James Hayman: One of my great pleasures is chuckling over the wit of others. In this blog I’d like to share a few of the great one (and two and three) liners from some of my favorite writers, performers, actors, comics, quarterbacks and catchers. In my opinion the all time champ is, without question, Dorothy Parker. But others also deserve a place in the pantheon of wit. Here are just a few examples of cleverness that I enjoy repeating at cocktail parties when conversation fails and the guests’ spirits need to be picked up. If you have some of your own favorites, please share them with the rest of us.
“I used to be Snow White-but I drifted.” Mae West.
“You can lead a whore to culture, but you can’t make her think.” –Dorothy Parker
“I once had a rose named after me and I was very flattered until I read the description in the catalogue: No good in a bed, but fine against a wall.” –Eleanor Roosevelt.
“Until I was thirteen I thought my name was SHUT UP.”- Joe Namath
“I don’t want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve it through not dying.”-Woody Allen.
“If all the girls attending this year’s Yale senior prom were laid end to end, I wouldn’t be a bit surprised.”-Dorothy Parker.
“The Statue of Liberty is no longer saying ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses.’ These days she’s got a baseball bat and is yelling ‘You want a piece of me?’ “- Robin Williams.
“What do you get when you cross an insomniac, an agnostic and a dyslexic? Someone who stays up all night wondering if there is a Dog.” –Groucho Marx.
“I’d love to have a martini, two at the very most, three I’m under the table, four I’m under the host”-Dorothy Parker.
“You’d better cut that pizza into four slices. I’m not hungry enough to eat six.”- Yogi Berra.
“His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork.”-Mae West.
“I tend to place my wives under a pedestal.” –Woody Allen.
“He has Van Gogh’s ear for music.” –Billy Wilder.
“If women ran the world we wouldn’t have wars. Just intense negotiations every twenty eight days.” –Robin Williams.
“What if everything is an illusion and nothing exists? In that case I definitely overpaid for my carpet.”-Woody Allen.
“Of course I talk to myself. I not only like a good speaker, I also appreciate an intelligent audience.”-Dorothy Parker.
“I’m not a member of any organized political party. I’m a Democrat.” –Will Rogers.
“Sex without love is a meaningless experience. But as far as meaningless experiences go, it’s pretty damn good.” –Woody Allen.
“Outside of a dog a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read.”- Groucho Marx.
“Puritanism may be defined as the haunting fear that somebody, somewhere may actually be having a good time.”- H.L. Mencken.
“The towels were so thick in that hotel, I could hardly close my suitcase.”-Yogi Berra.
“I am is reportedly the shortest sentence in the English language. Could it be that I do is the longest?” –George Carlin.
“Tell him I was too fucking busy—or maybe it was vice-versa.” –Dorothy Parker (message to her agent.)
“The food here is not only terrible, the portions are too small.” –Woody Allen.
“A fool and his money are soon elected.” –Will Rogers.
“I’ve been in more laps than a napkin.”- Mae West.
“Always go to other people’s funerals. Otherwise they won’t go to yours.”-Yogi Berra.
“What’s the difference between an enzyme and a hormone? You can’t hear an enzyme.”-Dorothy Parker.
“I find television very educational. Every time somebody turns one on, I go in the other room and read a book.”-Groucho Marx.
“’I’d call him a sadistic, hippophilic necrophile. But that would be beating a dead horse.” Woody Allen.
“Anyone who hates small children and cute animals can’t be all bad.”-W.C. Fields.
“I only like two kinds of men, domestic and imported.”-Mae West.
“I’m not going to buy my kids an encyclopedia. Let them walk to school like I did.”-Yogi Berra.
“My grandmother started walking five miles a day when she was sixty. She’s ninety seven now and we don’t know where the hell she is.” –Ellen DeGeneres.
“Bisexuality immediately doubles your chances for a date on Saturday night.” –Woody Allen.
“A hard man is good to find.” –Mae West.
“Reminds me of my safari in Africa. Somebody forgot the corkscrew and for several days we had nothing to eat but food and water.” –W.C. Fields.
“This is not a book to be tossed away lightly. It should be thrown with great force.” –Dorothy Parker.
“Women should be obscene and not heard.” –Groucho Marx.
“If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re still happy.” –Dorothy Parker.