Go to What I SHOULD Have Said... main page

Here is one story retold, albeit with a pithier ending:

From The Flying Racoon:

YES, my face hurts!

What happened: I was probably about 9 or 10 years old. I was on vacation with my dad, stepmom, older stepsister, and her two-faced friend who always acted sweet around adults, but would turn on me with stupid insults when no one was looking. This particular time, she chose to use a trick question: "Does your face hurt?"

What I said: I said "No" and she immediately responded with "Well it's KILLIN' ME" and then exploded with malevolent laughter, which my stepsister joined in on.

What I SHOULD have said: "yes, because I'm looking at YOU."

on the stairs

L'esprit d'escalier

The French call it l'esprit d'escalier, "the wit of the staircase," those biting ripostes that are thought of just seconds too late, on the way out of the room-or even, to tell the truth, days later. It's happened to you: you've suddenly thought of just what would put your foe in his or her place, but past the time when the arrow could sting its victim. You've stewed in your own juice ever since, and the chance for singeing repartee is gone forever.

Or is it?

Dorothy Parker or Oscar Wilde may have had the rapier wit to tweak their tormentors on the spot, but for the rest of us, we offer the Internet's only L'esprit d'escalier web site!