There is a coffee shop here in Palo Alto called The Prolific Oven. I’ve been sitting here for a quite awhile catching up on email, building spreadsheets and other things for my company before heading to the airport.
So far, I’ve unintentionally managed to overhear not one but 4 pitches to Venture Capitalists. I wasn’t trying. I know it was VC pitches because the ritual of the VC giving the sales pitch was carried out with laser-like efficiency.
The first thing I’ve noticed is there must be some kind of secret handshake whereby no two people working in the same general area show up at the same time. It appears nobody cares if there are 50 people listening to a loud pitch and dialog going back and forth.
The second interesting thing is when some investment person doesn’t want to be in the meeting, they are not shy about showing it. Wow. You are sitting with two people and you pull out your iPhone and start tapping while the entrepreneur is talking and looking directly at you? Really? Wow, that just is 20 for 10 on the rude scale.
4 meetings, total of 15 or so people, with mostly Macs and mostly RIM devices being rudely pulled out of the holsters.
And loud. Yowsa, whatever happened to sitting in a quiet corner?
“Let me take it back to the team and socialize this opportunity for portfolio synergy.” (No, really!)
“Can I get the business plan and your  year forecasts?”
“Very interesting, let’s continue the dialog.”
“You’d need to move here and we don’t invest in Maine.”
“Isn’t Google Wave going to do this?” (I almost choked on my tea when this got blurted out.)
And at the 50% level: “No, I don’t sign NDAs.”
I love this place….