SFDI gets it crackin’ like a bad back.
Week 5 was back to back to back to back events and I’m still feeling it. I got 12 hours of sleep last night and didn’t do anything terribly exciting last weekend. That’s how nutty it was, but it was also super epic and probably my favorite week so far!
Monday was awesome. I got to go with Max & Olivia to the Keiretsu Forum dinner before their big event on Tuesday. Dinner was good and fine, but the real magic happened on the FERRY RIDE across the bay.
The wind was in my hair, the stars were in my eyes, I even vomited in my mouth and swallowed it! Nobody thought the boat ride was magical but me. I was going freaking ape. Tourist and proud.
At dinner, I sat next to a guy named Roger who was in his mid 80’s but is still a ‘serial entrepreneur.’ If I had a dollar for every time I heard that term, I would be a serial entrepreneur. Regardless, he was super kind, had some great ideas, and definitely had world’s of experience. He also wanted some social media tips, which I am more than willing to deal out : ). He gave me the advice of making rich, old friends (hahaha). Sounds good to me!
I didn’t have to time to eat my dinner before the ferry ride back so I got a to-go box, stole the metal fork from the restaurant, and shoveled it in right before the ferry took off. I also recycled the metal fork! GO GREEN or GET OUT.
The next day was bright and early meeting with Keiretsu. The view from their penthouse office was insane. I got to see the companies pitch that pay a whopping $7,000 to have their ideas be heard. CRAY-CRAY-IN-THE-BAY-BAY. The pitches were solid, and many of our PitchForce friends secured funding. Go them!
I also met new friends! Thomas and Nastasja are from Beligum and they are bomb. I overheard them speaking French at Keiretsu and totally…accidently…busted into their conversation. They are here for the same reason I am, to get some startup experience and starve!
They both sent me an email the next day saying it was nice to meet me and to email them when I hear of an ‘entrepreneurial event’ (hahaha) they can go to. THAT’S SO BELGIAN. <3. Friends forever 2014.
After the meeting Max took me out to lunch with Steve Job’s right-hand man of 20 years, Ron Weissman. He is such a baller. He is sharp as a whip, a professor, and the author of tons of great books. So thankful to Max to allow me to pick his brain for an hour.
The real fun of the week started on Wednesday. It was time for LAUNCH FEST 2014! Launch Fest was literally chaos. There were people strapped to robot gear playing virtual reality games, smoke projectors, famous speakers, and, most importantly, the best Hawaiian Sliders a Midwestern foodie could ask for!
Out of 100 demo tables I probably talked to 70 comanpies trying to recruit them for PitchForce. My favorite company was FeedingForward. A startup run by 2 (AWESOME) guys my age that connects people with excess food to the homeless shelters that need it. For example: Take a picture of the food Panera has that they need to throw out, list how many pounds of food it is, and a truck picks it up and delivers it to the homeless. Love it. They make money off of tax write offs, and small premiums for securing cheap food for shelters. Get it guys. Check it out at feedingforward.com
I also got to hear Mark Cuban speak, he was awesome. I also followed him around by 5 feet for at least 10 minutes because I am magnetically attracted to celebrities but can never talk to them. It’s a real problem. A girl from work saw me taking pictures of his back, she pee’d herself.
Speaking of celebrities… I SAW BROODS THURSDAY NIGHT (at the scariest place on the planet!)
If you don’t know who Broods is check them out on Spotify right now. I will wait until you come back.
Good. They are fresh out of NZ and it was their first US show, they totally KILLED IT. I was three feet from Caleb and about 10 from Georgia. The urge to climb on stage was overwhelming. I made a heart from my hands at Georgia before their set and she smiled and giggled. GAH MARRY ME.
They are going to be huge by the end of the year, mark my words : ).
On Friday we visited LinkedIn, Google, and Rich Moran!
Glenn never fed us, we went like 100 hours without eating and we were all going to kill each other. Pete, Hannah, and I were going psycho in the back seat.
On a more topical note…both companies were incredible, the speakers were well prepared, comical, and my soul brothers. I would love to work at either.
Here is the Office Perk Shoot Out:
LinkedIn: Free arcade, TRX training, weight room, free bikes, free slurpees & froyo.
Google: Free laundry service, ball pit (!!!!!), gyms, grocery service, free bikes, soccer/volleyball courts, free national park just for Google (WUHHHHT.)
Take me and my first-born.
We got to visit with Rich Moran as well, he started our program. Yay Rich! His house was incredible, so was his dog BUSTER. Rich is a venture capitalist, author, and multi-millionare, he is also a Miami Alum. It was super nice of him to open his doors to us and show us around his hood.
On Saturday we got Ramen in Japantown! I also ate 3 crepes in 24 hours.
GAH. IT NEVER GETS OLD.
Regard this photo of me being happy, NOT racist.
We were also all tired, loopy, and hilarious.
On Sunday Hannah took Macy, Brielle, Jenny, and I to StartUp BaseCamp. Basically it’s summer camp for startups. European startups pay $65 a night to get mentored and try to break America. We met Nikolas from Denmark and Polina from Germany. After Polina’s epic pitch I secured her for PitchForce in April! So excited! She created KptnCook, an app that sends you 3 recipes a day. When you pick a recipe you want to cook, you drive by the supermarket and pick up the kit prepared by the grocer that has everything in it.
Also Hannah’s boss Guillaume invited us over to use StartUp BaseCamp’s CRAZY backyard for our own personal party fests. #GuillaumeForPrez
Overall, this sums up our weekend.