market research

Efficient Marketing Research for Startups Using Facebook Advertising

Who will buy your product? Which variation do they like best? How does your cofounder’s suggested slogan compare to the one your mom thought was clever? What’s next for your mobile app company? …How do you do this all at once quickly and relatively cheaply? The answer, of course, is Adwords. But if you want … Continue reading


A Brief Interlude of Classic Russian Poetry about Missing Genitals

My on-going casual explorations of world literature lead toward endless sources of stifled bawdiness. From ancient Japanese fart haikus to, well, today’s poem, I find ample samples that could be sophomore year standards but instead end up in Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader collections and ironic coffee table books for hipsters. Thankfully, the ever-present human desire to tell the best dick jokes at … Continue reading

Godzilla Plans His Attack

An Event Planning & Marketing Checklist for Startups

I hear “Let’s do a big event!” as a marketing solution for startups more frequently nowadays. This sentence is often followed with “But we don’t want to spend anything,” “The community manager should totally have the bandwidth to plan this all out tomorrow,” and “Make sure TechCrunch covers it.” Consider this blog post a textual version of future-you running … Continue reading

Budapest cover

A Traveler’s Guide to 48 Hours in Budapest

On the morning of March 19, I had no idea where I’d be the night of March 19. We went to the Aer Lingus ticket counter, roller bags in hand: Budapest had the cheapest flights, so to Budapest we went. I knew very little about this city, but now that I know roughly three days worth, … Continue reading

wheels up

Where are we going today?

“I don’t mean to be negative, but there’s little chance you’ll be flying today,” our friend the taxi driver warmly warns us. His Irish brogue a cuddly bearer of bad news. “Maybe you will. Better to be lucky than rich I say.” Warning #3. Warning #1. Our friends the Dubai Air stewardesses in the elevator. “Where … Continue reading

the lie

Vatican City – OR – How do you explain Pope Pius XII to a Jew whose family was wiped out in the Holocaust?

“I’m taking you to Catholic Sin City,” Seth says as we wind our way with the Tiber. Today is Vatican City day. I apologize with “excuse me, Sister” rather than “excuse me” as we weave between the ambling Sisters of Charity (some habits die hard), stopping at the corner with three collared priests who shift and huff … Continue reading


Hey, I can speak (publicly) again!

lim·bo /ˈlimbō/ noun 1. The supposed abode of souls unready for heaven. 2. The frustration of the truly damned: an inability to step toward the next logical progression. Secrets don’t make friends. But if released before the official closing of a startup acquisition, they can kill deals. This is why I’ve said nothing of substance publicly about … Continue reading


A fond farewell to Avocado. A warm hello to Firebase.

Today is my last day at Avocado Software, makers of the best app for couples and of [redacted], which officially launches [redacted]. I’d tell you more about [redacted], but [redacted]. Seriously though, you’re going to [redacted] when you find out what it is. Avocado continues to be the first app in my iPhone home tray, … Continue reading


If you’re Uber, you may not want to use the word “Sucks” in your advertisements.

[Update: Uber reached out to me to deny that they purchased the “Lyft Sucks!” Facebook ad. See bottom of post for details.] A humble suggestion. If you’re Uber, and you’ve been banking on an image of luxury and sophistication – black cars, leather seats, convenience at the touch of a button – this is perhaps … Continue reading


A thoughtful letter to the burglar who stole all our stuff

Dear friend, I imagine that by now you have fenced all $13,000 worth of our electronics, jewelry, clothes, and assorted equipment. Although many have been angry – even wrathful – on my behalf, I find that I can not join them. I choose, instead, to believe in a fanciful story that explains why my fellow … Continue reading


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