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This piece appears unedited from a free choice writing essay I was assigned in 11th grade IB English
Written Jan 27th 2019

A Closer Look at the Ordinary

Life centers around the bedroom. Every day starts and ends in the bedroom. The bedroom is where we go as a refuge from the confusion and complications of life. Our rooms fill an important role in our lives, and likewise, they reflect who we are as people. One may put up posters of a band they enjoy, or picture frames of beloved family members to express their interests and individuality. One’s bedroom is an incredibly accurate representation of the owner.

When entering my own room, one is confronted with a number of visual cues that give insight into who I am as a person. On the far wall, opposite to the door, hangs a large American flag that takes up the majority of my wallspace. This leads the witness to conclude, accurately, not only that I am patriotic, but that being American is a very large part of my identity. Ever since I was a young child, I have been brought up with a distinctly American set of morals, and experiences. Both played a large role in shaping who I am today. My parents instilled in me the importance of unalienable rights, and why they are a precious possession that needs to be fought for. This aspect of my personality is seen today in the ways that I navigate through life, and how I decide between between right and wrong.

Underneath the flag, a chocolate lab rests peacefully on my bed, with her head on my pillow. Across a number of cultures, almost since the beginning of time, dogs have been man’s trusted companion, gifted with loyalty, protection and a strong, emotional bond with their humans that surpasses even the strongest human relationships. Growing up, there has always been a dog in the house giving me the gift of man’s best friend. First was Gg, a white lab who, by the time I was born, was already in the far past her prime. I believe her calm, wise nature heavily influenced my childhood and who I have become. Contrast this with my current dog, Zoey, who is absolutely full of energy, and I have raised since she was a puppy. Her energy and excitement is infectious, and I was lucky enough to witness her have a litter of puppies.

A little to the left of my bed, tucked under my windowsill, the viewer is greeted by a friendly, blue record player and a stack of vinyl records. From this observation the viewer not only concludes that I enjoy listening to vinyl, but also learns much about my personality. I am able to appreciate the art and experience of music, without simply having digital playlists pounding through my eardrums. To listen to vinyl is to slow down the pace of everyday life, and to appreciate the art and culture of music. Furthermore, the large role that my vinyl hobby takes in my room, demanding room for my record player, and a shelf with my entire collection, shows how large a role music takes in my life.

My bookshelf, filled with dozens of records, lends further insight into my personality and morality. People are defined by the choices they make and the preferences they have, and likewise our music choices say much about who we are as people. The albums on my bookshelf consist almost exclusively of classic rock titles, ranging from The Beatles to Billy Joel. Classic rock is a genre defined by consistent values and morals. I have honestly learned as much about life from The Eagles’ One of These Nights as I have from school. Classic rock has helped played a large role developing who I am today, and all it is reflected by my room.

To the left of my doorway, there stands a small, simple desk, made of light brown wood. Cluttering the desk, are stacks of books, a typewriter, bits of wire, resistors, transistors, integrated circuits, pens, pencils, notepads, and my macbook. The clutter and disorganization of my desk starkly contrasts the neat state of my room, and this too lends insight into my personality. I consider myself to be an academic person, represented by the scores of books piled haphazardly on my desk. Their titles range on a variety of subjects and genres, but the majority concern themselves with the subject of computer science. This observation is backed up by the phosphor green terminal prompt flashing ominously on my computer screen. A similar interest in electronics and computer engineering can be deduced from the field of loose electrical components, tools and hand-drawn diagrams cluttering my desk, as well as the soldering iron smoking pungently in it’s base.

Next to my desk, occupying the wall to the left of my doorway, is a framed photo of the 2016 Newport Harbor Freshman Football team. My serious expression matches the field of serious faces, all donning the same stern buzz cut. Freshman football was an incredible year. I learned much about hard work, discipline, and teamwork. As we navigate life, there are many things that are out of our control. You can’t decide how smart you are, talented you are, how gifted you are. However, you can always control how hard you work, and how much effort you give. I honestly, believe that hard work is one of the most important qualities in a person, defining how successful they will be, and their merit.

Much can be discovered by looking closely at the ordinary. The decisions we make, and the morals we hold all serve to define who we are as people. The bed room is a prime example of this truth. By looking closer at my room I was discovered much about myself, and how we are defined by our surroundings. I challenge you to look at your own room, and see what you discover about yourself. You may be surprised.