Friday, May 08, 2009

The definition of irony

If you've got kids, you'll know how they love to ask questions. I'm quite proud of the fact that both my kids are avid readers, but that does mean they occasionally come across the odd word they don't know which usually results in the question "Dad, what does this word mean?".

Most of the time I'm able to deal with these, but the other night my youngest asked me one that had me flummoxed. What is "irony"?

Have you ever tried to explaining irony to a nine year old? It's tricky to say the least. Contrary to what Alanis Morrisette might think, it's not rain on your wedding day. I still haven't found a good way to explain it to a nine year old - but I do think I've found the perfect example of irony.

It's the fact that after a long, inexorable drift over many decades the Conservative Party under David Cameron is looking like it might finally achieve its goal of becoming a social liberal party in power - just as the rest of the country is starting to turn back to social conservatism.

Isn't that ironic?


powdergirl said...

I'm not clever enough to respond to your grown up definition of irony, but I've recently had to come up with a definition for my 11 year old.
"It's the thing you least expect, like when you look everywhere for your ipod, you give up and sit down, and get a jab in the ass from the ipod in your pocket"
Just stopped in from Blue Eyes place. : )

Stan said...

Thanks for popping in - and for the explanation of irony!