Thursday, July 17, 2008

Multiple Choice

Question: I'm not as stupid as I look, am I?

A: Yes, actually, you are.
B: No, but it would be extraordinary if you were.
C: Wait - don't tell me - I know this one -
D: Is this a rhetorical question?

Stuck? That's OK. It's impossible to answer this question correctly. Which is to say, tactfully. If you start to say "yes," you are contradicting your questioner and that, one is told, is bad manners. It is always indiscreet to say "no." Any other answer will either come off as evasive, or be drowned out by the slurpy sound of sycophantic bootlicking. Our recommendation: distract the questioner, e.g. by feigning sharp chest pains or an attack of salmonella.

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