Do you know that story, of the chess prodigy who made a wrong move? He said, "Yes, I made that move even though it was wrong. I made it not because it was the right move, but because it was the most beautiful." Good story!
I like people who can laugh at themselves, tell jokes, diffuse awkward pauses, and on and on.
One time a student complained about a grade.
"It's not fair."
I wrote back, "Oh brother! You know when it's rainy? And you see those baby strollers with the clear plastic tarps that accordion over the baby? And that baby hasn't done anything its whole dumb baby life? Has never uttered a coherent, intelligible sentence? And just drools and poops and makes its parents hate each other and grow apart more each night—which is every night—it keeps them up crying? And on this rainy day you, the adult, don't have an umbrella because it was nice out when you woke up and you didn't think to check the weather report because the niceness, specifically the not-a-cloud-in-the-skyness, just seemed so sure it would make a whole day of itself? That stupid baby gets to ride around on a rainy day in an awesome waterproof stroller. THAT'S not fair. Also, check your syllabus. All grades are final."
The student dropped the complaint.