In Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers, the Introduction is about the number one outlier that affects my life. It is about Roseto Pennsylvania and the Roseto Effect.
The scientific study that was done on this town, when it was found to have such a low rate of heart disease back in the late 1950’s/early 1960’s, found nearly no correlation between what the people of the town ate and their health. Ultimately it was attributed to the community centered, church centered, family centered life. This is what I call “life around the table”. It was stated that the people nourished each other.
“The Roseto Effect is the phenomenon by which a close-knit community experiences a reduced rate of heart disease” and ultimately a great number of other ills as well, whether they be physical, mental, societal.
It is an outlier.
Having grown up with this story and having spent a lot of time going back and forth to the original Roseto in Italy this lifestyle is not strange to me. To me it is normal. To most of the people I know, it is NOT normal.
I would go to Roseto Valfortore in the summers and loved it. I remember in college spending 5 weeks of my summer in this little village and going home at the end to the question… “what did you do in Italy all summer?” My answer was “nothing!” But it was the best “nothing” you could ever do! I went there and I LIVED. I communed. I talked with friends. I was social. People said, “Good Day” (Buongiorno) to me as soon as I walked out of my house and I said “Good Day” back. It was pleasant. It was simple. And yes…it was that simple!
This is the stuff books are written about, but we just simply lived it.
Since I was 4 years old, we went back regularly. I went to preschool in the village and then just summers until many years later when I took my own 6 kids to go to school there for the year. My two oldest (my twins) were invited to play soccer in Italy after having been seen by a coach one summer playing in a friendly game against a nearby village. So, we decided to run with it and bring all 6 to go to school and play soccer in Italy.
I can tell you that was the best year of my life. I was LIVING.
So why does the Roseto Effect have to be an OUTLIER? Especially when it is still being lived in Roseto Valfortore, Italy.
What can we learn from this? Why can’t we change our lives willingly to become more like the people of Roseto PA when they were still outliers and the people of Roseto Valfortore still today?
I think that as a society… we need to “REVIVE THE ROSETO EFFECT”.
But how do we do this?
We get “BACK TO THE TABLE”.
It has already been studied and proven that it is not just what we eat that ultimately makes us the healthiest.
It is HOW we eat and live our lives. TOGETHER.
Join me in spreading the BACK TO THE TABLE MOVEMENT so we can Revive the Roseto Effect.
Forget being OUTLIERS. We ALL need to LIVE IT.
Coming soon will be more insights and lessons on living the Roseto Effect so as to Affect others.
Our society needs this.