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Taylor Mason Beat

The Year of the OpinionMicrophone

It’s The Year of The Horse in China, as good a metaphor as I could find as we look to the upcoming year. For never in the history of man have people made more money and become more successful than for having an opinion about something. And usually it’s nothing more than beating a dead horse.

Frankly most opinions, particularly socio-political ones, come from the wrong end of that horse.

Often those opinions are the four-horsemen-of-stupidity: factually wrong, inherently dumb, outrageously intolerant or just a waste of time.

That’s not an opinion, by the way. That’s just the way it is. TV networks are built on opinion shows. News has devolved into nothing more than a Trojan horse of people who disagree on some subject, often inane, and then climbing on their high horse to argue their “point of view” on giant monitors all over the country. Too bad they can’t get a charley horse in their throat!

I only have one opinion, and you heard it directly from the horse’s mouth. It’s simply this: I don’t care what some “expert” or “correspondent” says. I have my own opinion. I might agree with theirs, I might not. Either way, I don’t wanna know. I can make up my own mind, thank you, and I don’t need these Paul Reveres of conjecture riding down the information superhighway shouting their bits of wisdom from the saddle. A lot of times I don’t even have a horse in the race, if you know what I mean.

Miley Cyrus, the Pope, Phil Robertson, Ted Cruz, Kanye West, Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton, Obamacare, and whomever else you can name, I have my own ideas. My job is to poke fun even if I agree with them. That goes for the Chevy Volt (no horsepower there!) the iPad mini and the most violent video games.

Here’s a little opinion test. Do you watch a particular show or go to a website or listen to a radio program that espouses your opinion? One that sort of restores confidence in your opinion? That’s fine – your choice. But hold your horses! I can’t listen or watch or read someone who feels the same way I do because I won’t learn anything.

It’s no good listening to media types across the gamut who have an opinion completely different than mine either, because it feels as if I’m putting the cart before the horse - they rarely sway me (if ever) and since they didn't change my opinion, what’s the point? It’s not like I’m gonna change horses midstream!

So whose opinions do I listen to? Ah, now we’re getting somewhere. Because a live performer like myself gets an immediate response to his/her ideas and thoughts and jokes and songs and so forth. That, my friends, is a horse of a different color. Audiences never lie. The best humor has some truth to it. And I learn more from the folks who read my work and see me live than I do watching anything on television or on line.

It’s people like you who help me define my opinions, whether I write about my most heartfelt and personal values, or I’m just sharing a funny look at something we all see. Wild horses couldn’t drag me away from my approach.

There’s on old proverb: for want of a nail, the shoe was lost; for want of a shoe the horse was lost; for want of a horse the rider was lost.

Well that’s the horse I rode in on. And I’m lost in this world of “everyone should share their opinion! Out loud! All the time! And if their opinion is different than yours they must be wrong!”

I've got more horse sense than that. In fact I’m kind of a dark horse, running my own race. Hope you can come catch me horsing around on stage somewhere – I’m in Doylestown, PA on January 17!


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