Archive for September, 2013

I admit it.  I think of myself as normal.  I think that’s pretty normal, isn’t it?  But I am constantly proved wrong, of course, because no one is normal.

I mean, there are *some* things I do that I know aren’t normal, like spinning my own yarn.  But then there are normal things I know I don’t do, like knitting.  And then there’s my friend who is herself about as far from normal as she can be, who loves to tell me how not-normal I am in the best possible way, and yet that’s partly because we’re alike in many ways (who needs a fork, we can eat the eggs and ground beef straight out of the skillet!)

Still, there are times when my perception of what normal should be runs head-long into reality.

Like, it’s really bizarre to me that someone wouldn’t know where to go to buy cardamom.  I like to have not just a well-stocked spice cupboard, but I actually *use* the spices in my spice cupboard.  Regularly.  Not just daily, but meal-y!  Which I know makes me not normal, but only not normal compared to people who think spice means salt, which I hardly ever use, but makes me really normal compared to people who use herbs and spices in abundance.

It’s also really weird to run into people who think letting your pets lick your dishes before you wash them is gross.  Seriously, I’m still going to WASH them.  It’s not like you’re eating your next meal off cat-lick.  I promise, the hot water and soap that can kill raw meat germs will clean kitty spit.  And by the way, get that hand sanitizer away from me, gross.

Or finding out that for some people, 10 minutes is a really long drive and can’t I find any place closer to eat, because my brain immediately says “What on earth could be closer than 10 minutes away? How do you get anywhere!?”  Because for me, a trip to town is 45 minutes, one way.  Whereas they can walk three minutes and get almost everything they need.

And I still remember the time I went to buy a good dress shirt and the lady told me it was wrinkle-resistant fabric, or something like that; that you pull it out of the dryer and hang it up, no ironing needed. And I said, oh, well I use a clothes line.  And I got *that* look.  That look that the 20-something year old sales attendant gave which can only be described as somewhere between disbelief and condescension, as if who uses clothes lines THESE days, it’s 2010! (or was at the time.)

Or maybe I’m just being really unfair to the 20-something year old sales attendant who had likely never conceived that anyone who would be buying business casual dress shirts would consider putting them on a clothes line, because that isn’t exactly normal.

And for as much as I recognize (and am sometimes flat-out told) how not normal I am, my brain just insists on assuming that I am normal.  Because I am the only way I know how to be.  Being something else isn’t wrong, but it’s not something that generally comes to mind when I run into scenarios like the above.

Then there are other times when I experience a strange feeling of culture shock without ever leaving home.  Like realizing my friend in New York has no idea why I think having a good snow fall in the mountains in winter is good, because it helps prevent drought in the summer.  Or having someone from California up who is boggled that we have a store dedicated solely to selling potatoes.  (In season, of course.)

And I realize everyone thinks they’re pretty normal.  Which I guess makes me normal.  Except I’m not.  Because no one is.  We’re all normal in that we’re all different, and we’re all different in so many beautiful ways, that I’m glad there isn’t any such thing as normal, cause life would be really freakin’ boring if there was.

I really like not being normal, and I wouldn’t want to be.  But sometimes I still forget and think I am.

Which means normal is only how I am compared with how I think I am.  If I do something I find not normal, it’s only not normal compared to myself, not compared to anyone else.  And when I do things that are normal, it’s only my own normal, and no one else’s normal.

I just have to remember that everyone is just as normal as I am, as everyone is pretty much the only way they know how to be.  Which means everyone is their own normal, and everyone else isn’t.

Which I guess means I am normal.

Just a different same normal as everybody else.


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