Just wanna be average essay

Franco Abbatessa


I Just Wanna be Average Essay

When moving around and living in a difficult area it can shape you and help make your identity. In I Just Wanna be Average Mike Rose is an italian boy whos family moved over to the united states from southern italy and it was hard for his family growing up. When his mother came over she had to dropout of school in the seventh grade because she had to take care of her sick brothers. In Rose’s early life it was hard for him because his dad had a rough life when it came to his health and his mom barely made any money.      Comparing Rose to Coates there are many differences in there early life. For Rose his family they had to work with what they could just like when he says “used my mother’s engagement ring as a downpayment, and moved to 9116 South vermont Avenue, a house about one and one-half miles northwest of Watts. The neighborhood was poor, and it was in transition.” pg. 12  When Rose says this it shows his struggle that his family is going through right away and later on in this paragraph he says that all types of people live there like some old retired white guys, the young black people moving in from Watts, and then some immigrant Mexican families were even moving in. This states how much money his family has along with what they were working for.For Coates when he was growing up he was going through some similar stuff as Rose, just like when Coates said that sometimes he couldn’t afford to eat some nights. This shows how Coates and Rose had some similar struggles in their early lives.    Both of them had different people around them when they were growing up and different types of people to talk to and learn from. But they also had different forms of violence in their areas.   For Coates his neighborhood was much worse then Rose due to where Coates grew up. In Baltimore at his time of growing up it was very unsafe. Coates made this clear when he said “ The boy with the small eyes reached into his ski jacket and pulled out a gun. I recall it in the slowest motion, as though in a dream. There the boy stood, with the gun brandished, which he slowly untucked, tucked, then untucked once more, and in his small eyes I saw a surging rage that could, in an instant, erase my body. That was 1986…” pg 19 This means that in his neighborhood there was a lot of gun violence and gang violence. It had to have been pretty bad if they gave a little kid a gun in order to protect himself. Then in Rose’s neighborhood there was more drugs and kids doing stupid things in order to get in trouble. This is shown when Rose says “But the anger and frustration of South Vermont could prove too strong for music’s illusion; then it was violence that provided deliverance of a different order. One night I watched as a guy sprinted from Walt’s to toss something on our lawn. The police were right behind, and a cop tackled him, smashing his face into the sidewalk…..” pg 17 This shows what would happen in Rose’s neighborhood compared to Coates if you look at the way they spoke about there neighborhoods you would know right away that Coates was a lot more harsh and violent then Rose. They both did suffer from violence in their early lives Coates just happened to be a lot worse.