It’s not that I don’t like irony. In fact, my favourite t-shirt proclaims the exact opposite (although it’s my favourite because it’s remarkably comfortable after all these years). And I defy you to name a more satisfying literary device than Dramatic Irony. You can’t. And you can still be as ironic as you wish. I, however, am formally retiring from irony in 2012.
In an effort to have a more sincere and authentic 2012, I’ll no longer be devoting any more energy to liking things ironically. Or “despite it’s flaws”. Or “for the genre”. If I like something, it will be unqualified. Is this because life’s too short for joy to be constrained? Because labels devalue what we hold dear? No. It’s because I like Queen, always have, and never with a trace of irony. And because I’ve spent too much time living by my own made up rules.
Queen being, of course, the band that wrote a rock anthem with the complexity of classical music, and wrote it about riding bikes. They also wrote the theme song to the remarkably silly Flash Gordon movie from 1980. And the bombastic theme song to The Highlander (because there could be only one). In general, Queen’s appeal has a lot to do with how earnestly and ambitiously they crafted songs with objectively ridiculous lyrics and subjects.
So logically, if I can love Queen without irony and without qualification, what can’t I love without irony? Savage Garden’s I Want You? Lady Gaga? Meat Loaf? That Justin Bieber song I secretly hum all the time? They’re all on the table. So is the Spider-Man cartoon from the 90’s and any and every Chris Farley movie.
Maybe life isn’t too short, and it’s actually too long. Maybe I’ll live past 100 years and be able to devote an entire decade to re-writing Dickens in Klingon. But I’m coming to realize that sincerity is in short supply, and as long as I’m on this planet, it’s not a bad idea to try and add a little more.
So that’s my 2012 resolution in a nutshell: live by the Queen Rule.