Saturday, May 07, 2011

More Paraprosdokians

This past Wednesday, I started this list of figures 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. Here’s the wrap-up of them. Enjoy!

Why do Americans choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America?

A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.

You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice.

The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!

Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won't expect it back.

Money can't buy happiness, but it sure makes misery easier to live with.

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. (That one is for author Ann Summerville. Read my review of her book, if you’re wondering why.)

I used to be indecisive. Now I'm not sure.

I always take life with a grain of salt, plus a slice of lemon, and a shot of tequila.

You're never too old to learn something stupid.

To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.

Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.

Thanks to my “word wizard” Bill Wheeless for these paraprosdokians.


  1. I really love clever! Thanks for sharing them, Helen. :)

  2. What fun these were!

    I also scream the same way :)

  3. These are laugh out loud funny! I'm glad I wasn't drinking anything at the time.

  4. Now I'll have to edit my list for Twitter #quote. Fun post. Thanks.
    Nash Black

  5. I especially like the one about the clear conscience. That explains so much!

  6. Great. Very funny, in particular the first one >:)

    Cold As Heaven

  7. These are all *so* funny! I laughed harder at each successive one, so it's impossible to choose a favourite. I doubt I'll ever be able to pronounce parapr... porarp...what they're called though!

    Judy, South Africa

  8. I love these. Keep 'em coming. :)

    And a very happy Mother's Day!

  9. Whoever thought these up is quite funny, but it wasn't me - unfortunately.

  10. Great stuff. I really love the one "you're never too old to learn something stupid"--sure hits home. Ha!

  11. Christa, that one fits me as well!

  12. You guys! I'm still trying to figure out how to pronounce 'paraprosdokians'!

  13. When you figure it out, Christopher, let the rest of us know how to pronounce it.

  14. These are so much fun. I've never known what the term for them was, but The Old Silly done larnt him a new word t'day - paraprosdokians! Pretty cool. Thanks for sharing. :-)

    Marvin D Wilson

  15. Love the The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas! That's great.

  16. Stephen, that's a perfect one for writers, isn't it!

  17. Good ones. I could relate to many of them, especially about being indecisive. LOL


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