress people with, there's something else you should learn. 


Nobody likes a know-it-all. A braggart. A person who believes that they're the central focus of the universe.

Take me, for instance. I mean, I really don't care that everyone thinks Hugh Hefner is considered the founder of Playboy. Even though it was my idea.

But I don't really want to get into details about it. That's not what I'm about.

I don't want to sit here and tell you about how I was approached by this aspiring publisher to help him start a new magazine. A young Mr. Hefner came to me because even though I had no experience in publishing, he knew that instinctively, I'd be good at it.

He was right.

So I asked him what his new magazine was about.

The shy, introverted Mr. Hefner said he wanted to target women with his new magazine and focus on their interest in hobbies and crafts. In particular, knitting.

He wanted to call his new magazine Macramazing Monthly.

Well, I felt sorry for the guy. First off, I thought the idea was terrible. Secondly, I found it really odd that he walked around in a silk robe all day.

So I gave the poor sap an idea.

"Listen fella, if there's one thing men like better than women in short skirts," I said, "it's women in no skirts."

Then I handed him a few thousand dollars -- because that's what humble, philanthropic men like me do -- and I sent him on his way.

The rest is history. 

Hugh's gone on to fame and fortune. Although he hasn't lost the robe.

And I've gone on to the incredibly successful life I lead. 

But I don't really want to get into details about it. Because that's not what I'm about.

I'm not going to boast about how I single-handedly landed a jet while simultaneously performing a successful emergency appendectomy on the pilot using my bare hands and a cheese grater, all while leading the passengers in a bawdy rendition of "Rock The Boat" by the Hughes Corporation.


I'm not going to brag about the time I climbed Mt. Kilamanjaro with a broken leg in a blinding snow storm with nothing more than a half-eaten box of Tic Tacs and a can of Bumblebee chunk white tuna. In water.


I'm not going to wax poetic about my best-selling book, "101 Things To Do With A Hard-Boiled Egg." And the follow-up bestseller, "101 Things To Do With A Hard-Boiled Eggshell."


I'm not to going to sit back and tell you about the day I saved President Gerald Ford's life when I momentarily blinded "Squeaky" Fromme's sightline by heating up her gun with the reflection off of my magnifying glass that I always carried in case I ever was in a situation where I could possibly save someone's life.


I'm not going to pound my chest as I tell you how I was the first man to win the Olympic marathon by running backwards. On my hands.

No, no, no, no, no.

I don't really want to get into details about any of that. Because that's not what I'm about.

To me, pride comes from within. It comes from a job well done.

Or in my case, a job done superbly. 

Mr. Al Martin, shame on you. You've set a bad example for kids, for fans. For the world.

I can only hope you've learned some very important life lessons from this experience.

1. That ultimately, if you lie, there are no ifs, ands or buts about it. You will get caught.

2. Instead of grandiose fabrications, people will respect you more if you focus on the true, positive aspects of your life, however big or small they may be.

3. I know this is supposed to be about you, but jeez, am I great or what?

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