A paraprosdokian (from Greek, meaning "beyond" and "expectation") is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected in a way that causes the reader or listener to reframe or reinterpret the first part. It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect, sometimes producing an anticlimax. For this reason, it is extremely popular among comedians and satirists.
Some paraprosdokians not only change the meaning of an early phrase, but also play on the double meaning of a particular word, creating a syllepsis.
I never make the same mistakes twice. I make it five or six times, just to be sure. - Unknown
I phoned my dad to tell him I had stopped smoking. He called me a quitter. - Steven Pearl
I picked up a hitchhiker. You gotta when you hit them. - Emo Phillips
I saved a girl from being attacked last night. I controlled myself. - Rodney Dangerfield
I saw a man at the beach screaming, “Help, shark, help! I laughed because I knew the shark wasn’t going to help him.
I started out with nothing and still have most of it left. - Unknown
I tried phone sex - it gave me an ear infection. - Richard Lewis
I used to think I am indecisive, but now I am not so sure. - Unknown
I was a vegetarian until I started leaning toward the sunlight. - Rita Rudner
I would jump in front of a train for you, as long as it’s not moving. - Unknown
My boyfriend and I broke up. He wanted to get married and I didn’t want him to. - Rita Rudner
I was born intelligent - education ruined me. - Unknown
I was going to change my shirt, but I changed my mind instead. - Alan Alexander
I was raised as an only child, which really annoyed my sister. - Will Marsh
I was trying to daydream, but my mind kept wandering. - Steven Wright
I went to a garage sale. “How much for the garage?” “It's not for sale.” - Steven Wright