Hoyd Breton


How's your sunday going?

I spent all afternoon watching assless chaps at the pride parade


You could check that one off your list!

All good here. Spent the day packing some more.

Wanted to get the bulk of packing done yesterday and today so the rest of the week is chill mode.

Im a HUGE fan of throwing away shit when I move though

How's the hustle on your end?

I've been thinking a lot about our chat in NY lately

the difference between making an impact to a billion people, or working on small products that make a bigger impact to a smaller set of people

yeah. i def think there's benefit in both routes but some of the things worth thinking about when deciding is what sort of skills you want to build.

joining a bigger operation let's you get deep in your craft.

while going towards the deeper impact with less folks asks you to flex a bunch of different muscles.


I've assumed a more introspective perspective lately

I figured out that I have to be growing somehow to stay happy

i hear ya man. i think all good hustlers should have that issue.

when you're comfortable with staying still, something's up.

i think it's pretty dope when someone hits one model hard and then tries out the other model.

maybe it's a selfish perspective but I feel that at some point everything gets out of your control, so I need to focus on me first, making sure I'm growing, then the mission of whatever I'm trying to do

i hear ya, but i don't even consider that selfish

if you don't have a solid a handle on yourself, how dare you think you could improve the condition of others

I really like your approach of making tiny projects that make individuals feel better

yeah, i'm going to take that shit and push it hard and see what it yields.

super excited

Wonder if there could be an interesting / viable subscription model for this hustle.

Ooh let's talk about money!

I grew up communist so I my first instinct is to think money is kinda gross

Well I don't think money is the problem – it's the perspective that the individual has regarding it that could become a problem.

Another potential problem is what they're willing to do to get it.

I mean, that's like saying "guns don't kill people" right?

Well, yeah. Money could be this thing you want to stack out of fear of living without it. You could easily quantify the value of a life and be willing to exchange those lives for a large enough stack. Think Nestle.

But you could also think of money as the thing you need to buy a tool to +1 your craft and output.

The only way you're willing to demand that money is if you feel like you've given enough value.

I'm reading Omnivore's Dilemma right now and there are some interesting parallels.

You have conventional farming, where you're giving cows a cocktail of antibiotics which will eventually render those vital antibiotics useless in humans. Those folks don't give a fuck about the impact on the humans that are going to eat it. They just care about the $ per pound of meat they produce.

You then have farms like Polyface farms where they're extremely conscious of what they're producing and the overall impact at the end of the chain.

In both farms, they're producing the same thing – beef. But how they're producing it and their sensitivity to the grand scheme of things is night/day.

I enjoy money.

I get a sense of freedom having it.

I didn't have much money growing up and the ability to get a tool that will extend my potential is the height of happiness of using money.

For me that is.

I think using money to purchase a tool that "gives back" is as noble as it gets

And if I could use the tools to make other tools / objects to extend the potential or health of others. I think that's a beautiful cycle to participate in.

But what about luxury?

Luxury is an interesting topic. What about it?

I mean, using money not to give back but to increase your level of comfort

Like, buying the expensive pillow, instead of the pillow that "just works"

Yeah, that's interesting.

I think you have the right to use it however you wish but you're the one that's paying the price if all you're doing is chasing high / lux tier products / services all of the time.

Lux shit has a short life span – to me.

That spike of happiness is brief.

Well, this is why people want to make *lots* of me, to keep the highs high as much as possible

Yeah I don't think it's a sustainable way to do it though.

Environmentally, Psychologically

Environmentally, if all you're doing is consuming shit all of the time, you're burning through surplus resources. Most luxury items demand more resources to produce, I would say.

Psychologically, I think something is wrong with you if you need to continuously buy products or services to maintain a certain level of happiness

Trying to fill some void that consumption will never fill properly and for an extended period of time

what's the difference between the two farmers?

why do one approach over the other?

One is aware of the complexity of the elements he is dealing with and the other plays the ignorant role

Joel Salatin is farmer one, owner of Polyface Farms.

He respects the things he works with. At the most obvious level, cows are supposed to eat grass. So he gives them grass.

The other example, forces corn and a cocktail of grimey shit to the cows, although cows have trouble eating corn.

I think it just requires a respect for the things that you work for and working with them.

I imagine the less humane approach is less expensive than the alternative?

Well it depends where in the ledger are you stopping.

If you stop at the point of the supermarket. The second approach is more profitable. If you stop at the point of the human consuming it and the environment that she's living in, that second approach is way more expensive.

Where you stop in the ledger depends on your moral compass.

Wanna hear my theory?

Of course!

Drop it!

I think we value "freedom" more than anything... more than progress or "rightfulness"

and like you said earlier, money = freedom at some extent

so, we have a culture that promotes the freedom to choose what to do with your time

in the very short term

so every decision is optimized for that

This is why Walmart is Walmart

companies like that take shortcuts to give people the "freedom" (aka money) they want/need to be happy

i agree but this is only possible through asymmetry of knowledge.

so nestle might produce a microwavable dinner with a combination of known carcinogens and peddles it to the walmart distribution chain and people gobble it up.

nestle knows the harm / the gobblers are most likely unaware of it

shit is asymmetrical

when both sides have the knowledge, there's less room for those dark tricks

Is it though? Everyone knows children make Nike shoes and Apple's manufacturing conditions

That's a good point but how visible / aware are we of it? Their marketing dollars and PR magic makes sure that when we think of those companies, we have the aspiration in mind, not the cost.

I definitely don't have the ultimate answer to any of this but I believe if we were more aware of the harm done by buying product X – we would do it less often.

Proximity to the issue plays a big role.



Right — everything seems so distant! Physically and chronologically

"Sure feeding corn to cows can fuck up the planet but do I really think about that *now* when I just want a burger??"


Even the burger to cow connection seems super distant.

Definitely. I think the farmers are just not incentivized to create that awareness

Capitalism is completely devoid of a moral compass

Sure, but the companies that do not due seize on how their process is "different" get to charge a bit more.

I don't necessarily agree that capitalism i completely devoid of a moral compass.

I think you could use the system to do good and live comfortably.

yeah but the system itself doesn't promote "good"

it just promotes "more"


i wish there was a national program where everyone has to travel to a culture that's counter to the one that they're comfortable in.

when you meet the people that you build stories against, you realize how much pointless anger is pointed towards them.

and perhaps makes you more sensitive when the enterprise you have in mind causes harm to them or anyone else.

even Marx's "alienation of labor" speaks to the abstraction of our participation in the chain of harm

you participate in this grand machinery of harm but you're isolated in this tiny sliver of it and can't see the rest

ahhhh, getting kinda sad for sunday evening.

hahaha and this is why we don't think about it

totally, but it's our responsibility to invite it here and there.

shit is hard but we have to be sensitive to everything around us and stay positive.

push out the positivity one tiny project at a time

anyway, going to step away from the comp and ch-ch-chillllllllllllllll

thanks for the good thoughts man

haha alright dude

thanks for the hangs!

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Hoyd Breton


Hoyd is a morning person ☀️. He’s also a consulting product designer, currently at Spotify. When not consulting, he’s working with wood and his recent Kickstarter.

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