Let’s take a look in this lesson at sarcasm irony and jokes.
Sarcasm is often described as the lowest form of wit because it is not funny to the person to whom it is said.
What one person might think is harmless, another might find hurtful.
A sarcasm can be taunting or teasing, praising or cutting, certainly mocking and derogatory.
Sarcasm is taken to mean the opposite of what is actually said and is a specific kind of irony.
The tone of how it is said will determine in the mind of the recipient whether it is well meant or intended to be sarcastic.
Here are a mixed-bag of expressions which could be intepreted as sarcasm, irony or as a joke.
Practice saying both the comment and the response with a different tone.
COMMENT Are you being sarcastic?
RESPONSE Only if you want me to be.
COMMENT How are you today?
RESPONSE I’m perfect, thank you. Can’t you see?
COMMENT Where are you from?
RESPONSE What a silly question. Planet Earth of course!
COMMENT And where do you live?
RESPONSE I live in a house. Don’t you?
COMMENT So what’s your address?
RESPONSE That’s none of your business.
COMMENT Anyway, thank you for seeing me today.
RESPONSE Well, why not? I’ve got nothing better to do.
COMMENT I’m sorry I stepped on your flowers earlier
RESPONSE So am I. Do you have a problem with your eyesight?
COMMENT No but I did fall down the stairs last night.
RESPONSE Golly gosh! Didn’t you hurt yourself?
COMMENT A bit. I’m sorry for being late. It couldn’t be helped.
RESPONSE Don’t worry. You’re in time for the next English lesson.
COMMENT Look at him over there with her
RESPONSE Yeah. They’re like chalk and cheese
COMMENT You look absolutely amazing in those clothes
RESPONSE Are you kidding me?
COMMENT Crikey, what’s what awful smell?
RESPONSE That’s the perfume I’m wearing. You like it?
COMMENT They tell me Rome wasn’t built in a day
RESPONSE Tell me something new
COMMENT I saw this graffiti on a wall. It said ‘Jesus Saves’
RESPONSE Yeah and so does Peter Schmeichel at Manchester United
COMMENT The earth is round, you know
RESPONSE What a genius! Another Einstein in our midst!
COMMENT What do you think about my story?
RESPONSE I wouldn’t give up the day job if I were you
COMMENT I think it will snow tonight
RESPONSE Did I ask for your opinion?
COMMENT I couldn’t work out the solution to the problem
RESPONSE Not the brightest spark around, are you?
COMMENT Would you like to go out with me?
RESPONSE Not even if you were the last person left on earth
COMMENT I have had plastic surgery done on my face. What do you think?
RESPONSE I would ask the doctor for a refund.
COMMENT I’m ambitious. I want to manage my own business
RESPONSE You couldn’t manage a pub crawl in a brewery
COMMENT Excuse me, is anybody sitting here?
RESPONSE Are you blind? You should see an optician
COMMENT I thought you said you loved me
RESPONSE In your wildest dreams, sweet pea.
COMMENT Hello darling, I’m back
RESPONSE I thought I had got rid of the rubbish last week.
COMMENT Do you love me?
RESPONSE Is that a rhetorical question?
COMMENT Have you got anything to say?
There are, of course, many more which could be written but these are just a sample to encourage your practice of speaking English.
Enjoy the lesson!