Helloooooo from SF nerderinos!
I'm currently chilling at the Villa with Hermione and Ben Way which is the house at the center of tonight's premier episode of the brand spanking new Bravo series, Start-Ups Silicon Valley.
How did all of this go down?
As usual there's a story. Gather round ...
So, I genuinely don't remember how Hermione and I initially connected, but she and I have been social media friends for at least a few years. (Everyone in tech knows each other - ESPECIALLY the marketing/ PR new media peeps. We're one big happy carpel tunnel ridden family.)
Either way ... I totally have a crush on her brother. It's pretty redic actually, he's just so damn adorably dreamy.
Look at that face!! Are you kidding me?!?!?!
Massive crush and serious oversight in not knowing who he was until I started seeing ads for their new show.
This past Thursday, I then tweeted Hermione asking if I could be her sister in law. ::cough cough shameless::
She of course said yes, and then Ben and I connected on Facebook and twitter.
Come to the premier, she then tweeted.
I thought about it ... and quickly realized, sure! If I can just figure out a place to crash I can figure out the rest.
I then tweeted my friends over at @lyft asking for some credits in exchange for documenting my experience.
<tangent> I'm obsessed obsessed OBSESSED with using them, btw. Every.single.driver. is so freaking rad, and always has an amazing story to tell. I'm not quite sure if it's what they put in the job description, or people that are willing to be a driver in general - but holy hell Batman, those dudes are LEGIT rockstars. </tangent>
Lyft then credited me with $50 and between that and my Greyhound bus ticket I was locked and loaded ready to go.
The ride up to SF was a bit shaky. Between the bus being PACKED and me ending up directly next to the bathroom and sitting directly in front of a rapper that for SIX hours would not shut up - I was on sensory OVERLOAD.
Smells like shit, sounds like shit. Good times, Friel! This was a GREAT idea!!
Either way, half way up I get a text from Ben letting me know that they are leaving for the premier party promptly at 6:15.
(Bravo was throwing a private, super fancy pants watching party for friends and cast members.)
You have to be here by 6:15 Ben pressed.
My bus was scheduled to arrive somewhere between 5:45 and 6 and after a quick google map search I realized making it by 6:15 was just not going to happen.
Shit, shit, shit.
My brain then went into hyper overdrive as I wished, once again, that I just had a jet pack.
DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MUCH EASIER MY LIFE WOULD BE WITH A JET PACK!?!?! COME ON!!?!?!
The driver then came on the intercom and announced that we were 30 minutes outside of San Jose.
San Jose ... San Jose ... who do I know in San Jose, I thought? Maybe if I could just get a ride from San Jose into the city it would streamline the process and be faster so I could make it before my 6:15 deadline.
I then hit up my buddy @moids and BEGGED for a ride.
(He and I met for the first time when I was speaking at the WITI conference back in June.)
Omid being the AH-MAZING human being that he is, completely agreed and 30 minutes later he met me at the San Jose greyhound station.
Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!! I shouted giving him the biggest hug upon greeting.
If I don't make it by 6:15 they're going to leave. I need to see Ben, I pressed.
Not a problem!!
We then talked about life, love, and all things not TNTML related.
Omid is a true friend, he constantly reminds me to be less of a humanoid and more of a human.
Who is the 27 year old from Connecticut, he asked in the car?
Can I speak to her and not the CEO.
I started laughing.
Thank you for the reminder, I said.
He then dropped me off at the house Ben gave me the address for.
I walk in ... and it's massive.
You guys live ... here? I asked staring at the Villa.
Great to meet you finally, I say giving Hermione a big hug.
Ben then walked out.
Swoon. He's so freaking yummy.
I was then introduced and come to find out a few of the people in the house read TNTML.
Fuck yeah, I said doling out high fives. Thanks so much for reading!!
Everyone then started taking pictures, as Ben handed me a glass of champagne.
I've been here all of 5 minutes and I not only feel completely at ease with these people but they just welcomed me into their world with open arms and a glass of champagne. No questions asked - nothing. These are good people, I thought. Really really good people.
We then got in the limos and headed over to the premier party.
Within seconds of walking in the door I ran into a bunch of social media friends.
More hugs, more high fives. I love this town, I thought!!!
Ben and all my new friends had to stay on the red carpet giving interviews, so I just mingled and worked the room as per my usual.
So many amazing conversations, and so many articulate people. To discuss the future of new media and digital advertising so intensely and philosophically was incredible.
After a few glasses of wine, Randi Zuckerberg (the show's EP and Mark's sister) then came out and introduced everyone.
The show then began.
Now, obvi, my personal interest in these people aside I was REALLY excited to see how Bravo was going to edit everything together. Per the trailer you could tell that they were more focused on their extra cirricular activities but I was genuinely curious to see how it was going to be presented.
I found Dwight, Kim, Ben, and Hermione to be presented very well and interesting in general - but Sarah Austin? Wow. Where to begin.
Sarah and I did a TV show together last year, and I actually see her face every day as I have the poster for it on the wall in my bedroom.
She and I had met at a dinner for the show, and I have seen her a bunch of times at various events - but the words that came out of her mouth made me want to absolutely vomit.
Dude, she sold her soul to the devil.
As she was getting her hair and makeup done for a party she proclaimed that it takes her 3-4 hours to get ready.
BITCH PLEASE!!!!! You are beautiful, yes, but 3-4 fucking hours?!?!?!?!!? I sat on a bus for 8 hours next to a shitter, ran a comb through my hair, did my make up in less than 10 minutes in a greyhound bus station and STILL rocked the shit out of that party.
She then continued on explaining how she gets 10K per tweet.
BITCH, PLEASE!!!!!!! To your followers? Are you fucking kidding me?!! You don't even tweet every day!!!
I've received as much as four figures for a sponsored tweet but to get the kind of cash she is talking about, you have to be a bigger deal. She grossly, grossly, grossly exaggerated.
I couldn't stop cringing. Everything that came out of her mouth made me want to slap her fucking face.
What happened to you, Sarah? Obvi we weren't good enough friends to begin with so I don't know maybe you've always been this way ... but wow. bad bad bad.
It's embarassing, and I'm embarassed that she calls herself a lifecaster. Do you even know what the fuck one is?!?! How can you call yourself a "lifecaster" when you don't even update your site every day.
COME ON SARAH!!! I want to root for you girl!!!!!!!! We need to be able to unite not tear each other apart like this.
So wrong. So. So. Wrong.
All in all, I think the show is diluted enough for middle america. I can't imagine any of my nerdy friends watching it based on the fact that all of the establishing shots of the characters included them being half naked. Intellects need to be teased, come on Bravo!! Wait til AT LEAST the second episode for that kinda thing.
Being a reality TV junkie in general, I'll definitely watch and I suggest you guys should too just to formulate your own opinion.
I can say on an extremely personal level, Ben and Hermione are UNBELIEVABLY welcoming and their group of friends are so spectacular. I am incredibly humbled they have welcomed me into their world. I give them all an ENORMOUS amount of credit as well for being brave enough to go on a show like this and be fed to the lions. They are handling themselves expertly in the press which only speaks to their character.
Now ... I gotta jet to a few more meetings but I'll be at the premier tonight. I just hope I don't bump into Sarah. That would be awwwkkkwwwwaarrrrrddd.
Team Hermione, FTW!!!
Rock on nerds and thanks again for all the love San Francisco!!!!