zeugma in action!
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Wil Nusser went on a rampage and sent me these:
By the time we left the bar, I'd bought her story, as well as her three drinks. The kleptomaniac illusionist stole the show and my wallet.
and the rather unsettling: He drowned his sorrows and his cat, but the relief was only temporary; it was only a matter of time before it took a more sophisticated victim to quell his disturbances.
he goes on to hypothesize that cheesy detective novels might be a goldmine for amusing zeugma. I think cheesy romances might as well. Perhaps it's the too-self-conscious straining towards poetic imagery that makes some zeugma seem cheesy...?
Will wrote me back with a couple more, gleaned from other sources, the first of which I had originally left off the list because it's really almost too well known. See my comments above about cheese...
"You held your breath and the door for me" Alanis Morissette, of course.
This is the city of broken dreams (and windows). (from somewhere on the web...
and from Jeremy Lecompte:
It certainly wouldn't break anyone's heart or bank to give some time to charity.
Paul E. Collins writes: "[a] classic example is in Pope's Rape of the Lock, referring to Queen Anne:
Here thou, great Anna! whom three realms obey,
Dost sometimes counsel take - and sometimes tea.
They tell me it rhymed in Pope's era. : )
Fred Bauer sends in these three from the Flanders and Swan song "Have Some Madeira M'Dear":
He said as he hastened to put out the cat, the wine, his cigar, and the lamps... She lowered her standards by raising her glass, her courage, her eyes and his hopes. She made no reply, up her mind, and a dash for the door.
Jared Greenblat sends the following, attributed to Stephen Fry:
All my friends are getting Firsts and married.
Firsts are apparently like university honors, so you could roughly translate it to American thus: [All my friends are getting summa and married.]
This great one submitted by Kevin Flynn:
The farmers in the valley grew potatoes, peanuts, and bored.
Ben Heaton sends in this one morbidly similar to one below...
The bored suicide decided to kill time and himself.
These are the ones I originally got from various examples in dictionaries:
She opened the door and her heart to the orphan.
The addict kicked the habit and then the bucket.
to wage war and peace
He lost his coat and his temper.
e-mail me with other examples of zeugma in action!
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