File 0002.2: I like opinions like I like my mushroom soup, I don’t like mushroom soup
February 1, 2024
I think it must have been almost 20 years ago…which made me realize that I’m almost 40. Not that I care about that but still…40…that’s a nice big round number.
But I digress, and I’m not even three lines into this post. This must be a record…
Almost 20 years ago I was part of this opinion panel of the Metro newspaper, I don’t think it exists anymore. There were two free daily newspapers distributed in The Netherlands, the Spits and the Metro. I liked the Metro better because they had better comics and a reader’s letters page. I remember the time (when I was still young and stupid…now I’m just old and…well your opinion might vary) when I wrote letters to the Metro comparing the stink of mushroom soup to the stink of smoking and saying they were equal. Like I said, I was young and stupid.
The stink of mushroom soup is of course much worse! *
But I digress…
It also had an opinion panel. And I, as a young…20-something year old had opinions! (see above), so of course when the call came to become a member of the opinion panel! I responded! I, Erik, a 20-something IT student would tell the world my opinions!
And they accepted my application!
Since that day, every day I would get an e-mail, and even sometimes a phone call where they would ask my opinion and if I responded there was a chance that my name and photo (which was a terrible photo of myself and I’m very happy that it is not anywhere online, for anybody to find (believe me, I looked)) and I noticed quite quickly that in fact, I did not have an opinion about…many things.
The majority of questions they asked me I simply did not have an answer for and if they even called me I really struggled to come up with a solid one-liner. After a couple of years, I think they quietly got rid of the opinion panel, they did not even inform us that they would stop or they quietly dropped me from the list because I didn’t respond enough, I don’t know.
I realised then that sometimes not having an opinion can be a good thing and I have noticed that the older I get the less I have strong opinions about things.
When I was younger, maybe even younger than the 20-something year old I had very strong opinions about a certain pairing in a book about a magic wizard boy. Turns out the author did not share those opinions with me but that did not stop me from having these opinions and arguing about them online! I used to care about not liking something and telling people about it.
But now…my standard for a “good” film is basically: Was I bored in the last couple of hours? If not, it was good.
I’d be a terrible film critic. This is why I’m glad I never started my idea for a show where I would critique bad films where I would film in a static room, where always the same outfit, play clips of the films, and tell jokes in between (because you know..that had never been done before).
What made me want to write this post, in particular, is that we were watching a Kevin Hart film named “Lift” the other day and I quite enjoyed it (read: I wasn’t bored). When I looked up the film on Reddit (which is what I like to do after watching a film) I was a bit surprised by the overwhelming negative opinion about it and how they all made very valid points why this film is objectively bad.
So naturally I did what I used to do and wrote a strongly argued post about why it was a good film!
Actually, I didn’t. Because also…since becoming older I noticed that I don’t feel the need to always share my opinion about things even if I have them and to let people be. As the Green brothers like to say: Don’t yuck on someone’s yum.
I might not like stinky mushroom soup but if other people find it yummy, who am I to yuck on it?
*That’s a joke of course, I am fully aware that second hand smoke is undeniably worse