Having strong opinions makes you more interesting. (See what I did there?) You have, of course, noticed this: the most alluring person at the last dinner party you attended was taking a hard line on why “the Cavs truly deserve to win The Finals,” even if they’re bound to lose overall. We’ve watched this (and every) presidential race unfold in dramatic fashion largely because politicians — especially while running for office — are simultaneously polarizing and magnetic. When someone draws a hard line in the sand, whether in regards to the country’s economic situation, a pro ball tournament or, say, what color to paint the den, it’s impossible to ignore. We can’t look away. Big opinions drive our curiosity and spike our passions.

That’s why taking a stand is so important. The actual subject notwithstanding, having a black-and-white POV on a variety of subjects is what forms our identities, relationships, conversations and careers. Otherwise, things get pretty boring. Which isn’t to say that most of our thinking lives shouldn’t take place in a gray area — a 100 percent rigid and absolutely unbending life produces what we in the modern era call extremists. (Or, what nerds long, long ago would have called Siths.) Moral of the story: pick your battles wisely and sprinkle them around sparingly, but when you do land on an opinion, embrace it in a chokehold that would make John Cena blush. Oh, one last note: the most important rule to follow in regards to taking a stand is that you must always, always be willing to back down and change your mind. Because the unexamined life is not worth living at all.

This week at GP, like every other week, we’ve introduced myriad opinions in the form of advice, takedowns of very popular television shows and in choosing truly iconic products. We’ve given you a rare glimpse into the world’s oldest watchmaker — rare because, frankly, not everyone deserves to see “how the donuts are made.” We’ve profiled companies who take a hard line in regards to supersonic air travel — demonstrating that man’s destiny is to conquer physics. Hell, we even proclaimed to have found a better — the best, in fact — mac ‘n’ cheese. This is a collection of great stories. Don’t agree? Well, that’s just, like, your opinion, man. Nick Caruso

Words Without Context

A Notable Quote From The Week

“If it’s done and it’s okay and you don’t have any problem of price or quality, and you say it’s okay — for me it’s not okay, because it was just your first idea and the first idea is never the best. Perhaps it’s a good one, but you should improve that. If you have a problem, you are obliged to improve and obliged to change your mind. And when you are obliged to change your mind, it’s a great opportunity to find another solution, another aesthetic.”
– Alexandre Peraldi, as told to Andrew Connor

Matters of Opinion

Opinions are Like [body parts] — Everybody Has One

The Originals: 6 Iconic Products That Define Their Own Categories


These products lead categories by example rather than by contrivance, each serving as inspiration and aspiration. They are icons, and very deserving of the title.

Four Companies Leading the Return of Supersonic Air Travel


It’s easy to find many reasons not to build a supersonic passenger airplane. These are the companies who have the best shot.

Opinion: ‘Top Gear’ Is Officially Dead


Good news! Top Gear is back. The only problem is that it’s just not that great.

9 Things You Should Stop Doing at the Gym


Young, old, newcomer or veteran, gym-goers of all types are guilty of bad habits and poor etiquette. Don’t be one of them.

A Rare Look Behind the Scenes at the World’s Largest Watchmaker


The people and machinery behind the world’s largest watchmaker — and the world’s thinnest watch.

Italy’s Version of Macaroni and Cheese Is Better, Faster and Easier


Straight from Rome to your kitchen.

Behind the Scenes

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