"You're never too old to learn something stupid"
Sometimes you just need a headline or subhead to get your brain to fire on all cylinders. And there are other times when you need a good, catchy title (like I did for this article!).
The above headline ("never being too old to learn something stupid") and the following 52 sentences are called "Paraprosdokian Sentences." They might just do the trick for you in a future writing assignment (so bookmark this post right now!).
A "paraprosdokian" is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected in a way that causes the reader or listener to reframe or reinterpret the first part. It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect.
- A bus is a vehicle that runs twice as fast when you are after it as when you are in it.
- A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
- A diplomat is someone who can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you will look forward to the trip.
- Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won't expect it back.
- Behind every successful man is his woman. Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.
- Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.
- Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.
- I didn't fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian.
- I discovered I scream the same way whether I'm about to be devoured by a great white shark or if a piece of seaweed touches my foot.
- I used to be indecisive. Now I'm not sure.
- If 4 out of 5 people SUFFER from diarrhea... does that mean that one enjoys it?
- Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
- Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
- Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
- Some cause happiness wherever they go. Others whenever they go.
- Some people hear voices. Some see invisible people. Others have no imagination whatsoever.
- The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list.
- There's a fine line between cuddling and holding someone down so they can't get away.
- To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.
- War does not determine who is right - only who is left.
- Why do Americans choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America?
- You are such a good friend that if we were on a sinking ship together and there was only one life jacket... I'd miss you heaps and think of you often.
- You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice.
- You're never too old to learn something stupid.
- I always take life with a grain of salt, ...plus a slice of lemon, ...and a shot of tequila.
- Evening news is where they begin with "Good evening," and then proceed to tell you why it isn't.
- Politicians and diapers have one thing in common. They should both be changed regularly, and for the same reason.
- Knowledge is power, and power corrupts. So study hard and be evil.
- Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?
- I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn't work that way. So I stole a bike and asked for forgiveness.
- Money can't buy happiness, but it sure makes misery easier to live with.
- How is it one careless match can start a forest fire, but it takes a whole box to start a campfire?
- My mother never saw the irony in calling me a son-of-a-bitch. The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
- The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
- The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!
- Some people are like Slinkies ... not really good for anything, but you can't help smiling when you see one tumble down the stairs.
- Hospitality: making your guests feel like they're at home, even if you wish they were.
- Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.
- I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.
- A bank is a place that will lend you money, if you can prove that you don't need it.
- Whenever I fill out an application, in the part that says "If an emergency, notify:" I put "DOCTOR."
- Hallmark Card: "I'm so miserable without you, it's almost like you're still here."
- I want to die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather... Not screaming and yelling like the passengers in his car.
- When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water.
- To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.
- Dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool and throw them fish?
- If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of payments.
- I thought I wanted a career; turns out I just wanted pay checks.
- We never really grow up; we only learn how to act in public.
- If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong.
- If you are supposed to learn from your mistakes, why do some people have more than one child?
- My psychiatrist told me I was crazy and I said I want a second opinion. He said okay, you're ugly too.
© 2011 John M. Fox. All Rights Reserved.
John Fox is the Founder and President of Venture Marketing, a B2B consulting firm that helps business owners get their sales and marketing un-stuck. For more, follow John on LinkedIn