Some people have the talent for excellent, witty comebacks. Their sharp minds and senses of humor are often enviable to us. How often have we composed the absolutely perfect witty retort to somebody’s comment…hours or days later? Oh, if we could only have access to a time machine.
Tales and anecdotes regarding quick, witty replies have been cherished over the centuries. The ancient Greeks were famous for their wisdom and wit.
“The Spartan Dienekes was told that the Persian archers were so numerous that when they fired their volleys, their arrows would blot out the sun. He responded with “So much the better, we’ll fight in the shade””–Herodotus
The best repartee is attributed to those rare folks, who under some discomfort, keep their minds clear and deliver a swift and perfect retort. Most of us rarely enjoy such clever moments while under stress. We either blush and take the insult or stammer some lame response. The appearance of the perfect retort, later on, is called “staircase wit”.
“Peter Lorre: You despise me, don’t you? Humphrey Bogart: Well, if I gave it any thought, I would.”
My favorite writer was famous for his wit and repartee.
“Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?”
“I didn’t attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it.” -Mark Twain
“An elderly German gentleman glancing at another man: You know, you look a lot like Herr Kisinger.
Kisinger: A lot of people tell me that.”
“I feel so miserable without you; it’s almost like having you here.” -Stephen Bishop
“He has Van Gogh’s ear for music.” -Billy Wilder
I hope these seeds of repartee sprout something original from you.