Isn’t it ironic?

No, Alanis, it’s not. Rain on your wedding day is merely a bummer, as are traffic jams when you’re already late and no smoking signs on your cigarette breaks. This bane of English teachers everywhere at least served to spark conversations on the actual definition and use of irony, so it’s not a total loss. When I taught music in a public school in the East Bay I used to eat lunch with a couple of other teachers and we would discuss the true definition of irony, citing situations and events and determining, as a group, the degree to which they were truly ironic. We were never able to top one particular situation that occurred right on school property.

We had a set of very over-protective parents whose oldest child was in the first grade. The child was not allowed to walk alone from the entrance of the school to the classroom. On field trip days, one of the parents had to take off work and drive because they wouldn’t allow their child to ride in the car with anyone else. One such field trip day happened to fall during our annual Safety Week emphasis. The dad was driving and as he entered the parking lot he ran over one of the teacher’s aides and broke her back. The overprotective dad. Who wouldn’t let his kid ride with anyone else. During Safety Week. See?

This evening has turned into one of the best ever because my dad has been diagnosed with heart disease. Hang on – it’s not that bad. He has a descending aortic aneurysm and the doc isn’t concerned because he’s in otherwise good health. It is hereditary though – thanks for that. The part from which I am deriving a HUGE amount of glee is the fact that his dr. has ordered him to drink a glass of wine every night. My parents are Mennonite. My mom grew up going to Women’s Christian Temperance Society rallies, of which her grandmother was a founder. I love them very much but they’re very judgy when it comes to alcohol. They don’t like the taste, they don’t see any reason to drink it, and for a while they took it as a parental failure that I do occasionally imbibe. Very occasionally, and I’ve never been drunk, which should be worth something, but it’s not. So, now, after all this time, and the lectures and the heated discussions about this, they’re asking me for recommendations on what to get. I realize this makes me a total adolescent but OMG – MY PARENTS ARE WRONG AND THEY’RE FINALLY ADMITTING IT. Should I be this excited? Probably not. Dad has been driven to the bottle by heart disease and Mom is, well, being SUPPORTIVE.

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