Answer :

Somerset Maugham’s “The Luncheon” unpacks itself with finely layered humour packed with polite sarcasm. The story begins with the narrator’s lady friend who happened to coax him out for a little luncheon at a highly expensive restaurant. The narrator was quite sure about ordering little food keeping in mind his budget for the month. However, irony unveils itself as soon as we learn that under the title of “little luncheon”, the lady kept on ordering exotic foods like salmon, asparagus, caviar and so on without paying any heed to the narrator’s financial capacity. At the end, when the lady instructs the narrator that he should follow her footsteps of serving himself with a “little luncheon”, the author sarcastically and quite humorously remarks that he would rather do better by not having anything for dinner that day. It is in retaliation to this statement that the lady said, “you are quite a humorist”.

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