Wednesday, 25 April 2007

Bitchy put-downs

Just a quick one today - and a request with it. Very cheeky.
I'm compiling a list of great bitchy remarks/put-downs for someone else's book - ie Denis Healey's " being savaged by a dead sheep" on Geoffrey Howe's attack on his budget, or "I mistook his silences for intelligence" - Bianca Jagger on Andy Warhol.

Just wondering if you've got a particular corker you would like to share with me? Please? The more crushing the better....



NoviceNovelist said...

Sorry Lucy no snappy putdowns from me today - brain has shut down and actually I blame you!!! I sat up to 12:30 last night to finish your book - couldn't go to sleep without knowing how it ended and I haven't done that in ages. I really, really loved it - poignant, pacy, funny and gripping. When is the next one due??

Lucy Diamond said...

Oh, cheers!! Thank you so much, I am extremely flattered and suddenly in a much better mood!
It's very nice of you to say all that, novicenovelist - and, of course, you are totally off the hook with the putdown thing - that is the perfect excuse and the only one I shall be accepting!
The next one's out next spring, I think - April or May, I'm not quite sure. But obviously I will keep you posted.
Thanks again.

liz fenwick said...

My mind went blank when you asked. Will mull away on it....and come back if I can remember :-)

Lucy Diamond said...

Thanks, Liz. I think I've frightened everyone else away with my request - it's very quiet round here today. Or are you lurkers just leafing through your books of quotations on my behalf??

Anonymous said...

I remembered one!

Lady to Groucho Marx: "Do you mind if I smoke?"
Groucho: "I don't care if you burn."

Lucy Diamond said...

Yay - perfect. Thank you very much! Anyone else?

Jan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lucy Diamond said...

Ouch! How mean. I'm surprised you forgave her so quickly.
Oh - just seen you deleted your comment. I hope it wasn't too painful a memory?

London Refugee said...


After we decamped to the wilds of small-town Yorkshire we put our eldest, then 6, into the local Infant School which had a Victorian reputation.

We were having a difficult time all round but particularly with the school, its unenlightened approach and especially the xenophobic Head, Mrs S, who was a cross between Thatcher and Scargill.

Towards the end of the 2nd term we had a final pow-wow with Mrs S. Things were not going well with Mrs S saying that we had not made an attempt to fit in etc etc.
I could see Mrs Refugee boiling and whilst feeling like intervening to calm the cat-fight I just let Mrs R go, "And you, Mrs S, are unprofessional!"

She grabbed a tissue, burst into tears and fled the room, muttering something about, 'never in my life'.

We left the room and the school immediately. (Mrs S retired the following year - a blessing for education)

FULL details of our 5 year scholastic turmoil at 3 different schools from next week on my blurg.

Lucy Diamond said...

Very brave, taking on a headteacher - especially one that was a cross between Thatcher and Scargill - the mind boggles!

Jen said...

I remember being suitably horrified when my brother told me how much he hated his boss:

"I wouldn't pee on him even if he were on fire. Unless I pissed petrol, that is".


Cally said...

Have you got this one?

Lady Astor: "Sir, if you were my husband, I would poison my drink."
Winston Churchill: "Madam, if you were my wife, I would drink it."

Cally said...

Or Dorothy Parker (there are loads of good ones attributed to her if you google)

I particularly like this one:

Clare Boothe Luce - (inviting Dorothy Parker to enter a room first) Age before beauty.
Dorothy Parker - (accepting the invitation) Pearls before swine.

Lucy Diamond said...

Jen - ouch indeed. What a horrible image that conjures up!

Cally - those are both perfect. Thank you very much!

Jane Henry said...

Winston Churchill again - to someone can't remember who...

She: Mr Churchill you're drunk.

He: Mrs x you are ugly. But in the morning I shall be sober.

(That might be George Bernard Shaw actually. But it's very good)

Also on books - this is a true story. I went to a sales conference once and one of the reps held up a book and said, I took this into a bookshop and the bookseller said, It's a waste of a tree.

Waste of a tree became our catchphrase for all the books which failed....

love Janex

Jane Henry said...

It was Churchill - to Lady Astor again, I think...

Ok check this out, there's some fun stuff here!

Lucy Diamond said...

Waste of a tree...! Ooh, crushing! (great office catchphrase though)

Churchill really did come out with some corkers. Oh, and I've just seen the link. THANK YOU! I will check it out immediately.


Jane Henry said...

Lucy here's one i used, but you can't have it cos I've just put in my book.

I was very heavily pregnant with third child and out at pub with husband one New Year. I was sitting at a table and the bump was handily concealed, when I rather excitingly (it doesn't happen to me very often) got chatted up by this bloke who thought he was god's gift etc.

I let him hang himself on lengthy bits of rope and then I flashed my wedding ring at him and said,

"Married, two kids, another one on the way. You really don't want to know..."
I've never seen anyone jump so fast to the other side of the bar. It was deeply satisfying as I can never normally think of any put downs!

Lucy Diamond said...

You teaser! I love that - it's amazing how scary a pregnant woman can be!

Kate.Kingsley said...

My all time favourite:

The actress Margot Grahame to Jean Harlow: When Harlow and Grahame met for the first time, the barely literate Jean Harlow addressed the other actress as "Mar-got", pronouncing the final consonant. Grahame corrected her with a subtle snub: "The 'T' is silent, as in 'Harlow'."


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Lucy Diamond said...

Ouch - that is a corker!

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