Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Deviate From The Norm

Take The Path Less Traveled-

As I sit here trying to think of what would best be considered 'deviant' to write about, it dawns on me that over the past few decades the line between 'deviancy' and 'the norm' has been so far obscured that it's almost impossible to tell what would actually fall into that category. In today's world, there are so many people from various different walks of life all living in the same space that what once may have been considered deviant behavior is now something you see every day on the streets. Whether we realize it or not, most of the people we meet deviate from what many consider to be 'the norm' at least a few times throughout their lives. Most of them probably even break 'the norm' on a daily basis. But what would really define 'normal' these days? In a major city like Philadelphia, deviancy has practically become the new norm. I can think of no better example than myself.

Believe it or not, I'm actually at work in this picture.
Looking back, I realize that whether I ever knew it before or not, I've consistently been deviating from what many would consider a 'normal life path' for the better part of the past decade. Even now, when people ask me what I do for a living, they often don't believe me because my job sounds so unrealistic and so outside of 'the norm' for someone my age (or anyone for that matter) that I must be making something up. What do I do you ask? I'm Editor in Chief for a major comic book website ( That’s right, my job is to read and write about comic books, and I do all of this while still working on my bachelors degree, all because I deviated from 'the norm' and quit my day job to follow my dreams.

My life was never necessarily easy in high school, and during my first few years I had to deal with the death of a parent as well as a highly debilitating illness (no worries, I've since gotten better) that prevented me from going to school on a regular basis. By the time I was sixteen, my grades were completely shot due to poor attendance, and any chance I had of getting into a good college went right out the window. By age seventeen I had completely dropped out of high school and had stopped doing a whole lot of anything with my life. I spent the better part of a year just hanging out with my friends, playing video games, playing guitar and reading comics; essentially living the teenage dream. Outside of my own father, no one really supported me in my decision to do any this, and the majority of the people in my life looked at me with a certain stigma because I wasn't doing what they considered the be the right thing or 'the norm'. I eventually figured out that I wanted more from life and took steps to go back and finish school of my own volition, graduating with top marks and moving on to college, where you can find me today. I honestly don't think I would have made it as far as I have in life if I didn't drop out of school for that year to figure out who I really was. Deviating from the usual path most people follow probably saved me from a life of misery and helped to catapult me into every geeks dream job.

So what is 'normal'? Who really decides what 'the norm' is and sets that standard? Society may have its standards that we’re all subliminally expected to live by, but as the world grows and society evolves, we're going to be seeing a lot less normalcy and a lot more deviation.

-Jordan DesJardins


  1. I would first like to say I absolutely love this blog. I admire that you haven't sculpt your life around what society expects. Absolutely you broke a norm however there are so many people that wished they to possessed the determination and strength that you have. You followed your dreams and that is admirable along, not to mention the trials you’ve encountered during your ride to success. I wish that I had the courage to do exactly what I wanted to despite what my parents and others would say and or think. Yes I’ve broking a few “norms” however there is always some invisible hold that’ll never allow me to go full throttle. I appreciate this blog and individuals like you who aren’t afraid to take the bull by the horn and stare it in the direction you want it to go.
    -Shante Hall

  2. That true as the world goes on people more and more are getting away from what society labels as the norm for male and female. I decicded when i started back to school, that i don't want to be like everyone else athough I find myself doing it because that what we are taught. I found out being outside of the norm is cool and nobody really redicule you for what you want to be except for the older people. Some people don't like change... But it is alright to be different.

  3. I absolutely love this bolg. i had also dropped out of high school,it made me realize what i wanted my life to be like. i was never considered normal growing up, but i never let societies judgement of me stop be from being who i truly am.