After I changed the name of the photo embedded in this post, I find we're getting a lot less traffic from people (especially, and curiously, from Europe) looking for images of Bob Seger.
What's notable, though, is how many people seem to be trolling the internets looking for snappy retorts. Here's a sampling of some of the search phrases that have led people to our blog recently:
what do you come back with when you have a bad witty moment
my best witty comeback
witty comebacks against sexist comments
witty sexist comebacks
snappy comebacks teacher comments
snappy comeback kids
Now that the "Bob Seger bump" has been eliminated, this post about witty comebacks is the second most visited post on our blog, after Tom's post about "Jim Dandy". Apparently, bad 70s rock is a popular topic, Bob Seger aside.
I find it reassuring to know that so many people feel completely impotent in the face of an unexpected insult. Because when it happens to you, you always imagine that anyone else would have had the sense to defend themselves, and to do so instantly and elegantly. Apparently, though, the vast majority of us stand there slack-jawed, and then berate ourselves later for not having the wherewithal to say something clever in our defense.
So no wonder people turn to the web for help. If I could invent an instant retort generator that folks could carry around with them, or maybe even an implant that would feed the perfect comeback directly into one's brain when needed, I'd be a rich woman.
Barring those unlikely developments, readers, I'm turning to you for help. What advice or quick-draw options can you provide for your fellow sufferers? Are there some multipurpose comebacks that work in a variety of situations that one can keep on hand for emergencies? Or maybe you can just offer some balm to ease the wounds inflicted by unexpected insults--is there something comforting you say to yourself afterwards that neutralizes the pain?
But here's the option that interests me: are there some of you out there willing to admit to inflicting the kind of zingers that most deserve a zippy comeback? And if so, are you insightful enough, and brave enough, to tell us what your victims might say in response that would put you in your place?
Somehow, though, I suspect that those who do the insulting are too clueless to know what they've done, much less reflect on it. Which, I suppose, gives the rest of us a perverse sense of victory...
[If only the "Ass air freshners (sic)" pictured above would work to clear the air of asinine comments. Thanks to failblog.org for the thought, though!|