Category Archives: bay area

Mountain View Farmer’s Market slut shaming

The worst part of this ridiculous ordeal that made me personally uncomfortable was the Farmer’s Market employee who made the absurd request.

He stood right next to this employee, staring at her unconverted body waiting for her to cover it. The lack of respect and creepiness was surreal. It was like he some kind of parental figure making sure that the bad child was doing their work.


Next week – weather permitting – I am going shirtless 

Belly Buttons Indecent Say Mountain View Farmer’s Market Vice Cops

Today, I went to the Farmer’s Market as I go every week. And it was a scorcher. Approximately 95 degrees heat.

Skeleton In A Bikini

And one of the sellers to deal with the heat decided to wear a bikini top. Because she didn’t want to become a skeleton prematurely.

And apparently that was indecent.



Not that she was violating some established policy of the Farmer’s Market, but no  – apparently some woman complained and the vice cops (in reality some poor Farmer’s Market employee who in spite of the 90 degree heat was wearing a polo-shirt and khaki pants) had to intervene to protect us…

And apparently the key to making it decent was to cover her belly… She took an apron covered her belly and all was well in the world.

Just so we’re clear in Mountain view this is decent:

But show that belly button and you are a harlot and inflaming the passions of men! And women! How dare you!

This is so absurd it deserves repeating.

It’s a hot day, and she wanted to wear a bikini top and the Mountain View Vice Cops responding to the outrage of another female customer demanded that the woman cover her belly up. Yes, you got it. It’s 2015, in Mountain View, possibly the most multicultural progressive part of North America and belly buttons are indecent.

For context, in the 1950’s women on television were not allowed to show their navels.

Where do we go next – outrageous hair colors? Inappropriate ear-rings? Facial hair?

She wasn’t indecent. She wasn’t flaunting anything. She was trying to deal with the heat on a hot day doing an exhausting job.

My reaction as this was unfolding was to offer my shirt. I wanted to see the reaction of the vice cop as I took off my shirt and walked shirtless in a public parking lot … I find cyclists in their tight fitting chamois that can flaunt men’s packages to be more indecent…  The absurdity of her wearing my t-shirt to cover her indecent navel while my flabby hairy chest was allowed to flash the world in all its glory would have been … awesome. The poor woman had the same thought and was this close to going along with my absurd plan and then figured that she liked her paycheck and decided that perhaps today was not a good day to strike a blow for feminism.

My moral outrage continued… I called the mountain view farmer’s market at (800) 806-3276 to tell them what I think of their pursuit of 1950’s decency … You should too.

As a final note… If the City of Mountain View confirms that covering the belly button was a pre-existing policy and that the poor employee was simply enforcing the policy then that’s fine. Still absurd but fine. Fine because it wasn’t some random stranger trying to bring us all the way back to this… It was our elected representatives…

Too hot for Starcraft II

Unfortunately today’s heat wave precludes me playing starcraft ii. The heat generated from the fan, coupled with the heat in the house makes it impossible to play.

Edit – although if I played naked it might work. And put a bucket underneath to catch the sweat. And thanks to all of my training I have salt-tablets to deal with dehydration and a camelback to keep hydrated… Naked co-ed starcraft … Some things can never be unsaid or unseen. 

The Worst Customer Experience Ever at Fry’s Electronics

Fry’s Electronics is a Bay Area institution. Fry’s has notoriously poor customer service paired with excellent selection and an amazingly great no questions asked return policy.

How bad is the customer service?

When Best Buy set up shop here, they ran a sequence of ads asking local Bay Area residents what they thought of Fry’s customer service. Let’s be clear, they said that their pimply faced sales reps knew more about the products they were selling than the other guys sales reps. They were saying the other guy had set the bar so low, that they could vault over it …

Fry’s Sales Reps Mislead

Many years ago I learned that a Fry’s Electronics rep would mislead you. The sales rep in 1998 sold me a VCR that he said could skip over ads. Stupid Kostadis, what the sales rep meant was that there was a 30 second skip button on my VCR.

Two years ago, I relearned that lesson when I tried to buy a portable AC. The sales rep tried to sell me the product he was tasked with selling even though it was the wrong product for my needs.

Fry’s as a warehouse

The last two years I have used Fry’s as a warehouse. I show up with a piece of paper that describes the precise product I want. I avoid every single sales rep in the store, pick up the product, and then leave. If I have any questions I use my cell phone to look the information up. If a sales rep approaches me I growl at them: Go away. If they try and offer help: I say no, I don’t need it.

That approach mostly worked. Until today.

The all-time low

I wanted to buy some memory for my new 10” netbook. So I write down the specifications, and I march into Fry’s expecting to find the part and leave.

Unfortunately I could not just pick up the memory module from an aisle. A sales rep had to enter the specifications and then fetch me the part. I was ready to turn around and leave but figured that the simple task of entering some data into a computer and fetching the memory should preclude the usual set of Fry’s shenanigans.

But no.

The sales rep enters the information I carefully wrote down, tells me the price and I say okay. But before I sign and she gets her commission, she asks me a question. The question made it clear to both of us that she didn’t have the part I wanted. Instead of admitting that she could not fulfill my order,  the Fry’s shenanigans began.

First she says that:

The memory module does not exist. That the memory module whose specifications I recorded from a memory module being sold on Amazon did not exist.

When I look at her with disbelief and say, no I want this specific part, she turns around and  says that

To get the memory module I wanted, I had to buy 4 GB.

And when I refuse to do that, she starts mumbling stuff. Frustrated, and concerned that her inability to speak English was causing a misunderstanding,  I ask if she could just get me the part so I could read the packaging for myself and determine if I wanted to buy it. Her response was:


Okay, so I can’t get the part I want, I can’t look at the part I before I buy it, but there is an excellent return policy.

Wait, I know of a website that lets me get the part I want, doesn’t let me touch the part before I buy it, and has an excellent return policy …


And so 15 years later my sordid affair with Fry’s is over. I will never buy anything from that store as long as there is the option to buy it from Best Buy or Amazon. And if it only exists at Fry’s, I will live without the product.

Save Raw Milk — Oppose AB1735

The California state government, bowing to the pressures of the large agribusinesses that do most of the farming, have chosen to ban the sale of raw unpasteurized milk. Of course, an outright ban would have been too obvious, so instead they made the requirements to ship so onerous, that the small farmers that sold the milk will no longer be able to sell it.

This is an outrageous, unacceptable, overreach by a state legislature to kill a segment of the farming community to serve it’s political paymasters in the large agribusiness under the tattered fig leaf of concern for the health of Californians.

If you care about the right of individuals to buy products that are safe then please go to this website:

And follow the instructions to protest this recent law.

As if we don’t have more important matters to worry about.

Living in the bubble.

One the endearing traits about Google employees that went to Google straight out of school is that they have a distorted idea of what the rest of the world is like.

Recently a friend of mine told the following tale:

Because of the solar panels in the main parking lot, a couple of days ago I had to park far away and took the shuttle to get to my building. While I was in the shuttle I overheard the following conversation:

Google Employee 1: Back when SGI  had these buildings there was a lot more parking space so you didn’t have to park so far out.

Google Employee 2: Wow, the valets must have been really bored.

Good Lord, what will these people do when they leave this bubble?

You know it’s time for spring when…

This past weekend I was up in bear valley at a friend’s cabin. We were there with his dogs and my dog to enjoy the snow and the mountains. A few days of R&R.

Whenever we go there we go cross country skiing with the dogs in the backcountry area.

My wife and I don’t own skiis so we had to rent some from the very friendly ski rental area.

While we were returning our stuff, we started to chat with the employees. I remarked that in spite of the excellent ski conditions no one was there. To which the male employee replied that it’s April and in the Bay Area if it’s April the locals don’t ski.

I was about to start laughing, when he then proceeded to complain about the snow. That there had been so much snow that he had been skiing on nothing but powder for months on end. That he and his budies were looking forward to some icy hard pack or spring conditions.

So there you have it, you know it’s time for spring when the ski bums are desperate for the snow to stop falling.