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Here is one story retold, albeit with a pithier ending:
on holding the punk right.
What happened: On the 4th of July weekend, I was heading on my way to light fireworks with a lit punk. I was carrying it between my index and middle finger, like a ciggerette, but not intentionaly. Mind you i was 12. Anyway my step-brother, Sean, pointed it out to my dad, and they all had a good laugh at my expense. God knows why. But anyway, I was embarressed. It bugs me to this day.
What I said: I said nothing. Made a face, rolled my eyes, and undoubtedly blushed.
What I SHOULD have said: "sorry sean. Would you rather i hold it like this?" (between my thumb and forefinger, joint style.) then again, i wouldn't have even known what a joint was. If only.
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!