The Ordinary

I like the fact that the world is a very strange place, but I also like the fact that even the most boring places can be quite interesting. So, part of my job is to see extraordinary in a very ordinary.

Martin Parr Think of Finland

Once you look at what seems ordinary long enough, though, it often turns odd and unfamiliar, as any child repeatedly saying his own name aloud learns.

(And so I try it! horowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitzhorowitz … and my last name becomes a pulsing, throbbing vowel-crushing machine.)

Alexandra Horowitz On Looking

One popular American guidebook, The Laws of Etiquette; or, Short Rules and Reflections for Conduct in Society, informed readers that they ‘may wipe their lips on the tablecloth, but not blow their noses with it’. Another solemnly reminded readers that it was not polite in refined circles to smell a piece of meat while it was on one’s fork. It also explained: ‘The ordinary custom among well-bred persons is as follows: soup is taken with a spoon.’

Bill Bryson At Home

If you just take a door of your house and you open the door but you don’t exit, you open the door, but you don’t  enter. You just keep opening and closing the door for fifteen, twenty minutes. If you go to three hours the door is not the door anymore, the door transcends into something completely different. When you’re doing something long durational … you come to the state of boredom … if you’re really in the present the time doesn’t exist.

Marina Abramović (The New Yorker Festival)

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