Jacob Haller (jwgh) wrote,
Jacob Haller

Internet startup stories

I worked at an Internet startup in Manhattan from late February 1997 through mid-May 1999. I remember going to the company Christmas party in 1998. My friend and then-coworker and housemate Craig also came along, and he had invited his friend Deb. My hope at the time was that I would see someone get into a fight with one of the company's founders, but it didn't happen.

It was an interesting time anyway, though. At one point a gentleman came up to the bar by Craig, pulled out a cigar and started to unroll it. Turning to Craig, he explained that he had a bunch of hash and wasn't sure if he should put the whole batch in the cigar or if he should only put half in and save the rest for later. Craig did not feel qualified to offer an opinion on the matter.

Later, I was in the back room chatting with Deb when the same guy came over and started chatting with us (and, of course, hitting on Deb). He explained that he was the head of IT at another Internet startup and that his hiring strategy was to hire interns out of college who would work really hard and burn themselves out for really cheap. He then offered me his business card and asked me to call him if I ever was looking for a job.

He was quite loaded and friendly and amusing in that highly loaded kind of way. After chatting with us for some time he finally announced, Well, I'm going to go smoke a lot of grass now. I'll see you around. It was nice to meet you, ... and here he quite blatantly completely forgot Deb's last name. There was a pause, and Deb said, Deb. Ah, right, man, is my face red? he said.

Now, the thing was, Deb and I were standing with our backs to one of the venue's exits, and he was facing us and was lit mainly by the emergency exit sign, so his face was, in fact, quite red. So Deb and I both stared at his face for a moment, and then as one turned and looked up at the exit sign. This was followed by laughter.

I don't think the guy really understood what was going on, exactly, but he seemed to recognize that the laughter wasn't meant maliciously, extricated him from the situation as gracefully as he could, and went off, I assume, to consume vast quantities of the DEMON WEED.

So, basically, a good time was had by all. The end!
Tags: ew, work hell

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