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Is Malcolm Gladwell My Grandfather?

The Huffington Post logo The Huffington Post 30/03/2016 Dean Sioukas

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The dude looks like the love child of Art Garfunkel and Emily Watson. He is Canadian, a peaceable man and his forehead and hair are... awesome!
Then why do I think Malcolm Gladwell is my grandfather?
Let's back up.
Malcolm Gladwell is The New York Times bestselling author, most famous for his seminal book, The Tipping Point: How Little Things can Make a Big Difference (2000), along with two others, Outliers: The Story of Success (2008) and David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants (2013).
The man is a geek, not Greek, God. I have capitalized the "G" in God because he is a Deity-like figure for those computer kids, geeks, we all knew, or were, in high school. And now he is having his day. And God bless Him, and us, for that.
But, is he really that smart? Is he really saying something that insightful?
I paraphrase from his New Yorker article "How David Beats Goliath" and from Vivek Ranadive's YouTube video "How to Win At Anything..."

To win, in sports, life or business, you need three things:
1. To think outside the box.
2. To change the rules and/or make them play by your rules.
3. To work harder than everyone else.

Makes sense.
It is exactly what my grandfather told me when we used to take walks at Tibbetts Brook Park in the Bronx in the early seventies.
My grandfather was a German immigrant who may, or may not, have been "exchanged" for money by his father (depending on whose family history you choose to believe) and sent to America to help his uncle run a milk, egg and cheese delivery business in New York City. He worked six days a week, 13 hours a day delivering product up and down the illustrious, and not so illustrious, streets from Harlem to Wall Street. He did not speak the language and he did not know anyone, save his uncle. He watched as the FBI and CIA "rolled" house looking for anything that might tie him to the Motherland, when, in truth, he couldn't be happier being in America. He never complained about his station in life or that he had left his new bride in Germany. And, he kept his promise to send for her when he had saved enough money.
It is an immigrant story not dissimilar from many of our grandparents and/or relatives.
My grandfather thought outside the box. His family was wealthy by German standards of that time because they owned a saw mill. Instead of bemoaning why he was sent America, he saw it as an opportunity for himself.
He changed the rules of the game and made them play by his rules. When my grandfather ran up against a deli or storeowner riding him about his price of cream cheese, he would acquiesce and make up the difference on the eggs he sold them. He let the store owner have the victory and still came out ahead.
My grandfather was not educated beyond eighth grade, but no one could work harder than him. While I, obviously, never witnessed him working at his job, I could see, cutting wood next to him in his retirement, this man could work anyone under the table.
So, you see, while I am thrilled for the success of all his writings and what they have brought to the world discourse and our collective conscious, Malcolm Gladwell is really...
My grandfather.
This post originally appeared on The Whole Magilla and was written by Chris Meyer, co-founder of Dean Sioukas on TwitterFollow Magilla on Twitter

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