L’esprit de l’escalier

Have you ever had a conversation or date when you realize something you could’ve said something so incredibly clever (and pun-ny) that it would’ve blown away whoever you were with? The “blown away” can come from either shock (from a well-timed retort) or swooning (from an elegantly-placed commentary).

At the time though, you’re left speechless and you miss that perfect moment. The one time this did not happen has been documented as the NRB story. For my new readers, check that post out. It’s good for a laugh.

I found out today that the French actually have a phrase for this. I know! The French! The only thing they were previously good for was accordions, baguettes, and a building which I have only heard recently in reference to a sexual act – the Eiffel Tower. Also the French keep romancing all of our women away! UPDATE: everyone please stop taking this so personally, I am not seriously insulting the French. It’s just me regurgitating stereotypes in a (slightly offensive) fashion. Speaking of fashion and the French… JUST KIDDING. Calm down.

From Google search “stereotypical Frenchman”

Anyways, I found out that the French call the clever conversation piece the l’esprit de l’escalier which according to Google Translator means “the spirit of the staircase” (real elegant right?). Well, if you ask someone who actually speaks French, it is better interpreted as “staircase wit.” You know, like you get the idea for that witty thing to say only as you are almost home and in the staircase (probably holding a croissant in one hand and a bottle of wine in the other, also wearing a beret). 

Whether or not it it comes as l’esprit de l’escalier, I am going to start calling this piece of conversation the perfect puzzle piece response (or “P3”) and see if it catches on. Completely unrelated, here’s a picture of you-know-who. If you don’t know, it’s Taylor Swift. I guess this picture is marginally related because she’s on a staircase.

Don’t worry. I’ve got a great story which will build upon P3. I’m just laying the groundwork!


Related links
Katie G part 4: Blackout. The end.
CMB part 1: 2nd best line ever.


5 thoughts on “L’esprit de l’escalier

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  4. Pingback: Katie G part 4: Blackout. The end. « heylookchris

  5. Pingback: Cutie McBangs Part 1: My 2nd best line ever « heylookchris

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