Chimpanzees In Shoes: Or Why This Job Is So Easy…

Herbert A. Simon

“I think those who object to my characterizing man as simple want somehow to retain a deep mystery at his core.” – Herbert A. Simon, Born Jun. 15, 1916.⁣

You are a chimpanzee in shoes.⁣

Your “self” is a hallucination being had by a computer made of meat.⁣

Civilization is a byproduct of the fact that we have a lot of leisure time since we are perfectly evolved to dominate this planet.⁣

I think understanding and accepting all of this is key to becoming really good at influence and persuasion.⁣

If you think humans are special and individuals are unique and all that crap, convincing people is super hard and intimidating. ⁣

But a bunch of apes thinking they are better than other animals? That's easy to exploit. We imagine ourselves as sophisticated, but our lives are still about eating and fucking, primarily. ⁣

And if you can connect your own plans to fulfilling those goals for people, other people will eagerly help you achieve YOUR goals.⁣

The major perpetual and infinite money making niches – health, beauty, wealth, fitness – that's almost all about reproduction and survival. Not necessarily directly. But underneath everything else, that's what's really at play.⁣


The civilian population does NOT like having that pointed out to them. You must let the marks and prospects preserve their sense of mystery and sophistication.⁣

Pander to them. They are pretty because of aesthetic ideals. They are fit because of challenging the self for personal betterment. They are pursuing wealth so they can be comfortable and secure in their lifestyle and status.⁣

Not because they are apes who have mastered not starving in the dirt, so we obsess over the superficial.⁣

No, not that.⁣

But for we marketing folks, our job is to make promises to comfortable monkeys – promises of ease and excitement and entertainment. ⁣

All we need is their money. Which most apes are happy to part with because they don't even really understand what money even is. But bananas are delicious, booties are desirable, and being able to be the boss and bully your inferiors is what everyone really wants deep down.⁣

Man is simple. It's no mystery.

2 thoughts on “Chimpanzees In Shoes: Or Why This Job Is So Easy…”

  1. If you’re not on Colin’s email list, you need to get on it ASAP and wait until this post comes around again. His lagniappe on this email (and only available in the email) is the best analogy of the human mind I’ve ever heard with respect to persuasion.

  2. Even though dated the 19th, I read it on Father's day and so glad I did.

    Happy Father's Day, my favorite ape computer meat teacher with shoes.

    Thanks for everything.

    Your lessons are legit helpful.

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