No, It’s NOT Ironic…

OK, so this is a pretty weak (not to mention short) rant, but here goes:

Am I the only American that’s just fed up with people that use the word “ironic” all the time without knowing what it really means? Irony is defined as:

[a]n intentional contradiction between what something appears to mean and what it really means. Irony is normally conveyed through contradictions between either what is said and what is meant or appearance and reality.

In casual usage, irony generally means “an outcome that is the opposite of what was intended or expected”. If someone spent their entire adult life working in a fire extinguisher factory and died when their house burned down (due to a lack of extinguisher)… that’s ironic. Someone’s house burning down on the day they make their last mortgage payment? Not ironic.

In other words, if porn star Ron Jeremy were to move to Virgin, North Carolina, that would be ironic, since Ron Jeremy is pretty much the opposite of a virgin. If, however, he moved to Infected Cock, North Carolina, that would not be ironic. It would be a coincidence (and a funny one at that)… but it wouldn’t be irony.

I guess my main rant here is that far too many people call something “ironic” when the proper word they should use is either coincidence” or sheer “bad luck”.

Speak the Queen’s English, people!

2 Replies to “No, It’s NOT Ironic…”

  1. You can have a blog dedicated how people muck up the English language. Actually, someone already did. It’s here: http://englishfail.wordpress.com.

    To see how the Chinese mangle English, there’s the always hilarious http://www.engrish.com.

    I have tons of pet peeves about how people, for whom English is their native language, can neither properly speak it nor write it. People who say “axe” instead of “ask”; those who think every word ending with an “s” must be preceeded by an apostrophe; those who don’t know the difference between “your” and “you’re”, “that” and “which”, “between” and “among” or among “too”, “two” and “to”… How do they get hired and how in the world do they manage to keep their jobs???

    Well, I could go on but I won’t. BTW, I found your blog, which I like, following a link to a utility promising to shrink my XP desktop icons. I read some good comments about it so I’ll give it a shot.

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