The Books and Its Influence

Thursday, April 2nd 2009

In the opening chapter of Malcolm Gladwell’s book which is titled Outliers -the story of success-, there is a story about the Rosetans (people of Roseto, Pennsylvania). Malcolm tried to lead the readers to understand more about the meaning of Outliers by using the story of Roseto. There is a reason behind, it is because uncommon things were happened with the people which were living in there. Which was, the Rosetans were dying because of old age. That’s it.

Maybe now you can say that the people dying of old age is a common thing, but looking back to 1950s when the statistical fact said that most American were dying because of heart attack. And it was rare to find the Rosetan dying because of it. It was also hard to find an old people (above 55) in Roseto which had signs and indications of heart disease. Stewart Wolf, a physician, had tried many predictions and any kind of possibilities to find the answer about why this anomaly was happened. His research found a dead end when gene, food and and any other theories could not explain this Rosetan’s phenomenon. Until he realized that the magical things is the Roseto itself. So, what were they doing?

In a short saying, they were living their life. Compared to modern life style, their life is kind of unique. From grandparent to grandchild living under one roof. They would stop and chat while they met each other. Cooking together and sharing each other in their backyards. Visiting their neighbors and relatives. And many activities that could strengthen their bond. Nobody feels that they live for their own. Muslim have known this as silaturahim, or ukhuwah.

After read that book, I felt lucky when I did not have any freedom to cook in my room anymore. Thus, I can visit my friend place to spend my weekend for certain times. And for certain purposes. We’re cooking together (we cooked siomay last week, and gado2 three weeks ago), talked about anything, made jokes, learned how to play bridge, and so on that could aside us from our daily routines. Or, took a short vacation or a trip with some friends which was covered by “hunting” purpose. So, do not feel curious if, lately, my posts contain of “jalan-jalan” report (although in some reports I did it alone).

Another book which gave influence to me is Dale Carnegie’s book, as I reviewed before. Do not know why, after read that book I’d like to rethink what I have written when I chat with someone, either when I wrote an email. Sometimes I tried to place myself into his/her position. I imagined whether this word or sentence will suit to him/her or not. I am just trying not to do the wrong things to anyone I interact with. Even maybe I could be careless, I was not meant to do that. Another side of this book that I ever read its comment said, it guides you to be another person. But in my opinion, as long it guides us to become better and better, why not?

I’d like to analyze and guessing the character of the people around me as a result of reading Personality Plus. And what I could learned from this book is, we can be somebody else by imitating the personality which is not belong to us. Even somehow it is hard to be done. Another lesson that I absorbed, we can treat people in a proper way when we know their personality.

The Google Success Story book also has influence on me. Since the founding fathers of Google studied in Stanford University, even though it seems almost impossible for me to reach the university, my desire to follow their steps are becoming stronger and stronger. Do not see the result right? See the process (self-defense statement). Actually the trigger why I want to go there is not that book and the story inside, it was my grandteacher, the Maha Guru Berkemeja Putih.

Last but not least, Kelik Pelipurlara’s book which is titled Plesetan Republik Indonesia. Kelik is the master of plesetan (help me find the proper English for this word), and I was honored to become his apprentice by studying his book. Children love plesetan, I also did (or do?). Climb its 4 or 5 tiny ladder-step, take a sit position while straighten two legs, take a deep breath, then… mleset! (krik… krik… krik… I wonder you know what I mean).

Well, that is a few books of mine which somewhat has given a little impact into my life. How about you?