"A Life Less Ordinary"

with Cameron Diaz

Viewed September 30, 2000

OK, I don't know why we keep coming up with quirky movies, but this one exceeded most of the others. I'd use the term "weird." Anyway, we were confused enough by the end of the movie trying to figure out what really happened that it took us a while to change our mindsets and actually start constructing questions.

But after we finally got started, we came up with some doozies. And then we spent the entire discussion period on Question #1. (Maybe we can answer the rest of the questions next week....) We talked about how our fears and beliefs about money have limited our incomes (and how that's starting to change), how our views of dating and marriage have kept us stuck in unfulfilling relationships (or in some cases, helped us break free of them), and how our convictions about what's important in life have led us into and out of various churches and organizations.

Then we realized that we had received a lot of our beliefs from our parents, either by direct instruction or by osmosis. And that's when we made the leap: we realized that most of our parents' beliefs were a result of their upbringing, too, and that the experiences and beliefs of our grandparents have had a huge impact on the way we live OUR lives.

We talked about how the Great Depression, the World Wars, and even the great Flu Epidemic of 1917-1918 (during which literally millions of Americans died, often entire families), influenced the tenor of that era, and helped us understand what seemed to us as kids like excessive protectiveness, fear or frugality. We also remembered that some of our grandparents died or ran away when our parents were young, probably leaving our parents with emotional scars. Given those situations, we felt like we could understand our parents in a different and clearer way than we ever had before.

Here are the questions:


  1. How have my beliefs helped create my life?
  2. How much am I willing to "Live Dangerously"?
  3. How "stupidly honest" am I?
  4. If I were being honest, what would I admit attracts me about superficial relationships?
  5. Why does it take something extreme before I'll change myself or my situation?
  6. In what areas of my life do I not let myself "cross the line" that I've set for myself?
  7. How do I get the courage to go beyond what I am right now?