This book is a collection of aphorisms. I have recommended Taleb’s other work highly; The Bed of Procrustes is very different but equally good.
In order to convince you of the quality of the book I shall choose 5 aphorisms at random, representing about 1% of the book (well, less than that because of the footnotes, Preface, and Postface).
Sports feminize men and masculinize women.
What made medicine fool people for so long was that its successes were prominently displayed and its mistakes (literally) buried.
You can be certain that the head of a corporation has a lot to worry about when he announces publicly that “there is nothing to worry about.”
It is a very recent disease to mistake the unobserved for the nonexistent; but some are plagued with the worse disease of mistaking the unobserved for the unobservable.
True love is the complete victory of the particular over the general, and the unconditional over the conditional.
OK, I didn’t cheat, and I guess that sample is representative in quality; but what it does not convey is that when you read the entire book, all 400+ aphorisms plus the notes, Taleb’s entire worldview comes into focus in sort of a pointillist way. There’s a lot to argue with, but you’ll be smarter after reading this book.