What is normal?

People often complain that something isn't normal. For example, if a guy wears high heels in public and there isn't a pride parade, passersby might glare and whisper, "That just isn't normal." But the word "normal" always refers to the most commonly observed segment of a distribution. Most guys don't wear high heels. If they did, then wearing high heels would be normal. And I would be abnormal.

So, because "normal" is a segment within a spectrum or continuum, "normal" is not an absolute or fixed point. In fact, in any given case, if you zoom into the segment of things that are considered normal, you might find the most common subsegment, which makes what was normal now suddenly abnormal!

And if you keep segmenting, you might eventually realize that the only "normal" segment represents only a small sliver of the entire spectrum. Suddenly, "normal" becomes rare! And that, I'm afraid, just isn't normal.