Reality Marble & Good Monsters
If you’re reading this, I like you, and you’re subscribed to my personal newsletter. Thank you so much for reading. I have some updates for you. First, as a reminder, I’m Brian Gold, former brand & product strategist for companies like Nintendo, Gentle Monster, Microsoft, Blizzard, Samsung, DC Comics, 72andSunny, Deutsch, R/GA, and Complex.
I want to help people understand how to make life more fun & beautiful, the world a better one for living in, and give reason, rhyme, and meaning to life. I just got back from a much-needed, month-long stay in Barcelona, Spain. I also hopped around Amsterdam, Costa Brava, and Madrid.
It was my first Euro-Trip, and suffice to say, I got baptized.
Why Barcelona? In short: The works of Gaudi, an incredibly creative community, a city designed for people (not cars & movie stars), protected bike lanes, the mediterranean sea, beautiful parks, incredible works of art, history, and organic architecture that seem to have been born, like trees and flowers by the road, singing themselves into being as sacred monuments to the musical that is life.
I’m writing to you from my substack so that I can correspond regularly with my readers. All of you are future and present friends. Former co-workers, or serendipitously found me through Linkedin or Twitter. This will be my preferred form of social media, and I miss connecting with you all. So please email or DM me to let me know how you’re doing, truly, and if you want to talk about anything at all.
On to the updates!
Reality Marble 2021
“ We are wandering between two worlds, one dead, the other unable to be born.” — Matthew Arnold.
I started Reality Marble at the beginning of 2020 because I was becoming disillusioned by incumbent agencies, brands, and consultancies that I was working for. None of these so-called experts saw the significance of world-building, IP, the creator economy, crypto, the shift in cultural capital, decentralization, ad fraud, video games, anime, niche communities, digital goods and the empowered individual. Like the time my finance professor told me bitcoin was probably nothing. Fast forward to today, and bitcoin is the single best performing asset in the last decade.
All truth passes through three stages. First, it’s ridiculed. Second, it’s violently opposed. Third it’s accepted as self-evident. — Arthur Schopenhauer
Read the literature, but don’t read too much of it. Read a bit to notice something that everybody is doing wrong. Something that just doesn’t feel right. Read enough to develop your intuitions, and then trust your intuitions. Don’t be too worried if everybody says it’s nonsense. But there is one thing…If you think it is a really good idea, and other people tell you it’s COMPLETE NONSENSE. Then you are really onto something. — Deep Learning AI Pioneer, Geoffrey Hinton
My critique is not the people who work within these companies but the top-down, bureaucratic systems that prioritize process over people. It blinds them to change and binds them to the status quo. In the wake of the pandemic, and the subsequent events after that, my distrust extended to our existing institutions, authority, and power structures. The keepers of this dying world know their sense of reality is terribly wrong, and everyone is too disoriented or distracted to figure out just exactly how.
Think about the following thread below.
Some of you have probably heard of a ‘Reality Distortion Field’. A term from Star Trek to describe the charisma of Steve Jobs, and his ability to convince others around him of almost anything. A reality marble works to weave together a coherent understanding of the world in relation to one’s inner mind. While distortion tears at the fabric of reality, a reality marble is in material harmony with those enveloped by it. That is what I hope to provide you with each blog post. Truth, value, meaning, and beauty. You can choose to serve truth and justice or power and privilege. Admittedly, my content output has been anemic as I’ve been busy paying attention to literally everything (trying to digest these catatonic events over the last year or so). StarCraft Earth is the beginning of something new, but I thought you should know that I’m planning on using this blog to sketch out grand narratives that tackle this complexity. I also love writing the footnotes. Context is king in my world.
Good Monsters Inc.
Good Monsters is a research, strategy, design, and investment firm.
We’re going to study the most powerful ideas, people, organizations, institutions, networks, communities, policies, cities, cultures, and technologies that have arisen to date. The purpose of this work is to bring forth new insights, deep narratives, frameworks, and mental models that enable individuals to adapt to the most significant technocultural transformation of our time. Tyler Cowen calls this progress studies. It’s like that line from Dune. “Bridging the past and future to bring forth a mind that can lead us to a better future.”It’s a major act of synthesis.
At present we are surrounded by economic systems that are designed by others long ago to fulfill their own ambitions without any regard to future generations. As a result, these institutions have become short-sighted monstrosities. Systems of command and control extract rents for being alive. Rent for land. Rent for money in the form of interest. With the internet, amateurs, creativity, and Web3, we can finally exit the system and build a better world, but it must be tempered with context. It must be explained well. I’m deeply inspired by the following quote.
To be confused about what is different is to be confused about everything. Thus, it is not an accident that our fragmentary form of thought is leading to such a widespread range of crisis, social, political, economic, ecological, psychological, in the individual and in society as a whole. . . . To develop new insights into fragmentation and wholeness requires a creative work even more difficult than that needed to make fundamental new discoveries in science, or great and original works of art. Suddenly, in a flash of understanding one may see the irrelevance of one’s whole way of thinking . . . along with a different approach in which all the elements fit in a new order and in a new structure.
— David Bohm
That’s all for now.