What’s your opinion?

Jordana - Waynesboro, Pennsylvania
Entered on March 17, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

The Loch Ness Monster, true friendship, snow days, magic, happy endings: these are all things I believe in. But most of all, I believe in the power of opinion. When I eavesdrop in a stall in the girl’s bathroom next to girl-with-brown-hair who says to girl-with-nose-ring, “that cow keeps trying to steal my boyfriend”, then ten seconds later hear “that cow” complaining to her friend that brown-haired girl’s ugly boyfriend won’t stop hitting on her…I believe this more than ever.

When I hear two contrasting viewpoints such as these, I start to think a lot about opinions. Sometimes, just before I fall asleep and my mind is tangled up like the wires plugged into my roommate’s power source, I picture the planet as a big ball made of a rainbow of colors with each representing a different opinion. When I’m feeling a particular brand of pre-sleep creativity, the colors each start talking in the deafening chorus of the billions of different opinions the world over.

The first time I realized the earth was just an enormous bowl of human opinion, I was eight years old. As my father and I drove home and listened to NPR, we listened to the newscaster describing some incident of violence in the violence in the Middle East. It was then that I looked straight at my father and said, “Daddy, sometimes, I think there really isn’t any real TRUTH, just different people’s opinions.” My father shrugged this statement off and I’m pretty sure he does not remember it today. But personally, I felt collegiate because of the philosophical nature of my petite epiphany

Since then, I have listened to political debates, gossip in the cafeteria, movie critics, and family arguments. All of these little opinions make me wonder if anyone really has the answer. Usually, in our society, the guy with the RIGHT opinion is the one who won the war. But how do we know truly if that guy is the one who won? It would seem that this answer is also up to opinion. A truth to be taken anyway you like.

Personally, I stay away from having strong opinions. I like to stay in the gray area. This gray area is also known as the “I-mean-Jen-is-right-but-Hannah-is-equally-right” group. Black can be too depressing, even if slimming, and white stains so easily, but the middle gray is perfect for disappearing into the crowd. The middle gray is perfect for not offending anyone, for staying totally free of the hurt and the upset. Gray is the safe zone when playing tag on the playground at recess.

Still, no one can go through life without having any opinions. If devoid of opinion, the world would be a scary place. So, what’s my opinion? I am certain that Nessie, true friendship, my last snow day, magic, and happy endings meet up in the same coffee shop on the corner of East Franklin Street and talk about the violence in the Middle East. This I will always believe.