Ordinary Life

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Melina Cortazzo
English 102
M-W 1:30–2:45 pm.
April 30, 2011
Assignment: What is an Ordinary Life?
Word Count: 571

What is an Ordinary Life?

To examine what constitutes an ordinary life, one must first consider the meaning of the word ordinary. The Funk and Wagnall’s Standard College Dictionary defines ordinary as “of common or everyday occurrence”. That same dictionary defines life as “a form of existence”. Taking these words at their literal meaning would thusly define an ordinary life as common day to day existence. The question we must tackle now is what constitutes commonality? Is what is common to one person common to all people? I feel that the answer to this is, no. I believe that each individual has their own opinion of what is common place, and that their attitudes are based on their lives, and experiences. Factors like affluence, culture, and ability directly affect how one views what is considered to be ordinary. When reflecting on what is common to me versus what is common to others, I realize that what I find normal or ordinary is not the same as what my brother finds to be familiar, and the main reason for this may be socioeconomic. My brother, whom is much more affluent than I am, would find taking public transportation to be an out of the ordinary way to get somewhere. He has never had need to make use of public transportation. Because of this, he would feel out of place using Port Authority. I, on the other hand, had made use of public transportation for many a year. Although I now own and operate my own vehicle, I would not feel uncomfortable riding a bus to downtown. I have done it so many times previous that to me it has become commonplace. Another, yet more extreme way of looking at this could be to compare what a homeless person and a millionaire have in common. My educated hypothesis would be to say “not too much.” They, therefore would find entirely different things to be ordinary. Holiday celebrations are yet...
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