|Royce won not because size and strength, but despite lacking them.|
1. The event is a surprise (to the observer).
2. The event has a major impact.
3. After its first recording, the event is rationalized by hindsight, as if it could have been expected (e.g., the relevant data were available but not accounted for).
I can give you many examples of Black Swan events but the best one related to grappling and MMA is the first UFC. When skinny ass Royce walked victorious out of the octagon it was 1, a suprise to all observers, 2, it had a major impact and 3. the even started a huge wave of rationalisation. That last one took a while (and in some people's minds still hasn't happened).
There are many conclusions that can be learned from such events, but what learning more and more about Black Swan events and grappling (or even life in general) has done is made me more humble and plain-out nice to people.
I have come to realise that the majority of people are not prepared for Black Swan events. They build their lives in a way that avoids surprises like the plague and rests on an (illusion of) certainty and predictability. When something happens that rocks that shaky foundation, they will spend much energy attempting to defend their old belief system. The jump to that last step of "rationalizing by hindsight, as if it could have been expected" takes a long time and may sometimes outlive the person. It's sad, but true.
I went thru events in my life that shook me and made me synical at first, but now I'm much less synical and more welcoming. BJJ helped. Buddhism helped. I love change. I understand that shit happens and that I, sometimes, won't be ready for it and I'm much more ok with it now than I once was.
I also try everyday to remind myself that when someone disagrees with the facts presented it could be because they are seeing a black swan for the first time. Their brain can not compute it or perhaps their heart is too scared to open up and embrace it.
Let's all just be nice to one another.
Liam "The Part Time Grappler" Wandi
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