Alanis Morissette: Ironic | ESL Video

Alanis Morissette: Ironic

Quiz by: Sharon Michiko Yoneda    

Description: "And life has a funny, funny way of helping you out...helping you out."
High Intermediate
Play Video: Keynote (Google I/O '18)
An old man ___________.
___________ and died the next day.
____________ in your Chardonnay.
It's a death row pardon ___________
CHORUS: Isn't it ironic, don't you think? It's like rain on your wedding day. It's a free ride when you've already paid. It's good advice that you just didn't take. And who would have thought....it figures.
Mr. Play-it-Safe was afraid ________.
He packed his suitcase and kissed __________
He waited his whole damned life _________________.
And ____________, "well isn't this nice".
CHORUS: And isn't it ironic, don't you think? It's like rain on your wedding day. A free ride when you've already paid. Good advice that you just didn't take. And who would have thought....it figures.
Well, life has a funny way of _________
When you think everything is okay, and ____________________
And life has __________________________
You think everything has gone wrong and ___________ in your face.
______________ when you're already late.
__________ on your cigarette break
It's like ten thousand spoons when ___________________
____________ the man of my dreams.
And then meeting _______________.
CHORUS: Isn't it ironic....don't you think? A little too ironic....and yeah I really do think.....it's like rain on your wedding day, a free ride when you've already paid, it's the good advice that you just didn't take, who would have thought...it figures.
And life has a funny way of sneaking up on you. And life has a funny, funny way of helping you out...helping you out.
Ironic

An old man turned 98
He won the lottery and died the next day
It's a black fly in your Chardonnay
It's a death row pardon two minutes too late

CHORUS: Isn't it ironic, don't you think?
It's like rain on your wedding day
It's a free ride when you've already paid
It's good advice that you just didn't take
And who would have thought....it figures

Mr. Play-it-Safe was afraid to fly
He packed his suitcase and kissed his kids goodbye
He waited his whole damned life to take that flight
And as the plane crashed down
He thought, "Well isn't this nice?"

CHORUS: And isn't it ironic, don't you think? It's like rain on your wedding day
A free ride when you've already paid
Good advice that you just didn't take
And who would have thought....it figures

Well, life has a funny way of sneaking up on you
When you think everything is okay
And everything is going right
And life has a funny way of helping you out when
You think everything has gone wrong and everything blows up in your face

It's a traffic jam when you're already late
A no-smoking sign on your cigarette break
It's like ten thousand spoons when all you need is a knife
It's meeting the man of my dreams and then meeting
his beautiful wife

Isn't it ironic....don't you think?
A little too ironic, and yeah I really do think It's like rain on your wedding day
A free ride when you've already paid
It's the good advice that you just didn't take Who would have thought...it figures

And life has a funny way of sneaking up on you And life has a funny, funny way of helping you out...helping you out














artist: Alanis Morisette
songwriter: Glen Ballard and Alanis Morisette
date released: 1995 by Alanis Morissette

Excellent interpretation from Dr. Google:

In a few words, this song is about the irony that our lives reflect sometimes. The two verses that best describe this song are the two last verses “life has a funny way of sneaking up on you […] life has a funny way of helping you out.” The term “life” repeated five times in this song, exhibits the strong relation that this song has with the expectations we have towards our lives. We constantly encounter situations were we expect certain things to happen, and unfortunately the opposite hit us: Irony of our Fate. It is like God amusing himself by playing and manipulating our lives.

The lyrics are basically examples of circumstances that one can encounter through his life. These examples are completed by some thoughtful ideas at the end of every couplet and especially in the bridge. For instance, when she mentions the sentence” who would’ve thought it figures “in the chorus.
This sentence shows clearly that these events were totally unexpected and unpredictable.

An important issue I would like to point at is that this song makes me think. It is in a way a philosophical song since it deals with life and what we expect from it. I love this song for its way of throwing life in our faces. It forces reconsideration of the old adage 'Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.' Indeed ,I would find it difficult to believe the old man did not wish for winning the lottery, the customer did not wish for a neat chardonnay, or that any woman does not wish to meet the man of their dreams.

All of these characters receive what they think they want, but aren't able to enjoy it. So this song might also aim to question if we really wish to have what we think we want. This issue certainly makes me think and that might be the real reason I like it so much. I love the rare songs that provoke thought. This song challenges me to question what I think and why I think the way I do, which is how I grow.

The term Ironic, mentioned five times in this song (when not implied!) is very important to define. There has been a debate over whether Morissette conveys the correct meaning of the word in this song. According to The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition, irony means: “Incongruity between what is expected and what actually occurs”. Actually, if we look at the examples she gives, and based on this official definition; we cannot state that all the examples mentioned in the song are ironic. She seems to have gotten ironic events mixed up with misfortune or bad luck. For example, the “free ride when you've already paid” or the “no-smoking sign on your cigarette break” are ironic events whereas the “old man who won the lottery and died the next day” and the “rain on your wedding day” are more considered as unfortunate events. Whether she was knowingly using the word in the incorrect sense or not, let's face it - the song just would no't have the same attractive effect if it had been called "Unlucky", would it?




In my opinion, this is a good song in many ways. It's got a story, good feeling and great music especially with the explosion of the word "rain" in every refrain in addition to the sarcastic emotion of the line "a little too ironic.”. it can be considered as an emotional release when heard, as well as a reflection of culture with the notion of “irony of our fate” and finally, it arises from personal taste: a contemporary pop/rock music style attractive to the new generation of teenagers.

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1.) What type of music do you usually listen to?
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Exploring the Irony in Alanis Morissette's Song 'Ironic'

Dive into the world of irony with Alanis Morissette's iconic song 'Ironic'. This ESL video quiz offers a unique opportunity for learners to explore the concept of irony through engaging lyrics and scenarios.

The song 'Ironic' presents various ironic situations that prompt reflection and discussion. It's a valuable resource for ESL students looking to enhance their vocabulary and grasp the nuances of the Past Simple tense.

This video is ideal for intermediate ESL learners interested in analyzing song lyrics and understanding cultural references. It can be used in classroom settings for vocabulary expansion and grammar practice.
Category

Songs

Grammar

Past Simple

Keywords

irony

song lyrics

ESL learners

Discussion Questions

1.) What type of music do you usually listen to?
2.) Are there any genres of music you don't like? If so, which ones and why?
3.) Who is your favorite artist or band, and why?

Vocabulary

ironic

pardon

spoons

knife

crashed

late