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‘Best Way To Win An Argument’, short story by Manya Das, Apeejay School, Kharghar



Janet Johns was attending a party given in her father’s honour. The man next to her started talking to her. In between their conversation he mentioned, “Men at some time are masters of their fates”, He said that it was a quotation from the Bible. Janet knew that he was wrong. She knew it positively. There couldn’t be a slightest doubt about it. And so, to display her superiority, she appointed herself as an unsolicited and unwelcome committee member to correct him. The man stuck to his guns. What? From Shakespeare? Impossible! Absurd! That quotation was from the Bible. And he knew it.
To her right, her old friend, Alicia Rivers, was sitting. Mrs. Rivers had devoted years to the study of Shakespeare. She listened to their argument and said “Janet, you are wrong. The gentleman is right”. That night while returning home, Janet asked her “Alicia, you know that Shakespeare had given that quotation” “Yes, of course”, she replied, “But why spoil such a festive occasion with an argument? Why to prove a man that he is wrong? He didn’t ask for your opinion, so why argue with him?” Janet learned a lesson that day, she not only made the man feel uncomfortable but also put her friend in an embarrassing situation.
Ben Franklin used to say “If you argue and contradict, you may achieve a victory sometimes; but it will be an empty victory because you will never get your opponent’s good will.”
Therefore, the answer to a simple question, “What is the best way to win an argument?”, it is to avoid it.