We all look for the rarer and more interesting birds, and just try to look around the common birds that are there every day, right? The totally common ones are often just distractions that make it harder to spot the rarer ones. But which are common and which are rare depends on where you are...
Imagine how awesome it would be to see a mallard if it were rare. I mean, it's quite a bird. Even a rock dove (urban pigeon) might seem special if it were hard to find.
What are your birds that are so common you just kind of ignore them? Here's my list, for the eastern S.F. Bay Area:
All environments: rock dove, american crow, turkey vulture, house finch.
Urbanized areas: house sparrow, brewer's blackbird, western gull.
More natural areas: western scrub jay, lesser goldfinch, chestnut-backed chickadee, oak titmouse, anna's hummingbird, dark-eyed junco (oregon), california towhee, mourning dove, american robin, wild turkey, common raven, acorn woodpecker (depending on trees).
By fresh water: canada goose, mallard, american coot, double-crested cormorant, red-winged blackbird (no yellow spot), cliff swallow.
By salt water: western gull (vast numbers), brown pelican, great egret, snowy egret, western grebe, black-crowned night heron. (There are lots of wading shorebirds, but they're too mixed and varied to single any out here.)
Of course, it's always an iffy judgment call to decide where to cut off the list, for birds that are almost routinely common, such as starlings.
I'd like to hear what you have all over that I never see, and vice versa.