Those lucky bastards

So many things seem to happen by chance.

That job that apparently landed on your lap, that creative breakthrough you just had in the shower, that great tweet which was a huge success. Things like these — and many more — are the typical issues we tackle by observing what was happening right then, right there, and draw a conclusion based on that context.

Alas, us humans are mostly terrible at connecting cause and consequence. Most of the time, since we don't have 99% of the really important information, we just take a guess and let our conclusions out. This is why we sometimes consider that just because B came after A, A is necessarily the cause of B. Worse than that is neglecting the existence of A and considering B was just a consequence of good timing. It just happened by chance, and some guy happened to be in the middle of it to reap the benefits.

Reading books like Freakonomics is a great exercise in realizing that most of what we (think we) know is wrong. This is probably one of the most important things to learn before dealing with creative work, which is often viewed as a product of out-of-nowhere "eureka" moments and good luck.

Things which, coincidentally, somehow so many people never get to have. How unfair.