I haven't been here "from the day Perlmonks started," yet am in your list of "saints." If you want to see my examples of creative thinking, or anyone elses, go to that person's homepage here (just click on my nickname), click on the writeups number, and then tell it to sort on reputation. Both ends of this spectrum could be considered "creative thinking" - both popular and not.
While this is fundamentally true, it is not entirely. This is the reason why, IMHO, often people complains about the XP system and tries to suggest alternatives. Indeed there's a net discrepancy between, say, my most upvoted nodes and those that I consider the best ones. And it's just the same with the most downvoted and the worst ones.