Marderos Nersesian

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Marderos Nersesian, a "full-blooded Armenian" known as Mardy, is a South Milwaukee native who for 38 years taught art in Racine, 33 of them at Horlick High School. Nersesian's fib brought home a prize, as he became the World Champion Liar, at least according to the tall tale-loving Burlington Liars Club's 2004 annual contest. Racine - Marderos Nersesian was inspired to lie while sitting, gazing at a rain-swollen, windswept lake near his cabin in Phillips. Nersesian's winning entry in the club's annual contest came from the lakeside:

"We had so much rain during the spring and summer seasons," the Racine resident wrote, "there were puddles on our lake."

The puddles story was Nersesian's first entry in the contest, which the club says attracted more than 300 stories from 11 states.

"I enjoy witty things. I enjoy laughing. I enjoy jokes," Nersesian said. "You've got to have laughter in your life somewhere."

Maybe it's no knee-slapper, but any original thought that coaxes even a grin ain't all bad. Nersesian appreciated the parchment certificate he received but wasn't sure he'll try to reclaim his title next year.

"I don't want to make a reputation as a liar," he said.