Discover more from Declarative Statements
w.169 | AngelList Deals, Reflections on The Wing, ACT Scores Drop Big Time, Selfies
It’s been an intense week of social interactions with NYC Tech Week (shout out to Andrew Rea and team for pulling this off; super impressive) and Emerging Fund Manager Summit (an amazing event from the Equal Ventures team).
The best conversation I was privy to? Here goes:
Her: I’m stuck in a difficult middle ground - I have too much Asperger’s for Mean Girls but not enough for Peter Thiel.
Him: That’s good self awareness though.
Her: Yeah, eh, I guess.
It’s harder for me to write without sufficient uninterrupted time, but I’ve been thinking a lot about edutainment that works and Citizenship 2.0. (separate topics, to be clear). What are those things, you wonder? Stay tuned.
Good Reads: Sensible Investing
Good Reads: Startup Stuff and Trends
Weekly Song: Perpetuum Mobile by Penguin Cafe Orchestra
Good Reads: Sensible Investing
The Fed’s Next Crisis Is Brewing in US Treasuries in Bloomberg here. The perpetual motion of the day-to-day makes easy to forget about the macro-economic environment.
A Word of Caution to AngelList LPs from Peter Livingston. He explains why 60% of deals on AngelList have Tier 1 investors as co-investors but they are usually the losers in the portfolio and underperform.
Be Skeptical of Internet Hippies Boosting Generative-AI-Blockchain-Metaverse-on-Demand-Self-Driving Companies. Another good Sam Lessin piece. On Twitter here.
The Mechanics of Unbundling Part IV - The Framework and Predictions: A Deep Dive Into how Horizontal Platforms Truly Become Unbundled.
Good Reads: Startup stuff and trends
An Early Investor’s Postmortem of The Wing by Charlie O’Donnell. This take is open and honest. It includes things like:
I don’t think Audrey was particularly well supported by her high-profile board members. A great board member helps you catch your blind spots.
Chatting about the price of your NFT doesn’t make you a community
In the end, The Wing had no one left in a leadership role who was going to stand up for the company. (Said another way, don’t fire the founder if at all possible)
Sci-fi Author Neal Stephenson Wants to Build a Metaverse Open to All. It’s called Lamina1. Looking forward to see how it progresses.
Two-thirds of American teens use the app, and 1 in 6 say they watch it “almost constantly,” a Pew Research Center survey in August found
Usage of Facebook among the same group has been cut in half since 2015
ACT Test Scores Drop to Lowest in 30 years. This is terrible news; even if tests are imperfect, test scores do matter. Highlights:
42% of students taking the ACT met NONE of the "College Readiness Benchmarks"
National Report Card data shows 66% of 4th graders don't have basic reading skills.
Selfie and Song of the Week: Perpetuum Mobile
Music video here.
Perpetuum Mobile translates literally into perpetual motion. The term is used in music as describing entire musical compositions or passages within them that are characterized by a continuous stream of notes.
I like walking through New York on the way to a meeting listening to the Perpetuum Mobile by The Penguin Cafe. It has that sort of even-keel intensity that is fitting of the city. Things are always happening and while you are here you are swept up into the motion of the city that propels you forward.
No lyrics needed.
My friend Nick Gray shared great advice on improving personal newsletters this week. His first piece of advice is “if you're the newsletter author and the emails are sent from you, include a selfie in the body of the email.” Nick has accused me in the past of playing it too cool. So I’m taking him up on his challenge (at least for four weeks).
For Week One, my selfie is me and my dear friend Bianca, who was in town. We’ve been friends for over seven years through the ups and downs of building careers in the innovation economy and building the personal life that smart, independent women of our age aspire to. She’s killing it as a venture investor in Brazil, but selfishly I miss her in NYC :)
I have a bottle of unopened Cachaça siting on my counter waiting for your return, friend.
Thanks for reading, friends. Please always be in touch.