“May I join you, ladies?”
“I don’t know, you got a Platinum Card?”
“Hey baby, where you been all my life?”
I can’t zing. Dammit. Never could. The above are examples of zings from the past from one of my best friends, Kim. The girl can zing. I love that quality in men and women. I love it more because I can’t do it. Being able to zing makes a person that much more attractive. For Kim, she has to beat men off with a stick because they love it when she puts them down! She’s awesome. She does it in such a way that it can only be taken with love and a good hearted, self-deprecating chuckle.
I’ve asked her about it in the past. I’ve tried to probe her and learn her secret. But, like most of my friends, my constant inane prattling and questioning often bores them into submission and they’re left wondering what we were talking about in the first place.
I can’t think fast enough in the moment to zing a well-deserving recipient. It’s a gift. I’m in awe of people who can. Sometimes I panic. Sometimes I laugh before I can get the words out. Oh, who am I kidding? I can’t get formulate a good zing whether I’m laughing or not. My zings usually happen in the car on the way home. I am at my most clever when I am by myself.
What’s worse, if, on the off chance I DO come up with a credible zing, one of two things will happen, guaranteed.
One: I will not be able to get the zing out because I am too excited about how this amazing retort is going to land and that I will instantly be crowned the funniest person in the room thus ruining the zing by stumbling over my own over-excited words.
Two: I actually get to deliver my zing. Oh joy. It lands beautifully. I get the response I hoped to get. Everyone is remarking on how clever I am, but then it happens. I repeat the zing. I. Repeat. The. Zing.
The first and only mark of an amateur. Even as I am repeating I am telling myself to stop to just let it lay and step away. I should just bask in the enjoyment of being smarter than everyone else for that moment in time. No. I ruin it, not only by repeating the actual zing, but by also poking everyone around me and asking, “See what I did there? See? God, I’m funny. Did you see that? I just thought of that, did you realize that?” And so goes more inane prattling which again, leads to boring my audience into submission and then sleep.
My husband, Paul is also a master zinger. He’s so good at it that people are really careful to not say too much around him for fear of giving him the slightest ammunition. He has coached me countless times on the art of delivering the zing and as such, has deemed me unteachable in this area.
He believes (and he has said this with love), I may just be a tad high strung to pull off the cool, this-is-just-off-the-top of my head, kind of remarks. I was slightly offended at first, but then I realized, hey, I can’t be great at everything. I have to have some intellectual flaws so that it highlights how great I am in other areas. Right? Am I right?
Yeah, that’s it, great in other areas.