This post is about Irony, It is unironic which in itself is quite ironic considering the title of the post. It is as if Iron man had gone to the Iron factory to fix his suit only to find out that his suit was not made of Iron at all. but in fact made of steel. Causing him either to be a liar or to be ironic(which would be ironic in itself as his suit is made of steel)
I feel that in recent times irony is a skill we are slowly losing as a society. It still maintains its original meaning and yet it seems that it is not taught at all and is simply picked up. It is a pragmatic, which in its simplest terms is a hidden or implied meaning. But many people do not understand the hidden meanings and skip straight past it without a second thought like a mother carelessly letting her 2 year old play near the pan of boiling liquid precariously balanced on the edge of a stove.
Irony is often confused with coincidences such as Lincoln being assassinated in Ford’s theatre and Kennedy being assassinated in a Ford Lincoln. This is sheer coincidence and yet is falsely mistaken for irony. A good example of Irony is a TV Psychic show being cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances.
The reason I want to go over this is because I had a very fun time earlier when I got home and was confronted by my sister looking annoyed and upset, I asked her why and she said that she had bought 10 clear boxes to store her stuff in before realizing that they were too big an she couldn’t fit them under her bed. This meant she couldn’t use them and had put them stacked up in the corner of her room adding to the mess already there. I laughed but was unsure whether it was irony, stupidity or just a catch 22. I asked people online and was informed that it was just stupidity rather than Irony and this got me thinking. How much of what we think is Irony straight away, turns out not to be?
While I was looking up some examples I found a good phrase that I think fits very well. “Blood is thicker than water.” Its current meaning in today’s society is that Family (blood) is more significant and important than Friends (water) as you can always rely on your family to be there and support you but your friends can abandon you and stop caring any time they want. I am in opposition to this phrase as I think that you get to pick your friends and that you always have other people to rely on if you are born into a really crap family. I was relieved to see that the original phrase was “The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb.” Which means that the blood I have shared with another (in a literal sense such as a blood pact or soldiers fighting together) is far more important than the fact that I was born completely coincidentally into a family who you cannot choose? This phrase is now completely ironic as the two meanings directly juxtapose each other. There are other examples but I will leave those up to you to find.
So what do I think needs to be done? I think that teaching irony may seem a little bit pointless, but it’s more important than we think it is and it’s an underused language device that I feel brings a variety to pieces of writing that we currently lack. Like sarcasm it is a mainly British trait and comedians around the world recognize its significance in British humor and how it puts us apart from others.
Ed Burns Stand up about Alanis Morissette’s song Ironic