I made this with a friend

It feels kind of like a Nike ad to me.





48 responses to “I made this with a friend”

  1. Chris Oliver Avatar

    This video is absolutely perfect timing for some of the big decisions I’m making in my life right now. Always an inspiration Julien.

  2. Odinaka Anigbogu (Oddie) Avatar
    Odinaka Anigbogu (Oddie)

    This is really cool julien. Awesome!

  3. James Avatar

    So it’s totally raining as I watched your video!

    I’m sure you’ve seen it, but if you haven’t, this sh*t will blow your mind


    Has a lot to do with what you were saying. I’m eager to see what happens from it.

  4. ash Avatar

    or a starbucks ad…just joking kinda. great stuff.

  5. mars dorian Avatar

    haha, MC Julien is in da house. Where are the beats, man ?

  6. jkh Avatar

    Did starbucks pay you to hold that cup?

    1. Julien Avatar

      I think you’re kidding, but I’m not sure, so I’ll answer this. No, of course not.

      1. Michael Avatar

        They should have. Maybe they would. Fits perfectly with their brand, talking version of the cup quotes from years ago. Love the ideas. Great camera work. How much shot to get this?

        1. Julien Avatar

          About two hours. But tons of pseudo prepared material.

  7. Amanda Avatar

    Thank you! My favorite part was the saying about exerting your force on the universe. Very powerful.

  8. Gin Avatar

    ohh Starbucks ad

  9. Momekh Avatar

    Cool message. Rings true(er) with me obviously.

    I am putting together a podcast/radio-show (as you know :))… and I am making videos (trying to tell stories). The Interwebs provides an opportunity that we still can not comprehend. There’s nothing to gauge it against.

    P.S. Video is especially hard. Great to see you in action man. Hoping to see more ‘messages’ from you like this one.

  10. verna Avatar

    Oboy, us old people have to speak to someone younger to get new ideas. We don’t change, and we don’t want to even if we need to.
    Second, you look like the prototypical college student. When Dad took me to college he said ” oh, everyone is wearing the uniform, long hair and denim.” For your age, it is piercings, tattoos and the ubiquitous giant holes in your ears. You people never think of what happens when your ears tear through. What happens when my kids want to cover their tender skin with indelible ink.
    Also, No one goes anywhere without the phone or a drink, preferably one with a logo. Yeesh. You think you are so original and you stand in front of a defaced building with your defaced ears, and spout the usual anthem of th e young, which is Change, Now! It’s not a bad thing, it’s just not new or original.
    Put down that f-ing starbucks and say something we can listen to without retching. I know you can. You usually do. And, if it were Nike, you would have shown the sneakers.

    1. Michael Avatar

      Is the building defaced? I don’t think so. I think it’s augmented by the community. Like a lot of things. Online and off.

    2. Michael Avatar

      Is the building defaced? I don’t think so. I think it’s augmented by the community. Like many things. Online and off.

    3. John Avatar


  11. Matt Horwitz Avatar

    Good shit Julien!

    I don’t think most understand the ramifications of the rapid, exponential growth of information technology & new media publishing.

    Things are changing so fast, and in such cool ways – I’m thrilled to be alive right now!!

  12. Dave Avatar

    this just changed my world. thanks man.

  13. Dave Avatar

    I am “that thing I’m excited about right now!” Hell yes!

  14. Carole Pivarnik Avatar

    I enjoy your attitude, blog, and messages. You come across well on video…you should do more short ones like this. Also, you have far too many clothes on to mistake this for a Nike ad. 😛

    An aside: The thought of a billion more people is frankly terrifying…which billion will be the straw that broke the Earth’s back? We wouldn’t have so many problems to solve now and in the future if the global population weren’t expanding at the rate it is.

  15. Lisa Avatar

    Great video! 😀 Some very inspirational words! Looking forward to more messages 🙂
    Now my 2 cents:
    I just don’t agree with the part about there not being a ‘you’ Sure it’s true in a global sense, but you have to think of ‘you’ to actually define yourself. Think of ‘you’ and work with that to never fall under the pressure. Then you can work with others to make change. Everything starts with ‘you’ or else insividual people could never change others or the rest of the world.

    Ok. Once again: great video!

  16. Stephen P Smith Avatar

    Wow, verna is certainly angry. About something. Good vid, Julien, I love how you are able to express your thoughts and give them a spin, so we get a different perspective.

  17. Kimberly Avatar

    I’m just saying you could get Starbucks to pay you so they can run that ad on their little commercial thingy when you log in from a Starbucks…and thanks for the beautiful messages in the video! xo!

  18. Ben Fury Avatar
    Ben Fury

    00:08 Julien Smith, ” …a million more people on the internet in something like the next 20 years …”

    Only a million… really?

    00:22 Julien Smith, “… add a billion more people…”

    A Billion?!? Well which is it???

    1:41 Julien Smith, “W. Edwards Deming said, “Trust in God, all others bring data.” * see footnote *

    Deming did? Where? When?

    02:38 Julien Smith, “… a billion more people can solve a billion more problems…”

    Oh… a billllllion. Why didn’t you say so in the first place?

    “Defects are not free. Somebody makes them, and gets paid for making them.”
    W. Edwards Deming – Out Of The Crisis (1982, pg. 11)

    With a billion more people, we have the possibility of a billion more people disseminating inaccurate information… but of course there will also be a billion more people catching their mistakes!

    Or is that a million people? Hmmmmmm… 😉

    Wrong numbers… badly sourced quotes… the future’s going to be exciting!! LOL

    Be well,
    Ben Fury

    “In God we trust; all others must bring data.” (Trevor Hastie, Robert Tibshirani, and Jerome Friedman, co-authors of The Elements of Statistical Learning in their Preface to the Second Edition have a footnote which reads: “On the Web, this quote has been widely attributed to both Deming and Robert W. Hayden; however Professor Hayden told us that he can claim no credit for this quote, and ironically we could find no ‘data’ confirming Deming actually said this.”) – The quote in The Elements of Statistical Learning actually reads “In God we trust, all others bring data.”

    1. Julien Avatar

      Yeah I caught all that later. Hey, I’m still more accurate than Wikipedia. 😉

      1. Ben Fury Avatar
        Ben Fury

        Don’t get me started on the “accuracy” of Wikipedia. I’ve seen people with accurate info get shouted down by the loud mooing of the Wikipedia herd before. It’s only A source and one to be checked against with other hopefully more accurate sources.

        And that’s the real wonder of the Web. New ideas CAN get heard above the herd!

        I grew up on the evil OLLDDDDD media. National magazines, national TV, national journals… and when you wanted to fact check you had to go to the big library and check the herd info against other herd info you had to pull up on microfiche. Microfiche was eeeeeeeeeevilllllll! And once you finally found a maybe accurate factoid after spinning the microfiche back and forth and back and forth, you got to pay the university 25 cents a page to print it for you and God help you if you lost that Xerox!

        The Web has changed all that. Ideas are whirling about and bouncing off each other and spawning bizarre bastard children that then start new ideas and… it’s a whole new world of wonders and delights and evil and devils all wrapped up in one massive pulsating pattern of electrons.

        I’m endlessly fascinated and wondering… what happens next?

        Be well,
        Ben Fury

    2. Stu McLaren Avatar

      @Ben – You can choose to nitpick or you can choose to open yourself to the broader message.

      Just saying.

  19. Usman Avatar

    The way you speak is super cool 🙂 Nice to have a video with all the great writing you do! You definitely need to do video blogs on a regular basis!

  20. Kalvyn Evans Avatar
    Kalvyn Evans

    I was with it until he said “There is no you. You can’t afford to be an individual anymore.” I totally disagree with that.

  21. Sherman Rockwell Avatar
    Sherman Rockwell

    I am so happy to have regular posts from you again. Your stuff that inspires me. My life required me to leave about the same time you did. I’m coming back. Glad you’re here to help.

    And, I agree with Usman, win I read your blogs I hear my interpretation of your passion. To see it, is amazing!

  22. Brett Henley Avatar

    I’m in + I’d add – don’t identify with form, only movement/action.

    Fantastic stuff.

    If anything, the growth of the Internet requires us to be even more agile than we are open and relationship-driven.

    And to the haters – relax. If that cup of coffee is all you see … then I’d be more worried about being left out than left behind.

    Thanks for the pants kick.

  23. Zil Avatar

    Great Post Julien!


  24. JKinLBC Avatar

    what’s up with the Starbucks product placement??

  25. La Toya Avatar
    La Toya

    Thanks Julien,the video was inspirational especially the part about exerting your will on the universe.I’m a true believer in this.

  26. Jim Avatar

    Not like a Nike ad, but more like a ad for Starbucks. The waving of the cup undercuts the message. The rest of the video, the pacing, the cuts, the background, is great.

  27. Harold Coat Hanger Avatar
    Harold Coat Hanger

    The coffee cup doesn’t just’undercut’ the message, it positively MASSACRES it! It’s not just an accidental piece of product placement either, I am sure Julien will agree there are no such thing as accidents – all the while he speaks saying virtually nothing on a caffeine jag, ‘like wow there’s going to be a lot more people on the internet in future’ (so wired he gets his billions mixed up with his millions), the coffee cup holds its own dialogue, one of corporate greed, global recession, conflicts and starvation. This might be an exciting time to live in LA or California drugged up on coffee, but try telling that to someone in Syria, Greece or the Sudan right now.’We’ are on the precipice of something truly terrible my friend….I would have preferred the 50’s myself.

    1. Darren Avatar

      It is a shame that you feel the whole context of the message was massacred by the coffee cup. If you truly believe that it was an intentional accident than you are possibly new to Juliens work (or perhaps I am just naive).

      Cynicism and scarcity mentally are two of the biggest evils we face but are understandable reflex reactions to recent economic conditions. The coffee cup may stand for corporate greed, conflict and starvation for some people but these have always existed.

      I believe you have come down the wrong side of Juliens point (by focussing on the coffee cup and not the message)… we are now in a time where the rules have changed – corporations don’t hold the power simply by virtue of their size, years of oppression can be overcome (as per middle east uprisings) without external intervention (which never works), more people can work together to solve the issues around the world. I think he is suggesting that we are best placed to tackle the issues that have existed since civilisation.

      I wonder if those living in Egypt, Syria, Bahrain etc in 10 years time would choose to go back to the 50’s? I can make no comment about their lives sitting in my western sanctuary but this is their uprising brought about by the themes that you may have missed in the video.

      You are probably right though – it is a self fulfilling prophecy – if we collectively choose to invest energy in being negative, cynical and helpless then we will reach the “terrible” place you predict. My hope is that through the power of what Julien talks about we harness the positive forces in the world to bring about change that is good for everyone.

  28. Stu McLaren Avatar

    Personally I liked the video – it was a shift from the regular post and had a number of great points.

    What I found disappointing were some of the reactions.

    Example: The focus on the Starbucks cup.

    Seriously people? That’s what you’re going to focus on?

    Example: Ben Fury (above) nit picking about every fact Julien shared.

    Again, what’s the point? Sure, facts are important but in the context of this video I don’t think Julien was looking to be an encyclopedia of facts – he was looking to convey an overarching message.

    My question for everyone was did you get that message or were you too focused on nitpicking?

    1. Gary B Avatar
      Gary B

      I guess I was too busy listening to the message – didn’t even notice the cup!

    2. gervias Avatar

      I have to say that I’m a bit disappointed that nobody has mentioned the distinctly disturbing Brave-New-World/Stalinist overtones of the middle section.

      To whom precisely are we to hand over the cognitive autonomy we can no longer afford? Subsume ourselves in the primordial matrix ooze of the internet? To the newly spawned pro-blogging demi-gods of the cult of personality?

      I guess my question is:

      If the crowd is the lake, and you are the rain, who is the cloud from which you fall?

  29. Ross Avatar

    *Watches video, goes to make snarky comment about starbucks and gets disapointed when he realises he’s waaay too late for that*

    Good video, lots of little tidbits into the mind of Julien. It was fun to watch.

    Also, other than your icon, this was the first time I’ve seen a decent picture/video of you. So it was nice to put a face to all the stuff I’ve read from you.

  30. Michele Welch Avatar

    “You have to exert your will on the Universe, or it will exert its pressure on you” – love that Julien!!

    I agree… it’s no longer about ME but about WE. One unit, one Source, one community, all working towards common goals.

    It’s not so radical when you think of it. Working as communities as oppose just for the Self was prevalent with indigenous communities.

    I think I am beginning to see more and more people, such as yourself, evolve and beginning to see that bringing back this paradigm of collaboration and community as the key to happiness, success, and fulfillment.

    Awesome video Julien… really!!

  31. RJ Watson Avatar
    RJ Watson

    Feels kind of like the next gen of “Coffee Achiever” ads to me…which is a good thing.

  32. cipo Avatar

    surely you meant a billion more people in the beginning of the video

    1. Julien Avatar

      Yes. Correction to be made soon.

  33. Gypsy Avatar


  34. Ken Avatar

    I think it’s not the universe which is overwhelming. It’s the world and the people in it. Which is not supposed to be. Anyway, great post, Julien. I re-posted this video to my (other) blog. Of course, with a link back here. I hope it’s ok.

  35. Maša Avatar

    Slightly off-topic: it’s interesting to see and hear you after (only) reading your words. Also, thank you for writing The Flinch! It helped me a lot with facing “intimidating” social interactions and making some career choices.

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