Trivia can be fascinating and Malcolm Gladwell is good at peaking our interests in his current book, Outliers: the Story of Success. Did you know that 15 of the 75 wealthiest people in world history (in current dollars) were born in the nine years from 1831-1840 in America? What was it about those years that could produce such wealth?
He also has vignettes on other outliers, “men and women who do things out of the ordinary.” What is the secret behind Bill Gates success and a lawyer named Joe Flom who created the most successful law practice in New York? Why do Asian children do so well at math and how is that linked to growing rice? The majority of the best junior hockey players in Canada are all born during January, February or March. Why? What did cultures with high degrees of courtesy and politeness have to do with a Columbian and South Korean plane crash?
The debate continues as to the amount and degree of research that Gladwell has done in regard to this book, but I found it to be very thought provoking and entertaining.