There really could be many reasons for it. It sounds like your friends were more sarcastic than liars, especially if their lies were blatantly obvious. Regardless of what they said, their words had little to no impact on your life, so why bother wasting your efforts judging them? I'm sure you accept them for who they are, bit I would encourage you to open your mind a bit, maybe even ask them. You did say you were "always curious"; I doubt they were always curious why you didnt join them on their shenanigans.I don't think any poster in this thread has come on here and claimed to never lie.
But let's not pretend lying is the golden secret to success.
Lying now and then is one thing. But if you are a habitual liar, it destroys your credibility.
I've known habitual liars, and I pretty much didn't believe anything they told me. In fact, most of their lies were transparent (as is, I suppose saying you're 6'0" when you're really 5'6"). But I always wondered what it was they hoped to gain from it. I never understood why they felt the need to lie about everything. There must have been some deep seated insecurity there.
I wouldnt say lying is some secret to success, but you have to know when and where to apply it. For example, a couple jobs ago, the company wanted 3 years of experience. I had one year until I doctored my resume. So I got the interview and she wanted to hire me on the spot. Would I have received this opportunity without adjusting my resume? Sure, I had a rough patch here and there, but that's part of learning and growing.
Then my current job, they asked my current salary, and I told them 20% more than I was making (another lie), and I ended up getting a 40% raise by changing jobs.
Then I asked for full remote work,they gave me 3 days a week. So I interviewed for another job, and said I needed remote work because it's important to me, but it was really to balance two jobs. Why? Just to see if I could...
Needless to say, I currently work a total of about 30 hours a week collecting 2 six figure salaries.
My mom, on the other hand, refuses to doctor her resume, she says its "dishonest"... and shes making 18/hr.
Now this is an extreme example, but I feel it elucidates the point. My main point is that you have to learn to navigate your life in a way that is beneficial. I suppose it's good that we have people who refuse to lie, they can continue to make the concessions for the others to step past them. As @guru1000 stated, be the water, and be willing to change. Rigid value systems dont allow for creative efforts to be fully employed.