Start-Ups Silicon Valley: In Which Our Recapper Inadvertently Makes His Bravo Debut

"My favorite subject was going to be on . . . me!"
 Start Ups Silicon Valley: In Which Our Recapper Inadvertently Makes His Bravo Debut


Dear 20 or so religious recap followers,

You probably noticed that I took last week’s episode off. I could give you a list of reasons: it was really busy at work, I was trying to wind down for Thanksgiving, and catching the West Coast feed starting at 10 p.m. Pacific is a bitch. But ultimately, I just didn’t feel like watching it. The first two episodes left me narcoleptic and an unopened Xbox game seemed like more fun.

But Nitasha, Betabeat’s editor, convinced me to give it one last try. Well, I’m glad I did. I managed to stay awake for the entire episode! And it was definitely the most authentic of the season. It may have helped that I was getting texts from Gabe Rivera, founder of the famous tech news aggregator Techmeme, that my startup and I made an appearance in this week’s show. (Gabe was in NYC at the time and claims that he was just “flipping” through the channels). My favorite subject was going to be on . . . me!

Recap: This week opened up with Hermione kickboxing with her trainer pretending the punching bag was Sarah’s face. Ben does some crunches. Kim goes to hottie Dwight for advice on quitting her job (Sorry, but Jay is still cuter). Sarah brags. Kim quits. Kim cries. Kim drinks some wine. Ben and Hermione get rejected by another VC. Kim parties. David, Ben, and Hermione head to a tech party. Hermione freaks. Hermione cries. Hermione drinks. Hermione throws a drink. Wrap!

How Real? Once again, I’ll generously start them off at 100% real Silicon Valley. Last time I tried this, the show scored a miserable 10% (blame Sarah Austin.)

“Minimum Viable Product” +20%

Kim, the former NBA cheerleader, mentions to Dwight that she wants to quit her cushy job at Ampush and launch her own startup to initially build a “minimum viable product”. Mind blown. This is real techy, product management shit! Product managers refer to it as “MVP,” which loosely translates to building products with a limited features set in order to get traction and meaningful feedback from early adopters. So either Kim (1) has actually spent some time on product launches or (2) she reads way too much TechCrunch. Either way, respect.

Sarah Austin -50%

Ladies and gentleman, we have our Snooki. Sarah is still very tanned and still kind of a dumdum, but it’s pretty innocuous. She does these video interviews–sorry, lifecasts–with somewhat famous startup CEOs in a real folksy-how-do-I-turn-my-iPhone-on kinda way. It worked! I’m convinced she knows nothing about startups and tech! Then she goes and says, “I’m one of the original bloggers of Silicon Valley.” I think what Sarah meant was that she had a Blogger account and owned a Flip camera in 2007? I mean, c’mon, the Valley gave birth to tech blogging greats like Michael Arrington, MG “Fucking!” Siegler, Rip Emerson, and many others. She caps it off by proclaiming that she’s the White Oprah of the Valley. I better just move on before I bang my head into my brand new iPad mini. #humblebrag

Dwight’s Apartment +20%

This brogrammer lives in a pigsty. There’s like dirty sandals, unwashed dishes, probably a used condom all just laying about his one bedroom apartment. Later it comes out that Dwight lives in Sunnyvale, which is effectively BFE to the San Francisco tech set. But it is about half the price to rent there and it’s easier to tap older engineering talent that are likely to stick around. For a first time entrepreneur? Legit.

Kim’s $1M in Equity -15%

Someone’s been told a lie here. There’s no way in hell she’s walking away from $1 million in shares. I have no insights into their cap table or funding line, but unless she owns like 30% of the company, it doesn’t add, especially given the space that Ampush Media is in. At last count there’s like 4,000,000 of these Facebook ad optimization companies running amok in the Valley with little liquidation options on the horizon for these guys. Sorry, Kim. You’re still cute though!

Quoting Steve Jobs (Kim) -5%

Kim finally quits her job and gathers some friends to celebrate at popular SF club Harlot. Looking pretty inebriated, she mutters to Dwight how happy she’s leaving do her own thing because, “She’s been wasting her time living someone else’s life.” Shaking my head…it’s a Steve Jobs quote from a commencement address that he delivered at Stanford in 2005. Girl, that’s just tacky.

My Debut +40%

You’ve had to endure three episodes to finally (finally!) see yours truly in a scene. I was working the door at a huge networking party that I threw during Apple’s WWDC. I don’t want to brag, but I fucking killed it. Totally legitimized the show over night. However, I instructed them not to shoot me from my right side. I will be talking to Randi Zuckerberg about that.

Appcelerator +10%

This is the amazing mobile startup that I work at. Total legit! Buy some of their software? #GratuitousPlug #AlwaysBeHustlin’


For episode 4, we get a record-setting final score of 120% real Silicon Valley! Granted it was mostly buoyed by the appearance of my awesome startup, my CEO (Jeff Haynie), and myself. But I think it’s a sign of good things to come. In all seriousness, I think the folks in the Valley should be rooting for the show to be a hit. If it isn’t, this will likely be the last startup show for a mainstream audience that you will see greenlit for a while. And that’s a loss for all of us that call this wonderful place our home. [Ed note: Sorry, Best Coasters, it looks like New York is already on the hook for sloppy seconds.]