Thursday, December 10, 2009

Yo-Ho-Ho And A Bottle of Irony!

A famous writer I know once told me a story about another, even more famous writer she had gone to visit. When she arrived, the more famous writer was sitting in a chair looking out the window towards the gray Canadian mountains and said, "Irony.  It's all we have left."
I couldn't agree more. Then again, it was Canada.

Some critics have even said that irony has been the death of American literature. I'm sure Faulkner and Steinbeck would agree, Sedaris and Heller would not. Clearly, it's not for everyone. Still, there are people walking around in the world who just don't understand it. Or as I like to call them, people without a sense of humor. They're out there hiding in the bushes.
Trust me.

I find this disbelief in irony hard to believe.  Which is ironic because I find most things in life hard to believe. How about life itself for instance. Can you believe we're all going to die at some random time and place completely unbeknownst to any of us? Yet here we are cleaning the toilet bowl, wrapping Christmas presents and throwing cocktail parties like we couldn't give a crap. And for the most part, we don't. Unless of course you're Woody Allen who writes entire films based on it. For the rest of us it's just the giant pink elephant in the room that we all step delicately around to get to the sausage tray and open bar. Ironic?
You bet, Susan.
So why all the fuss about irony? Well, it seems there are a few folks out there who think I should take my literary endeavors a little more seriously. Oh, I do. I'm very serious about using humor, sarcasm and irony in strange and wonderful new ways. I assume that most readers already know how bad things in life can get. I'll leave the seriousness of it all to the dramatists and Franz Kafka. In the meantime,  I'll be writing 'bad poetry' and short stories about silly things like how I helped Bob Dylan learn how to write songs. (the man couldn't rhyme to save his life) And if by some cosmic irony I get hit by a bus, the only thing I want to hear at my funeral is, "Look! She's moving!"

 "I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it by not dying." -Woody Allen

Photo: Kathlyn Horan

No comments:

Post a Comment