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Thread: Is This Irony?

  1. #1
    Ataylor is offline Newbie
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    Is This Irony?

    A high-end retailer known for selling expensive merchandise (such as Saks or Neiman & Marcus) has a a pair of $1,000 dollar jeans marked down to $300.

    And an online medium known for selling discounted items (such as eBay) is selling the same pair of jeans for practically retail prices.

    Is that ironic? Not real good with irony.

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    Ataylor is offline Newbie
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Help?

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    Raymott's Avatar
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
    A high-end retailer known for selling expensive merchandise (such as Saks or Neiman & Marcus) has a a pair of $1,000 dollar jeans marked down to $300.

    And an online medium known for selling discounted items (such as eBay) is selling the same pair of jeans for practically retail prices.

    Is that ironic? Not real good with irony.
    It's mildly ironic to me. It depends where you lay the emphasis.
    It's not ironic that Saks is having a sale. It's not really even ironic that someone is trying to sell the jeans on eBay at almost full price.
    It would be ironic if someone bought the jeans from eBay thinking they were getting bargain.
    That eBay can sell the jeans for more than the retailer is asking for them is ironic if you think of eBay as a discount outlet. But if you think of eBay as an auction where any person is free to try to rip off other people, then it isn't so ironic.
    Last edited by Raymott; 01-Aug-2009 at 05:33.

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    Ataylor is offline Newbie
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    It's not ironic that Saks is having a sale.
    Yes, this I know.

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    It's not really even ironic that someone is trying to sell the jeans on eBay at almost full price.
    This I also know. I found the irony in combining both. Would that be correct? Would this be an ironic scenario?

    • Saks is known for selling high-end merchandise for a very high price.
    • Ebay is known for selling identical merchandise for much cheaper.


    Now, Saks is selling their merchandise at eBay prices and eBay (a discount medium) is selling at Saks prices. The roles are reversed and thus one can conclude irony?

  5. #5
    dragn is offline Member
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Hi Ataylor,

    Maybe this will help give you a slightly better feeling for irony.

    If we say something is ironic, we usually mean that a situation turned out in a way that seems contrary to the way it should have turned out. That is, we basically feel that it shouldn't have happened that way--but it sure is amusing/shocking/etc. It may seem unfair; it may seem like a cruel twist of fate; it may make us laugh; it may make us cry; it may make us laugh and cry; it may make us believe that God has a warped sense of humor. The outcome is in stark, often amusing or perverse contrast to what we would normally expect to happen or believe should have happened.

    Here's one of my favorite examples of irony I have used in class before:

    A firefighter gets called out to a big fire. He and his fellow firefighters arrive on the scene and bravely charge into a burning house, and are successful in putting out the fire before it can seriously damage the family's home. The family is very grateful that their home has been spared, and they thank the firefighters for their courage and hard work. Later, the firefighter returns home, only to discover that his own house burned to the ground while he was gone.

    That's ironic. Now, this does not cover every subtle shade of meaning and nuance of irony, but it's a start.

    Now, Saks is selling their merchandise at eBay prices and eBay (a discount medium) is selling at Saks prices. The roles are reversed and thus one can conclude irony?
    I think you could say this is rather ironic. There's a sense that it just shouldn't be that way; there's a sense that things are twisted around in a way that seems opposite to the way you'd expect. It is somewhat amusing, depending on your point of view, of course.

    Hope this helps.

    Greg
    Last edited by dragn; 01-Aug-2009 at 07:42.

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    Ataylor is offline Newbie
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Quote Originally Posted by dragn View Post
    That is, we basically feel that it shouldn't have happened that way--but it sure is amusing/shocking/etc. It may seem unfair; it may seem like a cruel twist of fate; it may make us laugh; it may make us cry; it may make us laugh and cry; it may make us believe that God has a warped sense of humor.
    Thanks for your detailed reply and for the example, dragn. :) I would have to say that you summed up my feelings regarding the above scenario just perfectly. lol

    If I may ask, what are your thoughts on my second post above? Would you say that it is an ironic situation? Or can it not be looked at that way, for some reason?
    Last edited by Ataylor; 01-Aug-2009 at 08:17.

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    dragn is offline Member
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    If I may ask, what are your thoughts on my second post above? Would you say that it is an ironic situation? Or can it not be looked at that way, for some reason?
    I assume you're referring to this:

    I found the irony in combining both. Would that be correct? Would this be an ironic scenario?

    • Saks is known for selling high-end merchandise for a very high price.
    • Ebay is known for selling identical merchandise for much cheaper.
    Yes, I think there is certain amount of irony there.

    Keep in mind, however, that irony is often a lot like beauty: it's in the eye of the beholder. What may seem exquisitely ironic to one person may scarcely register with someone else. It might just pass them right by and have little effect on them. It really can depend on one's point of view. As a result, it's sometimes hard to simply state as a fact that something is ironic. It's a little like telling someone that the joke you just told them is funny...so they can start laughing now. If it makes you laugh, then it's funny.

    Greg

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    Soup's Avatar
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
    Would this be an ironic scenario?

    • Saks is known for selling high-end merchandise for a very high price.
    • Ebay is known for selling identical merchandise for much cheaper.


    Now, Saks is selling their merchandise at eBay prices and eBay (a discount medium) is selling at Saks prices. The roles are reversed and thus one can conclude irony?
    Yes, that's ironic. See also IRONY

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    Ataylor is offline Newbie
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Good to know I'm on track to understanding. I appreciate the help, guys. Thanks!

    And Soup, why is that cartoon ironic? I don't' get it.

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    Lady Hawk is offline Member
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    Re: Is This Irony?

    Might I add another perspective? It would be ironic if a person found a designer pair of jeans on e-bay for what seemed to be a great price only to find that the same pair of jeans was offered at a lower price than that of e-bay for a limited amount of time from a high end store.

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