Bumbling Fool . . . or is he?

Robert is reading a book he picked up in a thrift store in Idaho.  It is called A Thousand Acres, by Jane Smiley. Mira says she’s a well-known writer.  There is apparently a movie made from this book.

Robert will reserve general comment on the book and the writer, but he really likes one part.

See below.

The book is about farming and goes on at length describing farm life and the character of farmers. The writer describes one farmer in a way that Robert really enjoyed because it describes a guy with the personality that pretty much nails the one that Robert has always tried to achieve.  Namely, the self-described (and actual) bumbler who, in the end, everyone recognizes as an achiever.  Really cool if one can pull it off. Robert’s pretty sure he’s got the first half nailed.

But the really perceptive part of the passage is the part that describes the freedom that is enjoyed by the person with this character-type.  What is this guy?  Extremely selfish character full of false humility? Or is he giving more than he takes? Or, is he just a hugely innocuous nothing-burger? Nice writing.