Go to What I SHOULD Have Said... main page
Here is one story retold, albeit with a pithier ending:
Great Power, No Responsibility?
What happened: My manager is a huge witch... Sometimes when she asks me to follow her to her office, she will pass misplaced things on the floor, telling me she doesnt have to pick them up because shes the manager, so I did it for her, as if I were scooping up her droppings while walking a dog... One day I came into work, somewhat early, around 11am, and there was a store meeting shortly after. My manager mentioned a comforter set that had been sitting in the floor for the entire morning, and glared at me. (She was there since 7am, store opens at 9:30,) and why no one had bothered to pick it up. No normal associates had clocked in until around when I did, the others were service desk associates...
What I said: Nothing, to save my job.
What I SHOULD have said: If it was so apparent to you, and since no one else was here, why didnt you bother to pick it up? You have much more brawn than brainpower to handle such a task.
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!