Damn you Tim Roth. Damn you.

by Andrea Mulder-Slater

Tim Roth has taken over my life. 

It all began at the holidays when I noticed Geoff making frequent retreats to the bedroom with his laptop and a set of headphones.

Me: Um, what are you watching?

Geoff: Lie to me.

MeI’m pregnant.

Geoff: WHAT?!

Me: You said I should lie to you.

Geoff: Well played.

Turns out that while searching for a Tim Roth movie on Netflix, Geoff had fallen victim to a television series called Lie to me.  He told me how the show was about Cal Lightman, a deception expert - played by Roth - who reads people by analyzing their micro-expressions. He further explained that the crime series was based on the real life research of a behavioral scientist called Ekman.

Analyzing. Behavioural scientist. Micro-expressions. It all sounded about as exciting as disinfecting my loofah sponge.

But Geoff was captivated and like a devoted addict, he invited me to give it a try.  Y’know, just once.

I thought about it. I really did. But then I remembered how years earlier, Geoff had dragged me into his own private hell of Dallas reruns. It took me the better part of six months to get the Ewings out of my system. I still can’t hear the theme song - or the name Bobby - without twitching a little bit.  

Before I knew it, he had our friends hooked, and reaching out for help, “We stayed up till 1:30am watching that darned Lie to me. It’s really good and we kept saying 'just one more'. So now we’re total zombies.” 

Then, he got my mom. She watched six episodes on her first night. Six episodes! She was so exhausted the next morning; she tried to start the car with a butter knife.

My aunt was next on the list.  She went hardcore and started with Season Three… four at once. We’re not sure if she’ll ever be the same again.

When Geoff offered me a late-night bag of BBQ chips if I promised to sit through just one episode, it was only a matter of time before I too succumbed to temptation.  I saw the pilot and it was delicious – even better than the chips. That was five nights ago.

Then, a trend began. Night after night, episode after episode, Geoff and I waited for the day to be over – for our 3 year old daughter to be in bed – so we could watch Lightman, Foster, Loker, Torres and the rest of them, suss out the liars and the cheats. Now, with Season One behind us – and three episodes into Season Two – there’s no turning back.

I’ve got giant bags under my eyes, I’m walking into walls and I’m pretty sure I’ve been asleep for most of today. I might be napping now.

And that’s not the worst of it. I can’t look at another human being without going all “Lightman” on them. I’m looking for dishonesty at every turn. I'm a deception detective. 

At the coffee shop…

Me: Is that coffee fresh?
Kid: Sure it is.
Me: You just touched the back of your neck.
Kid: I had an itch.
Me: You’re lying!

At the post office…

Clerk: Nice day.
Me: You don’t really mean that, do you?
Clerk: Huh?
Me: What is it about today that makes you feel contempt? Is it the rain? What happened to you in the rain?
Clerk: What? I’m fine.
Me: Your lying!

In the grocery store…

Me: Can you help me find the oat bran?
Grocer: We’re sold out.
Me: I believe you.
Grocer: Good, now can you please stop staring at my nostrils?

I’m a freaking monster. I’m even speaking with a bloody British accent.

Damn you Tim Roth for being… Just. That. Good.

Also – Geoff deserves a smack.
No, really.

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