The people in my circle think that I’m opinionated. Well, my circle is very small— it really means something when someone tells you in your face that you are opinionated. Not good. I may seem like a dogmatic, inflexible, arrogant, pompous, stubborn and perhaps even prejudiced son of a gun. And I shouldn’t even deny that— trying to deny that is by itself a pompous act.
But… I rarely provide my opinions on anything. I’m just too ignorant to be with those people around me in Philadelphia who all belong in the higher socio-economic class than I. Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t the self-deprecation for which I’m wrongly known. My knowledge is often too focused (=geeky) and not for casual opinion-sharing. I subscribe to neither the New Yorker magazine nor the New York Times that almost everyone around me seems to mention in the conversations. Talk about being inflexible in a social setting— I’m usually the quietest one in the group, not only because I’m shy but also because, in many cases, either I don’t know what they are talking about or I fail to take (and keep) an interest in the subject of the moment, because my attempt to do so would eventually make me realize how inadequate my general knowledge is. Even when the subject is within the field of music, it’s not rare when I feel at a complete loss sitting among the successful young professional musicians. I’m not even learned in the field of early music in a true sense, let alone the general classical music field… I’m just a Bach guy. It’s pretty sad.
And even when I share my opinion on something, I’d always be honest about what I think, and I would even clarify if I felt that my opinion might have been compromised by something outside of my objective observation and a posteriori knowledge. I’ve been careful about this as I realize how strongly my sentiment can influence my judgement… (and I shall talk about it in another blog post). When you hear me say something negative, that’s usually when something doesn’t meet my expectations. This may possibly be the ultimate reason why people think I’m opinionated AND I self-deprecate too often. In the areas and fields I care about, my standards are high and often difficult to meet, as they should be.
Usually I provide my opinions when I’m asked, and when I’m comfortable with the subject matters. If you have ever thought I was opinionated, it means you have asked for my opinions in the past, and you knew I had something to say— yes, you brought the opinionated Koji to yourself. It wasn’t me, it was you.
Booyah. : )
Happy birthday to my dear sister in California.