A shorter letter today as we’re wrapping up a big week, futurists.
We have a few items for you to queue up for your weekend:
👓First: settle in for Brian’s longform dissertation on the nature of human consumption, the spiritual connections we form when breaking bread together, and his prediction that modern day vanitas are mukbangs. 4,000 words later, we have the eCommerce industry’s greatest justification for human connection, and how Commerce stands to benefit.
🧵Next, read up on our prediction of the end of sellout on my Twitter thread. The cues are all there: a rise of interest in stoicism, and a nostalgia-fueled revival of punk rock. We’re working on a longer-form piece which considers the nature of spiritual revival as a reboot in culture, too. Stay tuned.
💄💅For your hot girl walks or long runs as the weather turns to Spring, listen to our interview interview with Zenith’s Ci En Lee, who launched the trends aggregation project that rocked our world back in January. 300+ trends reports in one place, and the emergence of a trends reporting industry. Which we’re covering. Which makes us trends reports report reporters.
P.S. A number of close friends of ours in eCom services at legendary developer and UI/UX agencies like Gorilla and Something Digital are without jobs as we close this week. If you are looking to hire some of the most brilliant, and hardest-working people in the industry, we can connect you. Let us know by replying to this email.
The New Tire Boot. Ford has applied for a patent on a system in which self-driving cars could drive themselves to repo lots if their owners are too far behind on car payments. The patent is still pending.
Just Say No. De-influencing is a recent TikTok trend that seems here to stay, in which Gen-Zers are telling people what they should NOT buy. Hot take: de-influencing is .... actually just influencing.
More Sights & Sounds. Salesforce is reportedly paying Matthew McConaughey $10 million a year to be their creative advisor — at the same time, the company has recently laid off 8,000 of its employees.
Beyond the Phone. UScellular is encouraging people to put down their phones, insisting that we’ve lost “US.” This new initiative, the Phones Down For 5 Challenge is encouraging people to pause the use of their devices for “5 days, 5 hours, or even just 5 minutes” to reconnect with the world outside our phones.
Deliveries Are Up. Instacart’s sales increased by 39% last year — a good look on a company eyeing an IPO. This comes after slashing internal valuation nearly 75%.
Feed me, Seymour. Recent experiments have revealed that plants may have a higher consciousness than we thought, being able to learn and even make decisions. Plants will even respond to anesthesia. (But a lot of us already knew this after we watched Little Shop of Horrors).