When you need to know what to say and how to say it — in convenient elevator pitch form

Whoa hey, thanks for holding the door! I mean, assuming you were pushing the doors-open button and not the doors-closed button, haha. Ever wondered what to say in awkward conversations like this one? Well, what you need is WIT, and by wit I mean spontaneous creativity. This book is the result of deep dive into the backstories of some of the wittiest people who ever lived — Great Wits ranging from Oscar Wilde to Jay-Z. The goal: To find out what made them so witty, and what we can learn from it. Oh, and it’s zippy and fun and filled with cartoons and quizzes and zingers freely available for your use next time you’re stuck in an elevator like this one. Here’s my floor. Bye!


"I've had a perfectly wonderful evening, but this wasn't it." - Groucho Marx

"History repeats itself. Historians repeat each other." - Max Beerbohm

"What are a friend's books for if not to be borrowed?" - Tom Stoppard

“There are two kinds of people in the world: those who divide the world into two kinds of people, and those who do not.” - Robert Benchley

"Apologies have nothing to do with you. They are balloons in the sky. They may never land. They may even choke a bird." - Amy Poehler

"He had the look of one who had drunk the cup of life and found a dead beetle at the bottom." - P.G. Wodehouse

"A pun is the lowest form of humor—when you don't think of it first." - Oscar Levant

"Love is not the dying moan of a distant violin ... it's the triumphant twang of a bedspring" - S.J. Perelman

"A day without sunshine is like, you know, night." - @SteveMartinToGo

"Life is something that happens when you can't get to sleep." - Fran Lebowitz

"I want my children to have all the things I couldn’t afford. Then I want to move in with them." -
Phyllis Diller

"Everybody does have a book in them, but in most cases that's where it should stay." - Christopher Hitchens

"I don’t like Chinese food, but I don’t write articles trying to prove it doesn’t exist." - Tina Fey

"I like a woman with a head on her shoulders. I hate necks." - @SteveMartinToGo

"I've lost all capacity for disbelief. I'm not sure that I could even rise to a little gentle scepticism." - Tom Stoppard

"The four most over-rated things in life are champagne, lobster, anal sex, and picnics." - Christopher Hitchens

"In the real world people dropped names based on their renown. In college, people dropped names based on their obscurity." - J. Eugenides

"Authors and actors and artists and such - Never know nothing, and never know much." - Dorothy Parker

"I don't believe in God, but I miss him." - Julian Barnes

"Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened" Winston Churchill

"The radio station was playing Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake, a sure sign that things were much worse than they appeared" - @Shteyngart

"If you love something, let it go.
If you don't love something, definitely let it go.
Basically, just drop everything, who cares"
- @bjnovak

"If a black cat crosses your path, it signifies that the animal is going somewhere." - Groucho Marx

"A restaurant on the moon could not have had less atmosphere." - Geoff Dyer

"I'm going to memorize your name and throw my head away." - Oscar Levant

"Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip."
- Winston Churchill

"I love children, especially when they cry, for then someone takes them away." - Nancy Mitford

"Of course I talk to myself. I like a good speaker, and I appreciate an intelligent audience." - Dorothy Parker

"Inelegantly, and without my consent, time passed." - @Miranda_July

"Surely: the adverb of a man without an argument." - Edward St. Aubyn