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It's so easy to do in a chat room. I just do this: click here.

I want to capture that same benign, eye rolling, gently mocking disdain - but I have to stick to small words.

An example of an actual circumstance (true story) after which I might want to use such a phrase or word is when he ever-so-patiently explained to me that "rocket surgery" was an incorrect use of idiom.

Perhaps a quote?

I realize that this question is at least borderline for the site. If you feel I've crossed that line please edit if you feel that the question is salvageable.

EDIT: He's 56. Perhaps an instantly recognizable (to an American of his age) quote from pop-culture? Kind of like the way I might say, "Laugh it up, Fuzzball" to someone my age (46) who is very much enjoying the fact he's winning a card game?

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marked as duplicate by tchrist, choster, aedia λ, Hellion, RegDwigнt Dec 10 '13 at 12:58

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That's something that encapsulates your whole personality. You naturally cannot use borrowed-wisdom in that department. (I expect a rejoinder any moment ;) –  Kris Dec 8 '13 at 8:16
    
@Kris He doesn't need to know it's borrowed! –  Jolenealaska Dec 8 '13 at 8:23
    
It would depend very much on how well I knew the target. There are some, mostly old colleagues, who I can call a 'pillock' with no offense taken whatever. But when speaking to a stranger it is an altogether different matter. –  WS2 Dec 8 '13 at 9:48
    
@WS2 This is a long-time acquaintance, almost friend. I say "almost" because he is sometimes such a pig-headed, sexist bigot that I can't stand to be around him - But then he tries so hard to be good that I end up tolerating him again, at least until next time. When I really am angry at him, I don't mince words - I let him have it. I don't need help with that, when I'm angry at him, he knows. I'm looking for something much more benign, especially for times like the "rocket surgery" correction, or when he assumes I can't screw in a light bulb because I'm a woman. –  Jolenealaska Dec 8 '13 at 10:01
    
Think crotchety old-fart. –  Jolenealaska Dec 8 '13 at 10:06

1 Answer 1

You could say that he's not the sharpest knife on the Christmas tree

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'sharpest knife in the drawer' and 'brightest bulb on the (Christmas) tree' (in case anyone is unfamiliar with those idioms.) –  Dodgie Dec 8 '13 at 20:16
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I wish I had thought of that after the "rocket surgery" conversation! If I give it while maybe he'll forget so I can set him up to do it again. I'd use "chandelier" though, he's actually heard me use that one. "You're not the sharpest knife in the chandelier, are you?" I like it :) That will be epic if setting it up actually works. Dual layered mockery! –  Jolenealaska Dec 8 '13 at 23:23
    
@Jolenealaska hah, good luck! –  Dodgie Dec 9 '13 at 0:42

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