Like everyone else who survived tenth-grade English, I had my problems with Alanis Morissette’s “Ironic” when it was all over the radio, most of them having to do with her obviously faulty understanding of what irony actually is. It is not raaaain on your wedding day, or a black fly in your chardonnay. It isn’t most of the things she mentions, but I gave her a pass on most of them, because she obviously wasn’t up to the task of filling her chorus with examples and making them rhyme.
However, the other day I saw an obituary in the Free Press that’s, like, a whole ‘nother verse.
Well-liked and nationally known ER doc dies in a car crash on I-75. Ejected from his vehicle. The irony:
Aranosian, who had trained many emergency physicians and emergency medical technicians, was not wearing a seat belt.
“He had a clip in it where he had defeated the seat belt alarm system,” Simon said. “Not wearing a seat belt was a contributing factor in the fatality.”
Oh, well. Dr. Frank has a pulmonologist colleague who’s a secret smoker. The impenetrable human heart.
alex said on December 30, 2003 at 3:08 am
Reminds me of when I worked near Northwestern Hospital. The sidewalk was constantly crowded with medical personnel in their garb huffing away like there was no tomorrow. As a smoker, I must say I found it mildly affirming, soothing. So take heart all you seatbelt cheaters�even an intelligent man like a physician evidently thinks the odds are in your favor.
Bob said on December 30, 2003 at 10:07 am
When my oncologist examined me, I could smell the cigarettes on his hands.
When I was hospitalized receiving intensive chemo and radiation for cancer, I often watched other cancer patients wearing only their hospital robes and slippers and with their IV stands in tow, shuffle down the hall, take the elevator to the first floor, and then stand outside and smoke. In January. In Chicago.
Lance Mannion said on December 30, 2003 at 4:45 pm
“There is a type of situation, which occurs all too often and which is occuring at this point in the story of the Baudelaire orphans, called ‘dramatic irony.’ Simply put, dramatic irony is when a person makes a harmless remark, and someone else who hears it knows something that makes the remark have a different, and usually unpleasant, meaning. For instance, if you were in a restaurant and said out loud, ‘I can’t wait to eat the veal marsala I ordered,’ and there were people around who knew that the veal marsala was poisoned and you would die as soon as you took a bite, your situation would be one of dramatic irony. Dramatic irony is a cruel occurence, one that is almost always upsetting, and I’m sorry to have it appear in this story, but Violet, Klaus, and Sunny have such unfortunate lives that it was only a matter of time before dramatic irony would rear its ugly head.
“As you and I listen to Uncle Monty tell the three Baudelaire orphans that no harm will ever come to them in the Reptile Room, we should be experiencing the stange feeling that accompanies the arrival of dramatic irony. This feeling is not unlike the sinking feeling in one’s stomach when one is in an elevator that suddenly goes down, or when you are snug in bed and your closet door suddenly creaks open to reveal the person who has been hiding there. For no matter how safe and happy the three chlidren felt, no matter how comforting Uncle Monty’s words were, you and I know that soon Uncle Monty will be dead and the Baudelaires will be miserable once again.”
The Reptile Room