spin (one) a tale

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spin (one) a tale

To tell a lie or fictionalized version of the truth in order to convince someone of something or to avoid the consequences of something. Don't you dare spin me a tale about being at the library. I want to know exactly where you were tonight. I suspect he's just spinning a tale about where all that money came from.
See also: spin, tale

spin (somebody) a ˈyarn/ˈtale

tell somebody a story, usually a long one, which is often not true: She came an hour late and spun him a yarn about her car breaking down.Sailors used to spin yarns (= long threads) to make ropes. They were also famous for telling unlikely stories of their adventures, which is perhaps the origin of the idiom.
See also: spin, tale, yarn
References in periodicals archive ?
After many years of travel, research, and teaching in Africa Musgrove spins a tale of traditional Ghana.
In this last novel by the author of The Shoes of the Fisherman, The Devil's Advocate, and The Clowns of God, longtime Vatican watcher Morris West spins a tale of personal and corporate guilt and redemption, a battle between faith and despair waged in the heart of a disciple.