I know there is a large literature on wit, but while writing the previous post it struck me that we use the term to name two essential things: 1) Basic smarts, the ability to have your wits about you; 2) the ability to use language against itself in order to stand against conventional wisdom. So wit deflates pomposity, but if that is all it does it is mere wit; to be really effective, wit needs to be deployed with love, or at least sympathy. I was listening to Fountains of Wayne while writing the last post; now I'm listening to one of their grandfathers, Mose Alison. The sympathy in a Mose Alison tune doesn't come from the lyric -- "You mind is on vacation and your mouth is working overtime" -- but from the sweetness of the delivery, which tempers & transforms the acid of the words. And it is the very ability to have a distinct delivery in language -- a point of view, a way of seeing the world -- that enables wit by creating aesthetic distance.