The first thing that has struck me in this class is the way that Parrott defines, explains, and defends her definition of normalcy. Being normal and “fitting in”, per se, is something that most human beings strive for; to blend in and to be, well, normal. But what if being normal is not good? Or what is it’s not everything we thought it would be? In relation to our health, what if being normal is bad? Parrott addresses each of these questions under the scrutiny of stories, numbers and poor health and describes the way that, as a society normalcy is described through the numbers and stories. Speaking about normalcy through numbers requires more than just a mere surface understanding of the numbers, but a deep and thorough understanding of how numbers effect our health and in turn, how we communicate about our health. Understanding the percentages, comparisons and ratios allows us to understand our risks, treatment options and ultimately, our outcomes; and lack of understanding can lead to less informed decision. Turning to stories is comforting, they sprinkle emotion into a situation where numbers can really only create a neutral voice an point of view. Numbers do not carry the weight of others’ situations, and stories go way beyond the surface, “numbers can’t convey how it feels to feel that way, or what to do in response.” Stories evoke an emotional component that numbers cannot provide. Stories equip us with affirmation and reassurance when faced with a medical decision and they give us an idea of what’s normal based on feeling. The personal relation of stories is comforting, and when we understand something on a personal and emotional level we begin to gain the confidence needed to make a large decision. It is helpful that we often think in stories, and therefore respond to stories as well. This understanding and response to stories also allows us to form what we can acknowledge as “normal”. Parrott’s vision of how the common society views poor health is surprisingly interesting to me in they way that she takes small truths and explicitly explains them in detail. Most of what she describes is common sense information but, we often take this common sense info and put it in the back of our minds as normal; especially when it comes to poor health. So, Parrott takes one word, “normal”,and puts it under the spotlights of stories, numbers and poor health. Under these spotlights she dissects the word and how we use normalcy to make decisions, cope emotionally, and cut corners when it comes to health. Parrott’s style of writing has me intrigued and her content is so simplified yet mind-stretching. I look forward to what she has to say about communication and how she will continue to take simple ideas and analyze them into big ideas that shape the way we think, rationalize and communicate about health.