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What sort of lies have been told in the Lomans house?
What sort of lies have been told in the Lomans' house? At least three.
This is a good question that goes to the heart of the play. Just before his final conversation with Willy, Biff tells Happy, "We never told the truth for ten minutes in this house." Happy denies it, but Biff has acknowledged the truth, finally, and intends to tell it at the play's conclusion.
Some of the specific lies told in the Loman family would include these: Biff and Happy lied to their father about Biff's stealing Bill Oliver's pen; Biff lied to Willy about having a follow-up appointment with Oliver; the boys lied to their mother about the events in the restaurant; Willy lies to his family about the hose he had hidden in the basement; years before, Biff had lied to his parents about why he had had no address for three months (he had been in jail for theft); Happy lies about his "important" job.
Finally, the most traumatic experience in Biff's life was made worse by Willy's lies. When Biff found his father in the hotel room with one of his buyer's secretary, Willy told one lie after another to cover up the truth of his betrayal of Biff's mother. Willy said the woman was a buyer. She lived in the room down the hall. Her room had to be painted because she showed merchandise to customers in her room. She was in Willy's room because her room was being painted. Biff bought none of it, and this incident ruptured his and Willy's relationship permanently. It was the first time Biff realized what a liar his father was. In Biff's words, a "phony little fake."
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