There is no such thing as ‘ordinary’
Ordinary people. The common man. Everyday folks. Many phrases describe what most of us are: that is, regular Joes, Josephinas and Joeys running around living our lives, carrying out our own personal stories every day.Our lives aren’t splashed across TV screens constantly, and international magazine writers aren’t interviewing us to get to know us just a little better. But that doesn’t mean the lives we lead are any less interesting, fulfilling, complex or emotionally charged than a famous celebrity who gets chased down the street by paparazzi.It seems, though, that for quite a big chunk of the population, being famous is akin to winning the lottery (another aspiration that can turn pretty dang sour if the loot isn’t managed well). Look at the whole reality-show craze, where people willingly lay out their lives in full view of the rest of the world. Or how about that “American Idol” show (which I have actually never sat through but have seen snippets of here and there). I think the premise is that both talented and talentless people compete against each other, often humiliating themselves as they’re being judged by a snarling British guy (Who is he, anyway?). The ultimate goal is to become the next big thing and become famous and adored.But just ask some well-known types how fabulous life is when your every move is watched and stalkers harass you so relentlessly that you fear for your life. No thanks. Sheryl Crow, Michael J. Fox, Madonna and David Lettermen are just a few of many who have been threatened by mentally ill stalkers. These celebs may have zillions of dollars, and everybody may know their names, but there’s a lot of downside to that, too. Like stepping outside your own house. Like going into town and walking around. Like meeting friends for dinner. Like doing anything. In the newspaper business, the pundits go on and on about the importance of telling the stories of “ordinary people.” They talk about the importance of writing about our neighbors. But for me, that’s an overstatement of the obvious. There’s no such thing as “ordinary.” We – real-life people – are part of the stories that happen around us every day, not the larger than life stuff we see on the big and little screens. Carrie Click is the editor of The Citizen Telegram in Rifle and the Western Garfield County bureau editor for the Post Independent. She is happy nobody gives a hoot about who she is and where she’s going. Carrie can be reached at 625-3245 ext. 101, email@example.com.
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