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Thursday, September 2, 2010

Thinkin' Thursday - Paraprosdokian Sentences

My husband forwarded me an email he had received because he thought I would dig it. And, he was absolutely right. First off, a word I had never heard of. Then and explanation & some examples. So, on this installment of Thinkin' Thursday, I thought I would share.

What the heck is a paraprosdokian? According to the Uncyclopedia, he was a Greek hero - with a really bad name & an affinity for the girls. But, I digress, according to Wordnik, it is a figure of speech where the end of the phrase is surprising & unexpected. And that's where we come in.

Here are some examples:

The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list.

We never really grow up, we only learn how to act in public.

A bus station is where a bus stops. A train station is where a train stops. On my desk, I have a work station.

A bank is a place that will lend you money, if you can prove that you don't need it.

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

When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water.

Some people hear voices. Some see invisible people. Others have no imagination whatsoever.

A bus is a vehicle that runs twice as fast when you are after it as when you are in it.

Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

So here in lies the challenge. What paraprosdokian sentences can you come up with?

Happy Writing,



  1. You've come up with what should be my motto.

    We never really grow up, we only learn how to act in public.

    Only problem, I keep forgetting ... all sorts of things.

  2. You always give me a giggle. I thought of one of my own...

    Change happens, usually at the bottom of my purse.


  3. Fun post! Paraprosdokian is a new one for me.

  4. I am SO coming back to you with one of these...just need to do a bit more thinking...

  5. Okay, got it. It actually comes from a post I wrote earlier and just posted, so I'm plagiarizing me:

    We want to prove that we can do better than all those before us. Naturally, we can't.

    Eh? Eh?

  6. Nicki,
    I dig it!!
    Kind of like...
    We tried to reinvent the wheel, then it broke.

  7. Paraprosdokian is a common element found in teenage speach. Like, 'I know I wasn't supposed to, but I forgot.'

  8. i hopped on over from the bbq. here's my attempt:

    It was the worst day of his life. He couldn't have been happier.

  9. Shellie,
    Good point. Seeing as I have a couple of those creatures, I should have thought of it! Thanks for the reminder.

    Nicely done. I like it! Thanks for hangin'.