Ponder this:

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Brevity is the soul of wit

Remember Norm Crosby, aka The Master of Malaprop? I think he had been an accountant in New Jersey before he began to make his living as a comedian. The other day I thought of him. I was speaking by phone (at great length!) with a member of one of the village's lesser boards . . . that is to say, neither the mayor nor one of the trustees . . . and she was complaining about someone else making too many jokes at the meetings. 
Now. 
There are many many things, were it my place, to complain about as regards the behavior of people at the meetings of the board in question. Excessive humor would not be among my gripes. The woman to whom I was listening concluded her remarks about the jokey fellow with this:
"Nobody minds a little brevity now and then, but when it's over, it's over."
I didn't correct her, although I am quite sure, given the multiple-hour length of recent meetings, that she meant . . . levity.


It remains my own little private joke. 
It delights me!

18 comments:

esbboston said...

(It will be hour little secret)

June said...

Hah! Good one!

esbboston said...

It was a good won!

Blipfillypicklepoo said...

Oh, the humidity.

DJan said...

I sat here laughing and after reading the comments spent some time trying to think of some clever malaprop, but decided to simply appreciate the whole thing.

Friko said...

Brilliant! And I like that brevity is over when it's over.
Sensible woman, at least she knows what she means.

Barb said...

It delights me, too - especially at the expense of the grouchy woman.

Woodswalker said...

Good laugh! Thanks.

Retired English Teacher said...

I love these types of private little laughs and jokes.

English Rider said...

A pearl.

Tracy said...

these private jokes are always fun; even if we are the butt of the joke which I was once. I had a very proper older lady who was my supervisor for my first teaching job in special ed. and the start of school had begun and she called me to ask how things were going. So as I was talking to her about the buses, I said, 'the bus schedules are so erotic!' and the minute it was out of my mouth I knew I'd said the worng word; meant erratic!
I didn't know whether to address it so I didn't and hoped she hadn't heard :)

Pauline said...

A little short on humor, was she?

Calamity Janet said...

Why do you always say what I'm thinking?

Hilary said...

That's hilarious. I'm so glad you shared it. I had a freind who was constantly inadvertently playing with the English language. One of my favourites was her way of indicating that someone was the real deal who willing to give their most. "Oh, he went the whole ninechelada!"

Robin Malherbe said...

Love when people innocently make mistakes and don't realise it... And then they can't figure out why others are laughing so heartily.

Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

Brevity and levity -- they are both good! :)

LadyFi said...

That's hilarious!

Raining Iguanas said...

Simply nice to know there is someone who remember's Norm Crosby. Boy, could he sing! Loved his pudding commercials too!