My blessing, or perhaps curse, is that of every situation calling for decisive judgment I am able to see two sides. I see the attractions of a manly, simple style, but also am not blind to the appeal of euphuistic ornamentation; I fear the snobbery of elites but also shrink from the brazenness of the profanum vulgus; I love the simple clog dances of the rustic farmer but also the rococo cosmopolitanism of the Tin Pan Alley urbanite; my heart melts at the simple pacifism of THE NAZARENE, but I recognize also that sometimes if we fail to pay thuggery back in a language it understands we are responsible for its flourishing. That said I felt I was shrinking from a responsibility viz. to have and express a strong opinion. Is not humanity pushed forward by those whose opinions are strong? Is not politics a fight of good versus evil, where the holy by dithering give the palm of power to the base? Is it not a sign of a stout tree-like soul to know what one thinks and say it forcefully, opining like the proverbial Lone Pine, if instead of xylem, phloem and chloroplasts it had instead Syntax and Propositions and Words?
Bearing these and a thousand other equally perspicuous considerations firmly in mind I approached my good friend Todd, waited for him to mention a topic upon which opinions differ and vouchsafed upon him a right strong one.
“Wow” said Todd “That’s a strong opinion. And you expressed it strongly.”
“It is.” I said. “And I did.”
“You must feel it strongly.”
“I do. The matter upon which I have opined is one of which I have settled my mind with the firmness of a fortification that will withstand the ages AERE PERENNIUS” was my response. “There is no other way. That is the way it is.”
“I see.” said Todd “Well…I agree with you.”
“As you should.” I said.
I returned to my library and my studies upon the ancient Cynics and their progenitor Antisthenes. Evening became night. I pored over the ancient tomes. My eyelids grew heavy. Suddenly as if in a dream the old philosopher appeared to me
“Kaplan!” he said “You expressed a strong opinion and convinced your friend of it. But what if?”
My head snapped backwards, I was as awake as the Sleepless Noctophant. I got on my bicycle hurried over in top speed to Todd’s house, banged on the door. He came out bleary-eyed. I shouted in his ear, protecting my conscience from an un-expungable blot;
“REconsider, my good friend! Reconsider. I might be wrong!”