If you live in a western urban environs you’ve seen lots of bicycles of the ilk displayed below:
The single speed, fixed gear, mono color racer with white wall tires. Very hip, very now. But why?
It’s classic one downsmanship. In a world where people strive to have more, where increasing wealth has given many of us everything, the trend of tomorrow is diametrically opposed. The more of tomorrow, isn’t stuff, or consumption, rather experience, artistry and simplicity – the luxury of a stripped back existence. We often see these trends early in what may be considered the trivial, like bicycles. The trend will run much deeper than this.
Leading edge urbanites riding such bicycles (they are too cool for me) are showing the world they are more, but publicly displaying they can live with less. It’s a classic display of confidence. By wanting less, they are showing the world that they are more. Conspicuous consumption has been a preferred method for people displaying self worth for most of the Post world war 2 era. But I really think that this is another example we’ve turned the corner.
The question for entrepreneurs is this: What category or business is waiting to be striped back by you?
Tonight I went to see Christan Lander the super funny author of popular blog, now book ‘stuff white people like’ talk at local bookstore Readings in Melbourne. Firstly, he is a such a perceptive and funny guy, he deserves all the success his meteoric rise has given. Secondly, I was a little like a teenage school girl when I met him after the show (this will make sense when you watch the video below)
The power of doing
Tonight Christian spoke about how the whole thing happened. You may not know but the blog was launched in January 2008 and was a book only 6 months later, with a reported advance of $300,000 from publisher random house.
No – doing.
He had the idea, and didn’t stew on it, tell friends and think about it. He did. He wrote and couldn’t stop putting all his ideas down for days on end. He said he wrote 24 entries in the first sitting and published them straight away. No editing, no moderating. Just doing. After that he shared it with all his friends (granted this thing was bound to go viral because it was remarkably funny and observant). Christian’s success happened because he did it. He seized the opportunity to make it happen. He went beyond idea.
Now for the star struck teenager (aka Steve Sammartino)
After the official stuff I had a chat with Christian and was so excited didn’t really let him speak. Instead I just went about proving how white I was…. sorry, I was very star struck and was feeling some ‘Bromance’ for him (I wonder if that is a blog entry yet on Stuff white people like?)