Need funny one liners to perk up your posting?
Paraprosdokians are clever, surprising sayings, where the ending presents an unexpected twist.
They can be witty and wonderful quotes to share on Facebook and Twitter.
Check out this extensive list and pick out a few favorites.
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It’s hard to explain puns to kleptomaniacs because they always take things literally.
A paraprosdokian is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence, phrase, or larger discourse is surprising or unexpected in a way that causes the reader or listener to reframe or reinterpret the first part.
It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect.
Some paraprosdokians not only change the meaning of an early phrase, but they also play on the double meaning of a particular word, creating a form of syllepsis. source
This long word comes from two Greek words meaning “beyond expectation.”
So challenge your friends’ and fans’ expectations with these witty one liners.
Do you like a play on words, or on a stage?
One liners about life
The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction has to make sense.
Human genius has its limits while human stupidity does not. ~Alexandre Dumas
The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education. ~Einstein
If everything seems under control, you’re just not going fast enough. ~Andretti
A problem is really only a fact that someone is resisting.
A bus is a vehicle that runs twice as fast when you are after it as when you are in it.
There are 10 kinds of people in the world: Those that understand binary and those that don’t.
Evening news is where they begin with “Good evening” and then proceed to tell you why it isn’t.
Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?
Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.
I tried to drown my sorrows, but the bastards learned how to swim. ~Frida Kahlo
Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.
Being smart is knowing how to get out of a tough situation. Being wise is not getting into it in the first place.
When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water.
I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn’t work that way. So I stole a bike and asked for forgiveness.
Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose. ~Senna
Some people exist as a consequence of their actions, others take action towards their consequences.
It is a terrible thing to see and have no vision. ~Helen Keller
Before you criticize a man, walk a mile in his shoes. That way, you will be a mile away and he won’t have any shoes.
Always swim or dive with a friend. It reduces your chance of shark attack by 50%.
Sarcastic one liners
You’re not yourself today. It’s nice.
Your argument is sound, just sound, lots of sound.
I’m not being rude. You’re just insignificant.
I didn’t say it was your fault; I said I was blaming you.
Some cause happiness wherever they go. Others, whenever they go. ~Oscar Wilde
Silence is golden, duct tape is silver.
The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it’s still on the list.
At the art of giving, he stops at nothing.
I used to be conceited, but now I’m perfect.
My days of not taking you seriously are coming to a middle.
Build it and they will complain.
Hospitality: making your guests feel like they’re at home, even if you wish they were.
Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.
It’s the least I can do, and I always like to do the least.
Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
I would like to take you seriously, but to do so would be an affront to your intelligence.
I hate to say “I told you so” so I’m going to shout it really loud.
If I agreed with you, we’d both be wrong.
I was going to give him a nasty look, but he already had one.
Laughter is the best medicine, if you don’t have insurance.
They said I could become anything. So I became a disappointment.
I’ve had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn’t it. ~Groucho Marx or Hugh Herbert
A modest man, who has much to be modest about.
I can’t thank you enough, you’re never bloody happy are you?
Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.
They need a big check, a reality check that is…
She often stood outside in order to be outstanding.
Nothing is possible. I’ve been doing it for years.
Paraprosdokian one liners about love and relationships
Take my wife—please. ~Henny Youngman
Henny Youngman was the first comedian to use the line “Take my wife—please!” Per wikipedia, he later explained it as a misinterpretation: in the mid-1930s he took his wife to a show and asked the usher to escort his wife to a seat. But his request was taken as a joke, and Youngman used the line countless times ever after.
“Take my wife—please!” has been incorrectly attributed to Rodney Dangerfield, who made a lot of quips about his wife, and that one has stuck, even though he didn’t originate it.
If I had a dollar for every woman that found me unattractive, they’d eventually find me attractive.
Women sometimes make fools of men, but most guys are the do-it-yourself type.
Sometimes I wake up grumpy. Other times I let her sleep.
I miss my ex so often, I really need a laser sight.
The last time I was someone’s type, I was donating blood.
Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves. ~Einstein
Marriage is a great institution, but I’m not ready for an institution. ~Mae West
He taught me housekeeping; when I divorce I keep the house. ~Zsa Zsa Gabor
Marriage to me brings out the best in a woman: chastity.
Behind every successful man is his woman. Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.
Behind every great man there’s a woman, rolling her eyes. ~Jim Carrey in Bruce Almighty
I admit, I have a tremendous sex drive. My boyfriend lives forty miles away. ~Phyllis Diller
I had beautiful wives, every one beautiful, talented and now rich.
I’m missing you, but my aim is improving.
Paraprosdokians about women
Women will never be equal to men until they can walk down the street with a bald head and a beer gut… and still think they are sexy!
Women’s rights impress me as much as their lefts.
I saw a woman wearing a sweatshirt with “Guess” on it…so I said “Implants?”
She got her good looks from her father; he’s a plastic surgeon.
I’m a heroine addict. I need to be with women who have saved someone’s life.
I always thought it was polite to open the door for a lady, but she just screamed and flew out of the plane…
She looks as though she’s been poured into her clothes, and forgot to say ‘when’.
A woman’s place is in charge.
Paraprosdokians about men
We can repair what your husband fixed.
Of course men can multitask, we read in the bathroom.
Paraprosdokians about kids
The face of a child can say it all, especially the mouth part of the face.
I saw a sign that said “watch for children” and I thought, “That sounds like a fair trade” ~Demetri Martin
If you are supposed to learn from your mistakes, why do some people have more than one child?
Children should be seen and not herded.
My father had a profound influence on me. He was a lunatic. ~Spike Milligan
If at first you don’t succeed, blame your parents. ~Marcelene Cox
One liner jokes about aging
Nostalgia isn’t what it used to be.
You’re never too old to learn something stupid.
Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.
In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years. ~Abraham Lincoln
I don’t do drugs anymore. I get the same effect just standing up these days.
I want to die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather, not screaming and yelling like the passengers in his car.
We don’t stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
Better over the hill than under it!
If you wait, all that happens is that you get older. ~Andretti
We never really grow up; we only learn how to act in public.
I have a lot of growing up to do. I realized that the other day inside my fort. ~Zach Galifianakis
The worst time to have a heart attack is during a game of charades. ~Demetri Martin
Well, I’m having a great day. Woke up this morning, got out of bed, went to the bathroom. In that order!
I like you. You remind me of when I was young and stupid.
Growing old is tough; not growing old is worse.
To keep fit my grandmother walks five miles a day. She’s 97 now and we have no idea where she is.
One time a guy handed me a picture and said “Here’s a picture of me when I was younger.” Every picture is of you when you were younger. ~Mitch Hedberg
Funny one-liners about money
Money is the root of all wealth.
Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won’t expect it back.
If you think nobody cares you’re alive, try missing a couple payments.
Money can’t buy happiness, but it sure makes misery easier to live with.
All I ask is the chance to prove that money can’t make me happy. ~Spike Milligan
I thought I wanted a career; turns out I just wanted paychecks.
A bank is a place that will lend you money, if you can prove that you don’t need it.
A bad banker quickly loses interest.
A banker will always lend you an umbrella on a sunny day.
Where there’s a will, I want to be in it.
Paraprosdokians about politics and government
I don’t approve of political jokes. I’ve seen too many of them get elected.
War does not determine who is right… only who is left.
A fine is a tax for doing bad, so a tax must be a fine for doing good.
It has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried.
I belong to no organized party. I am a Democrat. ~Will Rogers
Why do Americans choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America?
A diplomat is someone who can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you will look forward to the trip.
I was asked to name all the presidents…I thought they already had names. ~Demetri Martin
You can always count on governments to do the right thing – after they’ve tried everything else.
A fool and his money are soon elected.
One liner paraprosdokians about food and drink
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
If tomato is a fruit, is ketchup a smoothie?
I had a chicken finger that was so big, it was a chicken hand.
You are what you eat, which may contains nuts.
I removed all the bad food from the house. It was delicious.
I ate a clock yesterday, it was very time consuming.
Eat what you want and if someone lectures you about it, eat them too!
I try to watch what I eat and yet my eyes just aren’t quick enough.
There are a bunch of different crunches that affect the abs … my favorite is Nestle’s.
I always take life with a grain of salt… plus a slice of lemon… and a shot of tequila.
As a child my family’s menu consisted of two choices: take it or leave it.
Celery is 95% water and 100% not pizza.
Paraprosdokians about cats, dogs, and more
In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods; they have not forgotten this. ~Terry Pratchett
A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way. ~Mark Twain
You might also enjoy these Mark Twain quotes.
Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.
Everything comes to those who wait… except a cat. ~Andretti
Pet spiders are cheaper to buy off the web.
Dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool.
Dogs have owners, cats have staff.
And more paraprosdokians!
To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.
A person who won’t read has no advantage over one who can’t read.
Happiness is the absence of striving for happiness. ~Chuang Tzu
The day before something is a breakthrough, it’s a crazy idea. ~Peter H.Diamandis
He felt a sense of building excitement as he headed to the DIY store.
Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance. ~Confucius
Two wrongs don’t make a right, three lefts do.
Two guys walked into a bar, the third one ducked.
The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
Strong emotions are stupid and should be hated.
I was going to wear my camouflage shirt today, but I couldn’t find it.
Take my advice — I’m not using it.
Atheism is always not for prophet.
I wondered why the baseball was getting bigger. Then it hit me.
If you see a man running from a tiger, run faster than he does—you can’t outrun the tiger and you don’t have to.
If I could say a few words, I would be a better public speaker. ~Homer Simpson
Go to heaven for the climate, Hell for the company. ~Mark Twain
Give a lawyer a fire, he’ll be warm for a day. Set a lawyer on fire, he’ll be warm for the rest of his life.
Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.
The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once. ~Einstein
A sure cure for seasickness is to sit under a tree. ~Spike Milligan
It was impossible to get a conversation going, everybody was talking too much. ~Yogi Berra
If the enemy is in range remember so are you.
I can read minds, but I’m illiterate.
I don’t know why they told me I’m innumerate, it doesn’t add up.
I haven’t slept for ten days, because that would be too long. ~Mitch Hedberg
Experts know more and more about less and less till they know absolutely everything about nothing.
Advertising messages have to be made loud and clear for the hard of thinking.
The fly was very close to being called the land, because that’s what it does half the time.
When I was 10, I beat up the school bully. His arms were in casts. That’s what gave me the courage.
It’s easy to tell when a lawyer is lying as their lips move.
Broken promises don’t upset me. I just think, why did they believe me?
Any time three New Yorkers get into a cab without an argument, a bank has just been robbed. ~Phyllis Diller
When you forgive, you in no way change the past – but you sure do change the future. ~Bernard Meltzer
There is no revenge so complete as forgiveness. ~Josh Billings
I shall be an autocrat, that’s my trade; and the good Lord will forgive me, that’s his. ~Catherine the Great
The first step in building staircases often squeaks.
If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the precipitate.
Time is an illusion, lunchtime doubly so. ~Ford Prefect
Some people hear voices. Some see invisible people. Others have no imagination whatsoever.
The most important social element in modern computer game development is probably still beer.
I’m interested in nothing, with the right story I can make almost anything from it.
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 clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
The practice of mindfulness may show you what’s so, further enlightenment will show you, so what.
You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice.
The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!
They had lost the art of conversation but not, unfortunately, their powers of speech.
If you’re telekinetic raise my hand.
The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.
I used to be indecisive. Now I’m not sure. ~Tommy Cooper
Speed up your smartphone, throw it out a 10th story window.
Newton stayed up all night puzzling the movement of the sun. Then it dawned on him.
A broken pencil is pointless.
To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.
The car stopped on a dime, which unfortunately was in a pedestrian’s pocket.
It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt.
Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.
Whenever I fill out an application, in the part that says in an emergency, notify, I put “a doctor.”
The saying “Getting there is half the fun” became obsolete with the advent of budget airlines.
The light at the end of the tunnel is the headlamp of the train.
Never leave till tomorrow what you can immediately forget.
One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got in my pajamas I’ll never know.
I sleep eight hours a day. And at least ten at night.
I don’t know what your problem is, but I’ll bet it’s hard to pronounce.
All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.
If you see a bomb technician running, try to keep up with him.
I live in my own little world. They know me here.
Work is the curse of the drinking classes.
Honesty may be the best policy, but it’s important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy. ~George Carlin
A contractor is a chap who steals your watch and charges for telling the time.
It’s the early bird that gets the worm. But it is the early worm that gets eaten by the bird.
The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off. ~Gloria Steinem
Is it wrong that only one company makes the game Monopoly?
I hate Russian dolls, they’re so full of themselves.
This is not a novel to be tossed aside lightly. It should be thrown with great force.
If you can smile when things go wrong, you have someone in mind to blame.
I’m great at multi-tasking. I can waste time, be unproductive, and procrastinate all at once.
Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.
No matter how much you push the envelope, it’ll still be stationery.
Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.
To err is human, to really mess up though, that takes a computer.
Today’s computers are so fast they can screw up a billion times a second.
He who laughs last thinks slowest.
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I hope you enjoyed my carefully curated collection of one liners, paraprosdokian style!
Phil Cullum says
You kist: Take my wife—please. ~Rodney Dangerfield
Actually, it was Henny Youngman who used the line whenever he spoke.
Louise Myers says
You’re right – he was the first. I’ll give him the credit!
Charles Dvorak says
My previous employer wrote on my letter of recommendation – you will be lucky if you can get this man to work for you.
Please don’t credit me – it’s not my joke.
Louise Myers says
Oh dear! I hope he meant it in the positive way 😉
Phil Cullum says
But, if he did, this old joke wouldn’t have a paraprosdokian flavor, which was surely the intent.
Louise Myers says
Ah, I didn’t realize it was a “known” joke. Otherwise it would risk being a letter of non-recommendation!
Bing Chang says
Bing Chang’s Paraprosdokians:
I am old and now, for sure I know that I know nothing for sure.
Where there is will, find someone to pay the way.
Nothing ventured, nothing of pains
Blessed are Robinhood speculators, for they will inherit a bubble.
Your guess is as good as mine. That makes us both idiots.
Every cloud has a silver lining, until you find out that it is plated.
Easier said than done, I am done with what I said, then what?
I see the light at the end of the tunnel, it’s a warning light.
The news came straight from the horse’s mouth; it turned out to be a Trojan horse.
I do not see the wood for the trees in the smoke of Caldor fire.
Louise Myers says
Thanks for your contributions 🙂
Dr Neil Naftolin says
A civil servant recalls the 3 most difficult years of his life……..Grade one
Civil servants never look out of their windows in the morning,,,they would have nothing to do in the afternoon
Someone broke into the police station and stole the toilet, and the police have nothing to go on
Louise Myers says