5 Sentences You Never Have to Finish

#2. The "Would You Like ... (My Seat)?"

Here's another that works well on subways, but really it's a keeper in any situation with more people than seats. These days I don't offer my seat to young women. Why? Because I'm a feminist, that's why! But I do offer my seat to moms with little kids who need to sit on their lap, or the handicapped, or pregnant women, or really old people. I think that's as it should be, but let's not argue. That's not the point. The point is how you do it. Sure, I could do it with a full sentence that's easily comprehensible. But I don't. I don't know why, but I never say, "Excuse me, but would you like my seat?" or "Would you care to sit here?"

Instead I do this fun thing where I start the sentence and then just point. Typically it's to the seat, but sometimes I'll assume a very cool half-crouched position with raised eyebrows while seemingly pointing backward to that seat. Now, just because it might look like I'm suggesting that an old lady engage in oral sex with me is no reason to doubt the validity of this technique.

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"Are you asking me to stand or kneel?"

#1. The "So" Rejection

Do you ever want to say no to someone, but you're weak-willed or manipulative or just trying to be polite? If so, then the "so" rejection is a great sentence fragment for you! Let's say someone invites you to do something you don't want to do. You could say "That's a terrible idea" or "Get away from me, freak" or just "No." But then you'd have to face the consequences of your feelings.

Why not try the "so" rejection? Here's how:

"Hey, Gladstone, want to talk to me about music?"

"I'd love to, but I'm just about to alphabetize my underwear by color, so ..."

Actually, that was a bad example, because that's pretty clear I'm being a dick. Let's try it again:

"I'd love to, but I promised my cousin I'd go to the hospital to donate lifesaving blood for her medical procedure, so ..."

There ya go. Nailed it. I just seem like a nice guy with previous plans instead of an antisocial d-bag, and all because I decided not to a say a few words.


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