A Woman Defined

Art & Culture by Mahvash Mossaed

Book Recommendation: Thank You for Being Late by Thomas Friedman

March 11, 2018

Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations 

Thomas Friedman is one of my most favorite columnists and authors.  In his latest book, “Thank You for Being Late,”  he once again manages to keep his readers’ interest intact, like an invisible string which is never tangled or cut off all through the almost 500 pages of his book. The book is tediously gathered volume of a thought-provoking, high-density collage of information and data on economy, politics, culture, technology, globalization, climate change and mother nature. It examines companies like Uber, AirBNB, IBM, Kindle, and Twitter.  Additionally, it examines the history and cause of social changes which are happening in our new advanced age of computers, software, hardware, and cloud technology.

Thomas Friedman has put together information like patchwork of a king-sized quilt of all various colors, sizes, and topics. Each topic is explained and examined lengthily to the point that it is in need of having its own zip code!  Information, which he has put all into one pot, has been given time to simmer and cook well until it turns into a completely chewable, tender, and easy-to-digest stew of a technical book.  The ingredients used to make this dish are mostly informative and, some are already “common knowledge” which has been elaborated, decorated, and now, presented to us on steroids. Some of these topics go on and on, for pages and pages. In some instances, they even drag towards the boring side. One such example is the part when the author decides to go on a venture of praising his wonderful memories of his home town, Minnesota.
In the beginning of the book, Thomas Friedman is able to personalize and humanize his contents by telling us the story of his encounter with the parking attendee and their simple friendship and numerous idealistic political discussions. However, he drops that subject all together just before starting to jump from one title to another, without giving his readers a prior notice.
The fact here is that we all are in agreement with Thomas Friedman when he claims that the world would be taken over by computers, and the robots are soon coming to steal our jobs and our livelihood. The fast pace of technology will only allow survival for those of us who can channel it, log into it, and keep up with it, as fast as it’s marching forward.  Thankfully, in the end of the book, the author wears his rose-tinted glasses and brings us the optimistic good news of a happy ending. He announces that in spite of it all, we will adapt and our upside down, unbalanced, crooked technology-stricken universe will be able to balance itself, as far and as much as we will all not only survive but will even thrive!
On a positive note, this book manages to inspire us to get ourselves prepared and positioned to deal with an avalanche of technology-oriented changes which will soon be upon us, affecting and altering our lives as a country, as a society, and through the way companies and organizations are run and managed.
I found “Thank You for Being Late,” even though quite technical, easy to swallow, easy to digest and a joy to read. Go get the book, read it, and let me know your take on it!

About the author

Thomas L. Friedman has been awarded the Pulitzer Prize three times for his work with The New York Times, where he serves as the foreign affairs columnist. Read by everyone from small-business owners to President Obama, Hot, Flat, and Crowded was an international bestseller in hardcover. Friedman is also the author of From Beirut to Jerusalem (1989), The Lexus and the Olive Tree (1999), Longitudes and Attitudes (2002), and The World is Flat (2005). He lives in Bethesda, Maryland.

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