But Ellison seems to have survived unscathed. If the take-over fails, as it appears likely to do, we’ll just look back on Ellison’s role in it and chuckle.
In other words, Larry Ellison has placed himself in a position where he is outside the normal rules of business and society, where traditional causality as we know it doesn’t apply. But, you might ask, isn’t he headed for a fall? No, probably not.
And how does he get away with it all? Because he wants to, because he’s smart and lucky and supremely focused. But most of all, because, like those estimable ladies told me that day at lunch, Larry Ellison just makes things so damn exciting.
Michael S. Malone, once called “the Boswell of Silicon Valley,” most recently was editor-at-large of Forbes ASAP magazine. His work as the nation’s first daily high-tech reporter at the San Jose Mercury-News sparked the writing of his critically acclaimed The Big Score: The Billion Dollar Story of Silicon Valley, which went on to become a public TV series. He has written several other highly praised business books and a novel about Silicon Valley, where he was raised.