If you were at Spud Bros in downtown Boulder, Colo., last month, you might have seen Foundry Group co-founder Brad Feld cooking fries.
No, the venture business isn’t so bad that Feld had to take a part-time job. He was donating two hours to Spud Bros in support of the Community Foundation Serving Boulder County. The event raised $500 for the local nonprofit.
Feld didn’t get complaints from patrons, who included friends, colleagues and former business prospects, but he got plenty of heckling.
Feld says he hasn’t worked behind the counter of a restaurant since he was fired from his job at Potatoes Etc. in Dallas, Texas, when he was 15-years-old. Nearly 28 years later, he has renewed respect for anyone who has to stand on their feet all day and serve customers anything, especially food.
“I will never again get frustrated with someone on the other side of a counter from me,” he promises.
We’re just not that into your tweets
news anchor Katie Couric recently said of Twitter: “I don’t think anybody gives a rat’s ass if I am about to eat a tuna sandwich.”
We have to agree with her. And we’re a little puzzled as to why so many venture capitalists feel it is necessary to broadcast the most banal details of their lives in 140 characters or less. We scanned the tweets of 18 VCs and found them incredibly uninteresting—except for one off-color remark. See if you can find it buried below.
Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures, who is also a Twitter board member (@fredwilson): “It’s spring time in the west village. A friend suggested we blow off work and just hang out today. I was so tempted.”
Clint Chao, of Formative Ventures (@clintchao): “Cool that someone at hoops yesterday thought I was 32… uncool if he was thinking I was the slowest freakin’ 32-year-old he’s ever seen.”
Aydin Senkut of Felicis Ventures (@asenkut): “Finished a 10.5K run – ready for a nice Sunday dinner.”
Peter Fenton of Benchmark Capital, who is also a Twitter board member (@peterfenton): “Takeout ordering insight: don’t even try to pretend you know menu better than the proprietor, just ask them to surprise you with their best.”
Jim Breyer of Accel Partners (@jimihendrixlive): “Hangin in palo alto.”
David Cowan of Bessemer Venture Partners (@davidcowan): “No one shake my hand today — I’m sniffly.”
Josh Stein of Draper Fisher Jurvetson (@dfjjosh): “My four year old son (running around with mom’s rings on): ‘oooh! Look at me. I got married!’”
Bob Kagle of Benchmark (@kegs): “Having a bowl of steel cut oats @ Jamba… This stuff is Killer!!”
Ryan McIntyre of The Foundry Group (@ryan_mcintyre): “The Frog Hollow Farm peach tartlett is just insanely scrumptious.”
Todd Chaffee of Institutional Venture Partners, which is a Twitter investor (@toddchaffee): “Reading ‘Zen in the Art of Archery’ and watching movies with my kids…just what the doctor ordered!
Christine Herron of First Round Capital (@christine): “Just saw a long trailer for x-men origins. I AM VERY VERY EXCITED VERY EXCITED!
David Hornik of August Capital (@davidhornik): “Not sure using the phrase ‘I put that slide in to get your d*** hard’ is the best approach when pitching a VC. Incidentally, it did not.”
Josh Kopelman of First Round (@joshk): Hey @eBay – since you’ve sold StumbleUpon and are apparently selling Skype, any chance I can buy half.com back?”
Brad Burnham of Union Square (@bradusv): 3000 miles from home and diagnosed with pneumonia – bummer.”
Pierre Omidyar of Omidyar Network (@pierre): “Dang it, I just got passed by a Google camera car, riding my scooter, on my own block! Now I’m going to be in Google Maps. That’s not cool.”
Saar Gur of Charles River Ventures (@saarsaar): discovering how cool noise canceling headphones are….what did you say? I can’t hear you…I have my noise canceling headphones on… :-)”
Danny Rimer of Index Ventures (@dannyrimer): “What’s the difference between a mixer and a blender?”
Marc Andreessen of Andreessen Horowitz (@pmarcablog): “Watching ‘American Gangster’ and thinking about changing industries.”
‘Capital Venturist’ Holds Slim Lead
Looks like Scott Murphy can start packing up his belongings at Advantage Capital Partners. The managing director holds a tiny lead in the race to become a U.S. Congressman representing upstate New York.
It was still too close to call as of April 17, when VCJ went to press. At that time, Murphy held a lead of 178 votes over former New York State Assembly Minority Leader Jim Tedisco, who has refered to his opponent as a “capital venturist.” At last count, Murphy had 79,452 votes to Tedisco’s 79,274.
Breyer Gets More Public
We were a little surprised when Jim Breyer of Accel Partners was named to the board of computer company Dell Inc. last month. Breyer already sat on the boards of two public companies—Marvel Entertainment and Wal-Mart Stores Inc.—and seven privately held companies, including Facebook. Why would he want to join yet another one?
Says Breyer: “Michael [Dell] and I spent time together at the World Economic Forum in Davos this past January and had a series of conversations. I went back and spoke to many of our entrepreneurs and my partners. The feeling was unanimous that working with Michael and Dell would be very valuable for the portfolio companies. We strongly believe that there are still enormous opportunities in some of the platforms being created today, like social networks and cloud computing and storage. Dell, in many ways, sits at the intersection of those things.”