Review: Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!

June 2015

I recently finished this on the suggestion of about eight different people. Feynman has entertaining stories, and the book’s conversational style is fun. I’m not sure getting “a peek into Feynman’s mind” or whatever was actually that helpful though.

It was interesting how much time Feynman spent essentially fooling around with random stuff. Somehow it always seemed to work out well for him–e.g. he would start playing the bongos and end up performing professionally for a ballet, or take up painting and end up selling his paintings to random people, or go to Brazil and end up playing in a samba band.

I’m not sure whether this demonstrates that fooling around was somehow important to Feynman’s success, or just that if you’re as quick as Feynman you can do whatever you want.


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