1. Guest says

    There’s only one thing I would change in this new version of this song: “It’s meeting the man of my dreams. And then meeting his beautiful husband.”

  2. Anastasia Beaverhousen says

    The song is ironic because the lyrics are NOT ironic. I don’t know if Alanis did that intentionally but that’s the explanation I’ve stood by for a long time.

  3. Eric says

    Alanis actually did change the words to “meeting his beautiful husband” in the acoustic version of her Jagged Little Pill album. It was awesome.

  4. Macguffin54 says

    It’s always puzzled me, the backlash to this song, with everyone saying the lyrics are not ironic. Merriam-Webster defines irony, in one of three of its definitions, as incongruity between the actual result of a sequence of events and the normal or expected result. Is that not what she presents in the song?

  5. Kenn says

    Why are you guys consistently late to the party. This video is so last week, where it was EVERYWHERE.

    Good grief I can hardly wait to hear about the sex of the future monarch of England is when you get around to it this coming Friday.

  6. db says

    It’s weird that people are still going on about this song after 20 years. It’s not like no one noticed that the examples weren’t really “ironic” when it came out.

  7. Robert says

    I agree – MANY of these things fall under the definition of ironic. If you need a fork and you stumble upon 10,000 spoons? That is TEXTBOOK irony.

  8. Rrhain says

    @MACGUFFIN54: No. What Morissette describes are simply let-downs. The expected outcome for a wedding day is not sunshine. After all, nothing about a wedding day can affect the weather. Therefore, having it rain on your wedding day is not ironic…it’s just sad.

    Irony requires deliberate action. You need to try to do something and have those actions result in the opposite of what it is you were trying to achieve. It can be comic or tragic, but it must involve action and consequence.

  9. says

    Honestly the old song was ironic in the way it wasn’t because the definition of irony is pretty loose, ironic since everyone who cares about the definition is an word-that-gets-your-comment-pulled.

  10. anon says

    Irony requires the direct opposite of the expected outcome, like the firehouse burning down or the cobbler’s kids having no shoes. Irony can be related to tragedy (see above), but positive outcomes are still allowed. It’s hard to compose situations.

    I think people have secretly been waiting for this correction for a long time to get past the frustration of being force-fed an ineptly written hit song.

  11. Ted Pikul says

    @RRHAIN: Of course you didn’t provide a cite to back up your argument; that’s just your own peculiarly rigid definition of irony. MacGuffin54’s definition is consistent with the meaning of irony that my classmates and I studied in high school and college English courses (in addition to the definition in Webster’s and countless dictionaries of literary terminology).

  12. Rrhain says

    @TED PIKUL: Argumentum ad dictionary? Please. This is not an obscure word. It has a well-defined meaning. “Irony” is not simply “not what I wanted” or, as so often seems to be the case in the media these days, self-awareness mixed with snark (the idea that you can wear a t-shirt “ironically” is laughable.)

    I notice you don’t seem to provide any “cite to back up your argument” so my incentive to do your homework for you is not exactly hight, but since you seem to require it:

    i·ro·ny [ahy-ruh-nee, ahy-er-]
    noun, plural i·ro·nies.
    1. the use of words to convey a meaning that is the opposite of its literal meaning: the irony of her reply, “How nice!” when I said I had to work all weekend.

    2. Literature.
    a. a technique of indicating, as through character or plot development, an intention or attitude opposite to that which is actually or ostensibly stated.
    b. (especially in contemporary writing) a manner of organizing a work so as to give full expression to contradictory or complementary impulses, attitudes, etc., especially as a means of indicating detachment from a subject, theme, or emotion.
    3. Socratic irony.
    4. dramatic irony.
    5. an outcome of events contrary to what was, or might have been, expected.

    Yes, MACGUFFIN54’s definition is correct, but the examples given in the song are not consistent with that definition.

    The weather has no idea that you’re getting married. Therefore, rain on your wedding day isn’t ironic. And even this song gets it wrong: Choosing a place and time for the unlikelihood of rain does not make it ironic when it rains because that act of choosing that place and time has no effect on whether or not it will rain. Tragic, yes, since you didn’t want it to rain, but not ironic. If we want to use a Greek word to describe it, it would be “hubris,” the idea that you can control things beyond your abilities like whether or not it will rain.

    Irony is not mere juxtaposition of desired outcome X and actual outcome Y. It requires deliberate actions attempting to achieve X that, because of those actions, lead to the result of Y.

    If irony were as what you are positing, then any failure to achieve a desired goal is “ironic.” Applied for a job but didn’t get it? How “ironic.” Wanted to go see a movie but it was sold out? How “ironic.” Stubbed your toe on the corner of the bed? How “ironic.”

    Now, that doesn’t mean these situations can’t become ironic, but more is required. Suppose I was deliberately trying to avoid stubbing my toe on the end table and in the process, became so focused on avoiding the end table that I neglected to pay attention to the bed and thus stubbed my toe on the bed: *That* is ironic.

  13. Tod says


    According to dictionary definition, the events in the song can be called ironic. There is NO reason that the weather has have an idea you’re getting married in order for fulfill that.


    Happening in the opposite way to what is expected, thus typically causing wry amusement.”

  14. Joseph says

    I always assumed what Alanis was describing was not ironic but coincidences: for example, a guy afraid to fly dying in a plane crash isn’t ironic but a coincidence, right? Or just bad luck.

  15. Rrhain says

    @TOD: No, they can’t. Because you can’t control the weather, it raining on a day in which you hoped it wouldn’t rain can’t be ironic because you had no input into the system. You can always expect it might rain because we all know it might rain. It might be highly unlikely, but there’s always the possibility that it might rain.

    Your own definition tells you the word you really want to use: Wry.

  16. Rrhain says

    @TOD: Argumentum ad dictionary? Please. I gave a dictionary definition, too, and it says nothing like what you put forward.

    You’re right, it doesn’t say “controlling the outcome,” but that’s because the dictionary assumes you aren’t stupid. “Expected,” remember?

    Who “expects” the weather to be what you want it to be? Oh, you can plan and hope, but we all the weather is going to do whatever it is that we want it to be.

    The reason we talk about the “expected” outcome is because of the idea that we have some control over it: “If I do X, then Y will be the result.”

    Are you really that naive?

  17. Rrhain says

    Gads, that sentence was garbled. Trying again:

    Who “expects” the weather to be what you want it to be? Oh, you can plan and hope, but we all know the weather is going to do whatever it wants to do.

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