According to popular thought, George Washington
chopped down a cherry tree in his youth. His father goes outside
, see's his brand spankin' new cherry tree
chopped down, and young George trying hard to look innocent
while concealing an ax
-- a difficult task, to say the least.
Father: "George, did you chop down this cherry tree?"
George: "Father, I cannot tell a lie. I chopped down this cherry tree with my ax."
Aw.. how nice. See, America must be a good place if it's founding father was incapable of telling a lie.
Only, this didn't happen. The whole cherry tree incident was a story thought up by one of George Washington's biographers in order to make the biography more interesting. Unfortunetly, it stuck around, and most people don't know the truth.