Ordinary

“The main goal in my life is to make extraordinary things out of the ordinary.”

~Vittorio Grigolo~


I was at a women’s conference at my church this past Saturday. The main speaker, who lives in Myanmar, related a story about how something very ordinary to us became very extraordinary to her young son. It seems that upon visiting grandma and grandpa in the United States for the first time, a red spatula came out of the drawer and the young boy’s eyes lit up in amazement. The spatula was immediately confiscated and the speaker’s son ran about the house, holding the kitchen utensil, arm extended in front of him as if “hailing Caesar.” In Myanmar, the son had not seen a spatula before, let alone a red one, so this ordinary object truly became something awesomely wonderful.

How often do we pick up a spatula, a glass of water, a #2 pencil, a cotton towel, a roll of toilet paper, or a needle and thread and consider it ordinary or don’t really pay attention to the intelligence of its creation or how fortunate we are to have it in our possession?

What “ordinary” item is near you at this moment? Can you describe it in an extraordinary way?


This post has been brought to you by an extraordinary red spatula. It has also been brought to you by Linda G. Hill’s “One-Liner Wednesday.” All you need to play along every week is an awesome one-liner and follow a few rules. Birds on a wire are not required, but make sure you link back today’s post to HERE so the rest of us #1linerweds peeps can read it.

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29 responses to Ordinary

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I hear you Judy. That first cup of hot, steamy, yummy beverage is like a comfort food. How would we get through the day without it?

  1. Dan Antion says:

    You raise a good question, Mary. We are so fortunate, and we so often forget the people around the world, and the people in this country, who are not as fortunate.

    I’m working from home, so that I don’t have to travel in a snow storm. I am working with a colleague in England on a project that resides on a virtual computer in our office. I don’t give a second thought to that arrangement.

    And, as Judy mentioned, I have a nice cup of coffee at my side.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Yay for the ordinary cup of coffee! I was amazed by the stories and photos this woman shared about her family’s life in Myanmar. She wants to practice medicine and be a missionary in that country, but the ruling government doesn’t take kindly to either. So, she tries to live an “ordinary” life for the moment.

      It must add some fun to your day to be in conversation and work with someone in England via a virtual computer.

      • Dan Antion says:

        I just wish we could find a way to put stuff like these conditions behind us. Instead, we look for ways to exploit them.

        It is amazing to be working this way.

  2. Joanne Sisco says:

    This story touched me Mary. We are surrounded by extraordinary if we just choose to see it and your post is a great reminder of that. Those who spend time with small children get to experience that wonder everyday 🙂

    • bikerchick57 says:

      So true of spending time with the little ones. Their view of the world is always magical and they find uniqueness in everything. I remember building great forts out of cardboard boxes and blankets when I was young and thinking how cool it was to be in that place.

      • Joanne Sisco says:

        omg yes! I remember watching our youngest son playing outside one day. He had a playroom FULL of toys, but what had him occupied for the LONGEST time was a piece of string and a rubber ball. He tied the string around the ball and pretended he was fishing off the side of the deck … casting that ball out over and over again.
        Such is the magic of children 💕

  3. marianallen says:

    There’s a ball-point pen next to me, and a pad of paper. A pen is a tube filled with dark liquid. A spring and catch device enables me to push the tip of the tube out of its protective cylinder. Pressing the tip of the tube against a surface makes the dark liquid come out a little at a time and make marks on the paper! Paper is a blend of powdered trees, chemicals, and water, spread very thinly and evenly and let dry. The sheets are cut into uniform pieces. The sheets are smooth, but are just rough enough that rubbing some things against them makes marks. They’re just absorbent enough that liquid soaks into them, but not always through them, and if the liquid is thick enough, the absorbed liquid doesn’t spread. Because of these properties, I can use my pen to write words on my paper. Other people can read the words I write and receive a message from me, no matter how far apart we are in time and space. If that isn’t extraordinary, I don’t know what is!

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Excellent Marian! You described something that most of us take for granted, especially in this computer age when personal notes are Facebook messages. Just like a hard-cover book, there is nothing quite like ink on paper.

  4. I am trying to find something sitting here at my desk, writing to you, but keep getting interrupted by one, two, then the third CAT…all wanting lap time! It dawned on me that cats are ordinary but who in the world first realized what magnificent, snooty, affectionate and sometimes psychic companions they could become???

    Extraordinary!!!

    • bikerchick57 says:

      And here I am, writing back to you, with a magnificent cat laying on my arm. He brings a lot of extraordinary to my life. 😼

      • M-R says:

        It’s here I must interpolate my own response, M-J: not putting down the Queen, both Gibbs and Lui are examples of what transMOGrifies something ordinary – what makes lives special – what renders beautiful the ordinary hours of a day …

      • bikerchick57 says:

        I agree M-R and the Queen does not take offense. She’s too busy sleeping her life away. 😉

  5. I love those perspective reminders of just how lucky we are.

    My house is in chaos so there are too many ordinary things lying near me to choose one. I’m abundantly blessed. I went to the hardware store and bought a packet of nails the other day. After spending an afternoon straightening used nails to be reused in building the new school building in Nepal, I never take a packet of brand new nails for granted.

    I love a good spatula.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      The nail story is great perspective, H. I think the next time I open my toolbox for a nail or hammer or screwdriver, I’ll think of this and count my so-called ordinary blessings.

      I love kitchen utensils of any kind. I have to stay out of that part of the store so I don’t buy magic avocado slicers and the like.

      • Er, yes. In my utensils drawer is a strawberry huller (actually one of my favourite gadgets) and an ice-cream cylinder thingy (Lets you put a cylinder of ice-cream on something instead of a boring scoop. I’ve used it twice in 8 years.) I’m a sucker for a gadget.

  6. dweezer19 says:

    My corduroy covered throw pillow is in my lap, worn in real well for my tablet to sit on like a desk. Later it may go behind my back or inder my head. Either way it is pretty useful and extraordinarily important in my day to day life. Oh and I love kitchen gadgets. 😉

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Pillows are a much needed item no matter where you go. I’m glad you have one that serves a purpose and acts as something comfortably extraordinary. I bought a long pillow many years ago, but almost didn’t because of the price. I’m so glad I did because it has served so many purposes, like supporting my back on the couch or keeping kitty Ziva off my bed pillow.

  7. joey says:

    I LOVE this post. It’s so perceptive.
    Two kitchen-y related thoughts: One, a visiting tween at my house once commented on how my ice trays were really neat. She had no idea that ice trays are a thing for people who live without an ice maker, or in our case, with a broken one.
    Two, upon leaving home, my parents gave me all the old kitchen utensils. Many of them are still with me. The pasta stirrer, though, was long ago half melted by helping hands. Last month, I bought a stainless steel one. I reckon it will last me the rest of my life. My ordinary is now fancy, and don’t you know, I think of it every time I see it 🙂
    Taking things for granted is part of the human condition.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      That’s funny about the ice cube tray because it’s all I’ve ever had. No fancy ice-making refrigerators in my life unless you count the new one at work. I know, lame, but I don’t put ice in my drinks unless they are of the adult refreshment kind. Enjoy your fancy pasta stirrer, which I bet will help make an awesome spaghetti dinner.

  8. Shelley says:

    Fun post-Mary! I have Copper (my little dog) sitting right next to me, even if you and I know you’re a more of a cat lover than dogs, he’s small and cute and cuddly, too. He’s a mixed breed (ordinary), with an extraordinary love for outside adventures.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Mixed breeds are the best, even in cats. I’ve never owned a pure-bred cat but every one of them has had an extraordinary personality trait. I imagine you can say the same for Copper.

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  1. […] before that post, my friend Mary, wrote a post for Linda’s One-Liner Wednesday prompt titled “Ordinary.” The post was anything but. It was interesting, and as I read it the seeds of this post started […]