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Jokes > Tom Swifties
"The Random House Dictionary of the English Language", 1st edition (1966) defines a "Tom Swifty" as:
Tom Swiftie, a play on words that follows an unvarying pattern and relies for its humor on a punning relationship between the way an adverb describes a speaker and at the same time refers significantly to the import of the speaker's statement, as in "I know who turned off the lights," Tom hinted darkly. [named after a narrative mannerism characteristic of the Tom Swift American series of adventure novels for boys]

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  • "Boy, these blintzes are good!" said Tom judiciously.

  • " I'm an ordained minister," said Tom reverently.

  • "   ," said Tom blankly.

  • " ..., and you lose a few," said Tom winsomely.

  • "I've struck oil," Tom said, crudely.

  • "A thousand thanks, Monsieur," said Tom mercifully.

  • "Add this list of n numbers and divide the sum by n," said Tom meanly.

  • "As soon as the rain stops, we'll break camp," said Tom intently.

  • "Boy, that sure took the wind out of my sails!" said Tom disgustedly.

  • "Boy, will I give YOU a haircut!" said Tom barbarously.

  • "Buy me something to drink?" said Tom dryly.

  • "Get away from the dynamite," Tom said explosively.

  • "Give me some more macaroni and cheese, and I'll tell you," said Tom  craftily.

  • "I'd love some Chinese food," said Tom wantonly.

  • "I brought the dessert," said Tom piously.

  • "I collect fairy tales," said Tom grimly.

  • "I commanded a group of ships for a week," Tom said fleetingly.

  • "As my sole heir, you get it all," said Tom willfully.

  • "I forgot what to buy," Tom said listlessly.

  • "I hate pies with crumb bases," said Tom crustily.

  • "I joined the Lion's Club," said Tom pride fully.

  • "I just returned from Japan," Tom said disoriented.

  • "I know all the wherefores," said Tom wisely.

  • "I MUST patch this coat." Tom said raggedly.

  • "I need a home run hitter," Tom said ruthlessly.

  • "I need a pencil sharpener," said Tom bluntly.

  • "I only get Newsweek," said Tom timelessly.

  • "I punched him in the stomach three times," said Tom triumphantly.

  • "I still haven't struck oil," said Tom boringly.

  • "I think I'll use a different font," said Tom boldly.

  • "I want to date around," said Tom unsteadily.

  • "I was adopted," said Tom transparently.

  • "I was removed from office," said Tom disappointedly.

  • "I won the daily double," Tom cried hoarsely.

  • "I don't like hot dogs," Tom said frankly.

  • "I'll pay off that customs official," said Tom dutifully.

  • "I'll try and dig it up for you," Tom said gravely.

  • "I'm back from my lobotomy," said Tom absentmindedly.

  • "I'm knitting a sweater for my guppy," said Tom wolfishly.

  • "I've lost my trousers," Tom said expansively.

  • "I've made a study of girls," said Tom lassitudinously.

  • "It's the maid's night off," said Tom helplessly.

  • "Keep an eye on that orbit," Tom said watchfully.

  • "Let's get married," said Tom engagingly.

  • "Let's visit tombs," said Tom cryptically.

  • "Look at those newborn kittens," said Tom literally.

  • "Mush!" Tom said huskily.

  • "My pencil is dull," said Tom pointlessly.

  • "My stereo is broken," said Tom disconsolately.

  • "My stereo's half-fixed," said Tom monotonously.

  • "My stereo is working great now," said Tom ecstatically.

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    Last Updated April 1, 2013

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