Are You a Freak?

I remember one of my first days of high school and I hadn’t yet adjusted to the culture that is adolescence. At the lunch table I went on and on about something. Then there was a long silence. Then someone said, "Ben, you know, you’re really a freak." I thought about that for a second, and then responded: "You know, I think you’re right." Good news: Tom Peters is imploring that people hire freaks:

Never hire a human being who had a 4.0 in college. If they had a perfect GPA, it means they bought the act and never screwed around. Now a 2.0 is probably not so good. But the ones who had 3.0, yeah! Those are the freaks you want!

In his companion PPT, he lists six reasons why he loves freaks:

(1) Because when Anything Interesting happens … it was a freak who did it. (Period.)   
(2) Freaks are fun. (Freaks are also a pain.) (Freaks are never boring.)
(3) We need freaks. Especially in freaky times. (Hint: These are freaky times, for you & me & the CIA & the Army & Avon.)   
(4) A critical mass of freaks-in-our-midst automatically make us-who-are-not-so-freaky at least somewhat more freaky. (Which is a Good Thing in freaky times—see immediately above.)   
(5) Freaks are the only (ONLY) ones who succeed—as in, make it into the history books.   
(6) Freaks keep us from falling into ruts. (If we listen to them.) (We seldom listen to them.) (Which is why most of us—and our organizations—are in ruts. Make that chasms.)

Thanks Ian Ybarra for the link.

6 comments on “Are You a Freak?
  • Thanks!

    This made me feel better about myself.

    For all of my life I’ve been the odd man out. When you grow up, as I did, on two continents and in four countries, there are consequences. On the plus side, I can see most things more objectively along with what does and doesn’t work. On the other hand, it’s tough to really fit into the local scene in a seamless manner if you are unwilling to drink its “cool-aid”.

  • hahahaha, honestly, even you must see this is a sad atempt by your mind to make you not feel so bad about NEVER being considered cool by anyone. people just dont like you, you clearly dont have a very likable personality. i dont even know you and for some reason i just want to take those glasses off your face, stamp on them 7 times and place them back on your face and walk away. you think somehow, just because you’ve got a blog and a book you are somehow better then all those cool kids out there that just have good memories and fun stories. the fact that your a freek does not mean you think outside the box, it means you are trying to fit in to the “non-conformists.” the only thing sadder then a conformer is a conformer who doesnt see that he is conforming. the only thing sadder then that is going to be the look on your face when you suddenly wake up and realize that you have lived your entire life wrong and while you were busy reading books so you can feel smarter then everyone else, you shoulda been out being normal. normal is normal for a reason: because it is good. you are not good.

    and what kinda teenager wears a bow tie? i’ll tell you what kinda teenager. a teenager that wants to fit into the “wanna be tucker carlson” youth stereotype because he feels like he needs to fit in to something. winston churchill once said “If you’re not a liberal when you’re 25, you have no heart.” i would love to stick up for you, but winston churchill said it and he was a pretty smart guy, i would hate for people to believe i thuoght i was smarter then him. It baffles me how anyone who is so obviously obsessed with himself could manage to take time from looking in the mirror and writing own name lovingly on napkins to start a company. you truly are amazing, as you must already know.

    p.s. jon stewart kicked tucker carlson’s ass

  • Jacob, I don’t even think that Ben knows who Tucker Carlson is, so to make fun of him for that is probably simply untrue. Insults are much worse off when they are based in facts, as any true master of the art should know.

    And Ben, good point about freaks being the only ones who succeed. As we all know, the only way to be succesful in life is to be in the history books.

  • Ben,

    Thank you for sharing this.

    Speaking for myself, I am neither a freak nor am I normal.

    I can understand Mr. Peter’s point of view and I know there is not a right or wrong to this or anything else for that matter.

    Where I often confuse myself is allowing anyone to convince me that I’m….well anything. (And yes, I had and have very similar experiences with people calling me freak or weird or whatever.)

    Anyone other than me sees me incompletely by defintion. The tricky part is what I choose to say will manifest itself. So, if I choose to say I’m a freak, then I’ll be a freak and conform to a certain extent with the freaks. If I choose to say I’m normal and so on….

    I know you well enough to know that you consider everything said to you. My own answer (which is not yours or anyone other than mine) is to detach from the value of the outcome of any situation and simply act…and I will succeed. I can’t tell you your answer but I can put the intention out there that you will find it.

    So perhaps Mr. Peters’ (who I don’t know all that much about) efforts help because it shows us that designations of ANY kind divide us. Division creates unnecessary conflict.

    (Speaking of which I know you can find love for Jacob. Every message sent to you is sent with a loving intention (not by the person, but rather by our Creator…)

    I am neither a freak nor am I normal and neither is anyone else.

    Peace and Love,


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