Antisagoge (an-tis-a-go’-gee): 1. Making a concession before making one’s point (=paromologia); 2. Using a hypothetical situation or a precept to illustrate antithetical alternative consequences, typically promises of reward and punishment.

Ok, ok. So I shouldn’t have tried to incinerate our neighbor’s dog. But, it dumps big steamers in our yard twice a day and has repeatedly dug up our garden boxes. Our neighbor, the dog’s owner, is a very large and very strong weight-lifting violent troll whose hobby is kick boxing with his nine-year-old son (who has a little trouble speaking and walks with a limp). In short, my neighbor scares the holy crap out of me. At least he didn’t catch me squirting lighter fluid on his dog “Dog,” a name suited for the pet of a giant nitwit bully. Right then, I heard him crunching up my gravel driveway. I had to hide behind the hedge until he left—but before he left, like the giant in Jack and the Beanstalk, he said “Fee fie foe dude, I smell the smell of lighter fluid.” I nearly peed my shorts, but I stayed quiet and didn’t do a panicked runner. He knew I was hiding somewhere nearby, but he left, dragging Dog behind hm.

Something still needs to be done about the dog.

I was willing to go to any length to whack the dog—to stop the yard bombs and the marathon barking sessions. What if I trapped him in a dog crate with a big piece of meat, kidnapped him, took him on a cruise on the Queen Mary 2 to England, and threw him overboard somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean? Elaborate, but brilliant.

The plan failed. My neighbor accompanied Dog on his daily bombing mission and saw me, the dog crate, and the meat inside it. He reached behind him and pulled out a pistol. He aimed it at me and slowly panned toward the dog crate and started firing. He emptied the gun and the dog crate was transformed into a lump of smoking plastic. He started reloading, and I heard police sirens. My neighbor was arrested for attempted murder—for attempting to murder me! Ha ha! He had successfully murdered the dog crate, but I didn’t have a scratch. At his trial, I testified that I was inside the dog crate when he arrived and was able to just barely get out of it when he started shooting. I told them I was lucky to be alive. My neighbor was convicted of attempted murder and is currently living out his 25 year sentence at Rahway State Prison. I adopted Dog and trained him to shut up and poop in the gutter when we take walks. I don’t mind bagging Dog’s poop.

Everything has worked out for the best for me, but not for my neighbor, and Dog has become a model multiple breed dog, enjoying peeing on the fake fire hydrant at the doggy play park, humping other dogs, and begging for doggy treats.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (

A paper version The Daily Trope is available from Amazon under the title The Book of Tropes.

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