Thursday, October 29, 2009

Chapter 5: The Three Lessons of Joe Flom

Looking at things that impacted Joe Flom's life we are able to see that even the smallest things can make a person a outlier in society. Once again it can come down to something as small as what year you were born in as to what your parents do for a living. I think that being at a certain place at a certain time can change your whole world but most of the time we don't realize that it changed our lives until a long time afterwards. For example, Gladwell was talking about how those born between 1912 and 1917 were demographically at an advantage compared to those who were born between 1903 and 1911. Those born in the later group would have graduated college during WWII and would have only been drafted into the military for three to four years. He described it as more of a bump in the road to their lives. Those born in the first group would most likely already have started families and their whole lives would have been disrupted when they were called up by the draft. Those in the second group were born at a demographical advantage. To compare, look at when the World Trade Centers were hit and collapsed. I was only in 8th grade and had a limited understanding of the world around me. My parents on the other hand were older and knew immediately that life would never be the same. Since then all the tight restrictions on things is normal for me while my parents remember a world where things weren't so restricted. You were able to bring liquids with you on a plane and not have to worry about a terrorist threat. The whole world changed, in a sense we could be demographically at an advantage because the way the world is today is the only way that we know the world. There are no changes that have to be made for us while the older generation has to adjust to new and ever changing regulations.

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