The Introvert's Corner

How to live a quiet life in a noisy world

Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions for Introverts

Comebacks to the clueless things people say to introverts.

As a kid, I was an avid reader of MAD magazine, which had a regular feature called Al Jaffee's Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions. (You can still find used copies of the books of the same name.)

The snappy answers were the responses you wished you could think of right away instead of two hours later, the clever retorts to dopey and/or clueless questions that would wither the questioner and provide certain smug (if unkind) satisfaction.

This feature came to mind as I was writing the post "How to Piss Off an Introvert" and so I decided to revisit the topic. I can't hope to be funny as the great Al Jaffee, who is the longest-running contributor to MAD. But I thought I'd take a shot at snappy answers some of the questions/comments that drive introverts bonkers. 

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Why are you so quiet?

  • I'm listening to the voices in my head.
  • Somebody has to be. (Thanks to reader sb22)
  • I'm studying to be a mime.

Smile!

  • Why?
  • I can't. Tragic Botox incident. 
  • I will when you go away.

Why are you always so serious?

  • I'm only serious on the outside. I'm partying on the inside. 
  • Always? Have you been stalking me?
  • Because the universe is expanding, and if it's expanding, someday it will break apart and that would be the end of everything! (Thanks Alvy Singer.)

Are you mad?

  • No, just eccentric.
  • Why, what have you done?
  • Not yet.

Do you hate people?

  • Not all people.
  • Only people who ask me that question.
  • No, they're delicious with a nice Chianti. (Thanks Hannibal Lecter.)

Are you a snob?

  • No, I'm a slob. That must have been a typo.
  • Of course not. I'm here, aren't I?
  • No, I pride myself on my low standards.

You look bored.

  • Don't be so hard on yourself.
  • This is my rapt face.
  • Only when you talk.

You don't know how to have fun.

  • Sure I do. Tell me when it starts.
  • I didn't know "fun" was a synonym for "loud."
  • You're right, I'm outta here.

Got some of your own? I'd love to hear them. Keep ‘em clean and not too mean, please. Let's make Al Jaffee proud.

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My book, The Introvert's Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World, is out and about, available for Kindle, Nook, and in the good ol' dead tree version.

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Sophia Dembling is a widely published Dallas, Texas-based writer. Her latest book is The Introvert’s Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World.

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